Loughner indicted for attempted assassination

TUCSON, AZ (RNN) - Jared Lee Loughner was indicted Wednesday on one count of attempted assassination and two counts of attempted murder by a federal grand jury.

Loughner, 22, is accused of opening fire at a constituent meeting on Jan. 8 in Tucson, AZ, killing six people and injuring 13 others.

Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, D-AZ, was shot in the head and remains in serious condition in a nearby hospital.

"Today, the Grand Jury returned an initial three-count indictment against Jared Lee Loughner in the Tucson shooting case," said U.S. Attorney Dennis K. Burke in a news release. "We are in the early stages of this ongoing investigation. We have made considerable progress in a short period of time."

The indictment alleges that Loughner attempted to assassinate Giffords and attempted to murder two federal employees, Ron Barber and Pamela Simon.

"This case involves potential death-penalty charges, and the Department rules require us to pursue a deliberate and thorough process," Burke's statement said. "Today's charges are just the beginning of our legal action. We are working diligently to ensure that our investigation is thorough and that justice done for the victims and their families."

Copyright 2010 Raycom News Network. KOLD contributed to this report.