Prosecutors in Aurora, Colorado are pushing for the death penalty for accused cinema shooter James Holmes after rejecting his offer for a plea deal.

The suspect stands accused of opening fire just before a midnight screening of The Dark Knight Rises last summer (12), killing 12 Batman fans and leaving 58 wounded.

Last week (27Mar13), Holmes, 25, offered to plead guilty to first-degree murder in a bid to avoid execution, but authorities have snubbed the agreement and declared on Monday (01Apr13) that they will pursue capital punishment.

During a court hearing on Monday, Arapahoe County District Attorney George Brauchler said, "It's my determination and my intention that in this case for James Eagan Holmes, justice is death."

A tentative trial date has been set for next February (14) and the case is expected to last for four months.

Holmes has been in custody since the cinema massacre last July (12).