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Judge may rule if defense can call expert witness in deadly Fort Hood shooting trial

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TWC News: Judge may rule if defense can call expert witness in deadly Fort Hood shooting trial
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FORT HOOD, Texas—The man accused in a deadly shooting rampage on Fort Hood is scheduled to make another court appearance Friday.

Major Nidal Hasan is charged with 13 counts of premeditated murder and 32 counts of attempted premeditated murder. Carolina Beach native Kim Munley is credited with helping stop the attack in 2009.

A couple of motions are pending in front of the court. The judge could decide if the defense is allowed to have an expert witness to counter a government witnesses argument that Hasan is considered a "Contemporary violent extremist" or "homegrown terrorist."

Also, Hasan could find out if he is allowed a "religious conversion expert". The defense said this expert will help explain the defendant's motive in the alleged shootings. Hasan faces the death penalty or life in prison without parole if convicted.

There is also the controversy surrounding Hasan's appearance. Friday morning it will be determined if the defendant will attend the proceedings neatly shaved. Previously, the judge found Hasan in contempt of court for refusing to shave.

The beard violates military regulations, yet Hasan's attorney said his client is expressing his Muslim Faith.

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