Jared Loughner has made his first court appearance and has been ordered held without bail as the federal case against him in the killings of six people and wounding of 14 others in Tucson, Ariz., on Saturday gets underway.
During a short appearance before federal Magistrate Judge Lawrence Anderson in Phoenix this hour, the 22-year-old Tucson man appeared to "understand everything the judge was telling him," CNN's Ted Rollins just reported.
He stands charged with:
— Attempted assassination of a member of Congress (Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-AZ), which carries a potential penalty of life imprisonment.
— The murders of federal Judge John Roll and Gabriel Zimmerman, an aide to Giffords, which carry potential penalties of death or life imprisonment.
— Two counts of attempted murder for allegedly trying to kill Giffords aides Pamela Simon and Ron Barber, which could put him in prison for 20 years.
His next appearance in federal court is set for Jan 24.
State charges, which will take up the remaining murders and assaults, await.
Loughner's been assigned a lawyer — Judy Clarke, who represented Zacarias Moussaoui, the "Unabomber" Theodore Kaczynski and Susan Smith, the South Carolina woman who drowned her toddlers in 1994.
Cameras were not allowed in the court room. According to the Associated Press, "Loughner entered the courtroom handcuffed and wearing a tan inmate uniform. His head is shaved and he has a cut on his right temple. ... His expression was impassive as he walked in, looked straight at the crowd at the back of the room packed with reporters, then turned around to speak to his attorney. ... He responded 'yes' when asked if he understood his rights."