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Friday, May 02 2014 11:19 AM

Trial of alleged school shooter postponed to September

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    By Casey Christie / The Californian

    Bryan Oliver, the teen accused of two counts of attempted murder in a shooting at Taft Union High School, is in Kern County Superior Court on Oct. 18, 2013, with his attorney.

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By THE BAKERSFIELD CALIFORNIAN

The trial for alleged school shooter Bryan Oliver won't begin for another four months.

Judge Colette M. Humphrey set the new trial date for Sept. 8.

The case has received widespread media coverage and been the subject of debate regarding gun laws as it occurred soon after the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre in Connecticut in which 28 people -- most of them children -- died.

Deputy Public Defender Paul Cadman, Oliver's attorney, said Friday he and prosecutors are continuing discovery -- exchanging information about the witnesses and evidence they'll present at trial. Cadman was confident the trial will begin in September.

It had previously been scheduled for May 12.

Oliver, 16 at the time, entered a classroom at Taft Union High School on Jan. 10, 2013 and opened fire with a shotgun, authorities have said. He seriously injured student Bowe Cleveland, and shotgun pellets grazed teacher Ryan Heber.

Teacher and campus supervisor Kim Fields convinced Oliver to put the gun down and he was taken into custody. He's charged with two counts of attempted murder and three counts of assault with a gun on a person, and is being held without bail in a juvenile facility. He will be tried as an adult.

Cadman has argued that Oliver was bullied constantly. According to testimony from Oliver's preliminary hearing, the teen told a school official he "snapped" as a result.

Cadman has said the whole situation is a "terrible tragedy."

The family of Cleveland, who has undergone numerous surgeries, is suing the Taft Union High School District. The family's attorney, Daniel Rodriguez, has said the district failed to take action despite several warning signs about Oliver's behavior, including a February 2012 threat to blow up the school auditorium.

Rodriguez has said school officials were made aware of the threat but never reported it to law enforcement.

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