FORT HOOD, Texas —
Hasan was never allowed to argue in front of the jury that the shooting was necessary to protect Islamic and Taliban leaders. But during the trial, he leaked documents to journalists that revealed he told military mental health workers in 2010 that he could "still be a martyr" if executed by the government.
When Hasan began shooting, soldiers were standing in long lines to receive immunizations and doctors' clearance. Many of the soldiers were preparing to deploy, while others had recently returned home.
All but one of the dead were soldiers, including a pregnant private who curled on the floor and pleaded for her unborn child's life. It was the deadliest shooting ever at a U.S. military installation. More than 30 other people were wounded.
The attack ended when authorities shot Hasan in the back. He is now paralyzed from the waist down and uses a wheelchair.
The military called nearly 90 witnesses at the trial and more during the sentencing phase. But Hasan rested his case without calling a single person to testify and made no closing argument. Even with his life at stake during the sentencing phase, he made no attempt to question witnesses and gave no final statement to jurors.
Hasan's civil attorney, John Galligan, said Wednesday that Hasan received an unfair trial. Galligan said he was disappointed in the sentence and was confident it would be reversed on appeal.
Death sentences are unusual in the military, which has just five other prisoners on death row. Of 16 death sentences handed down by military juries in the last 30 years, 11 have been overturned, according to an academic study and court records. No American soldier has been executed since 1961.
Eduardo Caraveo, whose father was killed in the rampage, said he cared more about Hasan being convicted than about the sentencing. But he would have preferred to see Hasan receive a life sentence.