TUCSON, Nov. 8 (UPI) -- Ex-U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords will face the man who shot her in the head when he is sentenced in a Tucson federal court, a person close to the family said.
A source closed to the family also said Giffords' husband, Mark Kelly, will speak on his wife's behalf Thursday during the sentencing hearing of Jared Loughner, whose shooting spree at Giffords' meet-and-greet last year killed six people and wounded 13, Politico reported.
Loughner and federal prosecutors reached a plea agreement in August that will allow him to live but ensures he remains behind bars.
As part of the deal, Loughner, 24, pleaded guilty to 19 of the more than 50 charges he faced, CNN said. The remaining offenses were dropped in exchange for the guilty pleas, a written agreement filed in court indicated.
Prosecutors agreed to the plea after considering Loughner's history of mental illness and the comments of victims and their families. In August, a judge determined Loughner competent to stand trial.
When the plea agreement was reached, Kelly released a statement saying he and Giffords were "satisfied" with the U.S. Justice Department's decision to accept the agreement instead of seeking the death penalty and a trial that could have forced surviving victims, their families and the families of the dead to relive that day.
On Jan. 8, 2011, Loughner opened fire at Giffords' Congress on Your Corner event outside a Tuscon supermarket. Among the dead were federal judge John Roll, Giffords aide Gabriel Zimmerman and 9-year-old Christina Taylor-Green. Giffords underwent intense rehabilitation and returned to the House to vote to avoid a default on the nation's debt last summer.
Giffords, who resigned in January to focus on her rehabilitation, led the Pledge of Allegiance during the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C.