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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.

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