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The State of AZ vs. Jodi Arias - Opening Statements Slated For 1/2/13

Opening statements are slated for January 2, 2013 in Jodi Arias's murder trial.  Arias has been held on $2,000,000 bail in the Estrella Jail in Maricopa County since September 5, 2008 when she was arrested and charged with the first degree murder of ex-boyfriend Travis Alexander.  Alexander was found dead in his Mesa Arizona home on June 9, 2008.

According to recorded information provided on a Maricopa County jail hotline, court proceedings will begin at 10:30AM at the Superior Court, Criminal Division on W. Jefferson in Phoenix, AZ on January 2, 2013 where jurors will hear opening statements.  The trial has had numerous delays, changes in defense attorneys, and three differing accounts given by Arias of what happened to Travis Alexander that fateful night in June of 2008.

At one point, Arias wished to act as her own attorney - one of the defense attorneys appointed to the case asked to be taken off the case. His/her request was granted.  Arias's new attorney has a tough road ahead, given the changing stories given by their client, jailhouse interviews given by Arias and the physical left at the scene.

The story is tragic.  All murder cases are, however this one has all the makings for a full fledged media circus.  You have an attractive, petite young woman who doesn't look like most of us believe a killer would look like - a bright young man who was well liked and successful, a devout Mormon yet carrying on a physical relationship with the defendant.

Love, jealousy, religion and ultimately rejection made for a toxic combination for this relationship.  It ended in the worst way.  Although Travis's friends were concerned with the relationship almost immediately, nobody could have predicted things would have gone this far.  

The case made headlines initially in 2008 after being covered by shows such as Jane Velez-Mitchell and Nancy Grace, however it's been on the back burner after more than 4 1/2 years of delays.  The trial has been referred to as "the Trial of 2013", and much like the Casey Anthony trial, I expect it will receive national coverage. It's certainly been a long time coming.  Travis Alexander's family and friends deserve to know what happened, and he deserves justice!

Arias has given three stories to law enforcement about her involvement in the murder.  The latest, and the defense she will present in trial is the "self defense" theory.  Stay tuned for updates!!

Jury Chosen in Jodi Arias Trial

"In Session" reported this morning that a jury has finally been chosen in the murder trial of The State of AZ vs. Jodi Arias.  There will be 12 jurors and 6 alternates. The jury pool is reportedly 11 men and 7 women, which the defense must be pleased with.  Arias doesn't look like your typical killer or inmate for that matter, and men may have a more difficult time believing the petite and demure looking Arias is physically capable of carrying out such a brutal attack.

Arias' defense team has been fighting to have footage from jailhouse interviews Jodi Arias gave to TV shows "48 Hours" and "Inside Edition" excluded from evidence.  The judge ruled against the defense's request.  In Session reported this morning that trial coverage will begin on January 7, 2013.  Travis Alexander's family and friends are anxious for their day in court, and it appears they will finally get it!

For a trial that has been referred to as "the biggest trial since the State of Florida vs. Casey Anthony, news coverage has been scarce on this case, most likely due to 4 years worth of delays.  Arias wore glasses in court and appeared calm in the face of a death penalty case.  But looks can be deceiving.

In the end, I believe Jodi Arias herself will end up being her own worse enemy.  She has given law enforcement officials 3 very different accounts of the events leading up to the June, 2008 murder and initially denied being anywhere near Mesa AZ.  It was only in the face of physical evidence left at the scene of the crime that she admitted being there.  Bloody palm prints and time/date stamped photographs don't lie -people do.

During one of Arias' interviews held while she was in the custody in Sheriff Joe's Maricopa County jail, she predicted that "no jury in the world would convict me".  I hope she brings a fork to court because I have a feeling she's going to have to eat those words!  For those of you that aren't familiar with the case, Jodi Arias stands accused of murdering ex-boyfriend Travis Alexander in his home back in June of 2008.

By all accounts, Alexander was a great guy who was well liked by all who came into contact with him.  He worked for Pre-Paid Legal, where he met Jodi Arias during a convention.  They dated for several months, but Arias' increasingly possessive and erratic behavior eventually caused them to break up.  Travis was moving on and reportedly had began seeing another woman.

Alexander's severely battered body was found in the bathroom of his home by friends who entered to conduct a welfare check after several days of not being able to reach him.  He had been shot in the face, stabbed 27 times and had his throat slit - he had been deceased for several days before being discovered by friends.  I can't imagine how horrible that must have been for the friends who entered the house and found their friend in that condition.

Arias is now conceding that she killed him, but it was in self defense. Is blaming the victim the best defense they could come up with?  Hypothetically - let's give her the benefit of the doubt and say she and Travis had a fight that got physical that night.  Why not dial 911 or run to a neighbor's house for help? How does a gun and knife come into play when there are pictures of a smiling Travis in the shower, just minutes before a photo of a dead or dying Travis on the floor of the shower?  The self defense story logistically doesn't hold water.

When you have love, obsession, jealousy and then rejection it's sure to be a trial full of drama.  It's not often that prosecutors have the type of photo evidence they reportedly have in this trial.  The day of reckoning is closing in on Jodi Arias.

Jodi Arias Trial Approaches

Travis Alexander was brutally murdered in his Mesa AZ home in early June of 2008.  His ex-girlfriend, Jodi Arias was arrested and charged with first degree murder shortly thereafter.  It was a vicious scene. Alexander was a young man with his life ahead of him.  His friends and family describe him as a positive and larger than life guy who was a devout Mormon.

He had a successful career with Pre Paid Legal.  It was at a convention for the company where he would ultimately meet the young woman charged in his murder.  Arias, now 31 years old is a petite and soft spoken woman who doesn't fit what most of us envision a killer would look like.  But looks can be deceiving.  Alexander and Arias had a brief but intense relationship that only lasted months, but ended up costing him his life.

Mormons are strictly against having sexual relations until or unless you are married. Arias was so captivated by Travis Alexander that she learned all that she could about the Mormon faith. Several of Travis's good friends were wary of the relationship he was having with Jodi Arias because even early on, she seemed possessive of Travis, jealous and clingy.  Despite his Mormon faith, he began an intense intimate relationship with her.

As time went on, Travis began to see the traits in Jodi that he hadn't seen before - the same things that worried his friends early on.  He broke up with her, she didn't take rejection well.  In the weeks and months that followed, he began dating other women and had his tires slashed - twice.  There was no proof it was Jodi Arias but he strongly suspected she was watching him.  He caught her hacking into his Facebook account and told her it was over.

What happened next is unclear. Here is what is known - Travis Alexander was discovered dead in the shower of his Mesa home on June 9, 2008.  He had been dead for several days, having been shot in the face, stabbed 47 times and his throat was slit from ear to ear. He was found by concerned friends who hadn't been able to reach him for several days.  He had a Mexico trip planned with another woman - a woman who wasn't Jodi Arias.  Was she aware of the trip?  When law enforcement arrived and spoke to his friends about Travis and any enemies he may have had, only one person came to mind.  They quickly pointed them to ex-girlfriend Jodi Arias.

When Arias initially spoke to police, she told them she hadn't seen Travis since April and was nowhere near Mesa at the time of the murder.  She told them she had been in Utah, visiting a man she had recently began seeing during the time in question.  When results from the forensic evidence began coming back, Arias was confronted with proof that she was at the crime scene. Her bloody palm print was recovered, and a digital camera discovered commingled with sheets in the dryer at the home were a virtual treasure trove of time and date stamped damning evidence against Arias.

Somebody attempted to delete the incriminating photos.  There were photos of a nude Jodi, posing on Travis' bed, pictures of a smiling Travis in the shower - followed by a picture of a bloody Travis who laid dead or dying on the shower floor.  It was only then that Arias came up with a second story.  She was with Travis, but two armed and masked intruders came in and killed him.  She narrowly escaped with her life. Lucky break, being able to grab your purse and get dressed and escape these two armed intruders.  Why she didn't call 911 after the escape would have been harder to explain.

Which brings us to story number 3.  She admits to killing Alexander, but only in self defense.  Sounds like a Hail Mary to me.  She went on to give several jailhouse interviews, predicting that "no jury in the world will convict me".  The jury has been chosen and the trial is finally supposed to begin the first week in January, 2013.  Aside from the mountain of physical evidence linking her to the crime, there is some outright creepy things that her defense team will have to try to explain away.

If she was indeed in danger and afraid of Travis, why did she go to his house that night? Why the smiling pictures in compromising positions?  Why did she lie to the police and give three versions of what happened?  After the news broke that Travis Alexander had been killed, Jodi Arias immediately put up an eerie photo array on her MySpace page "In Loving Memory of Travis Alexander".  The page is still viewable as of yesterday, and there are dozens of photos of Travis and Jodi in better times.  There is even a quote from Travis on the blog section of her page.  It says "The difference between a stumbling block and a stepping stone is the character of the individual walking the path" - Travis Alexander.

Wow. Self defense.  Really?  Was it necessary to shoot him in the face, stab him nearly 50 times and then slit his throat to neutralize the "danger" she was in?  The photos will tell the story.  One minute he's smiling in the shower, and the next minutes he's bleeding on the floor.  Did he bring a knife AND gun into the shower with him?  Good luck defense team.  Your going to need it!  I didn't know Travis Alexander, but this story has stuck with me because of the brutality of the crime and the creepiness factor that registered when I saw part of a Jodi Arias jailhouse interview.  She was applying makeup and fixing her hair, seemingly oblivious to the murder charge and potential death penalty that she faces.

I pray for justice for Travis and all those who knew and loved him.  This should never happen, but sadly it does and with alarming frequency.

Choosing a Jury - AZ vs. Jodi Arias

This week, 375 potential jurors are being summoned to a Maricopa county courthouse in the case of The State of AZ vs. Jodi Arias.  Jury selection is expected to last approximately two weeks.  The first 75 potential jurors were given questionnaires Monday.

Attorneys will review the questionnaires and return to court on Monday, December 17th to begin the process of questioning potential jurors individually.  Opening statements are scheduled to begin on January 2, 2013.  Jodi Arias, now 31 years old, has been incarcerated in Maricopa County since her arrest in mid-2008.

After initially insisting she was innocent, Arias has given at least three versions of what happened to Travis Alexander the night he was killed in early June, 2008.  Her latest version claims she killed Alexander in self defense.

This page will be updated as more information becomes available!

Jury Selection Begins, AZ vs. Jodi Arias

After 4 1/2 years and many delays, the jury selection process has begun in the case of The State of AZ vs. Jodi Arias for the murder of Travis Alexander.  They estimate it will take two weeks to seat a jury, but after the delays we've seen leading up to this point, don't hold your breath!

Arias has been in custody since 2008, arrested and charged in the brutal murder of ex-boyfriend Travis Alexander.  Arias' defense team has argued that Arias killed Alexander in self defense, and further argue that Arias didn't plan to kill him and it should not be a death penalty case.  Travis Alexander was discovered dead in his bathroom on June 9, 2008.  He had been shot in the face, stabbed 27 times and his throat was slit.

Evidence left at the scene, as well as deleted photos recovered from a digital camera found at Alexander's home link Arias to the murder.  She initially denied having anything to do with the crime, even going as far as creating a makeshift photo memorial page for Travis on MySpace within days of his death.  She was in attendance at his funeral service.  This woman gives me the creeps.  When she was arrested, she smiled in her mug shot.  While in custody, she competed in the Maricopa jail's holiday singing contest. She gave several jailhouse interviews, where she can be seen checking her makeup and hair - and smiling.  Creepy.

She proclaimed "no jury in the world will convict me, you can mark my words".  We'll see about that Ms. Arias.  I think you greatly overestimate your charm and intelligence.  The jury will see right through you.  To be continued....

Jodi Arias Trial *Update*

Well the delays keep coming!   Although jury selection was supposed to begin in mid-November, the most recent information I can find gives a potential date of December 10, 2012.  According to HLN News, opening statements will begin on January 2, 2013.  Let's hope that Travis Alexander's family will get the justice they deserve in the new year!

I'm surprised there isn't more news on the internet about this trial, since they have called it the biggest trial since Casey Anthony's.  Speaking of Casey Anthony - we knew it was just a matter of time for a Lifetime movie to be made about the case.  Lifetime will be airing a movie based on the book written by prosecutor Jeff Ashton "Prosecuting Casey Anthony" in mid January of 2013.  Let's hope Ms. Anthony doesn't profit at all from this movie.  Stay tuned.....

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