Friday, January 4, 2013
Was Trip to Cancun Catalyst to Murder? Jodi Arias Murder Trial
Marie "Mimi" Hall was the first prosecution witness to take the stand in the Jodi Arias Murder trial. She took the stand on January 3, 2013. Hall told jurors that she met Travis Alexander through the Mormon Church. Although they initially went on a date, it was quickly recognized that they were a great match as friends, and they remained such good friends that Alexander invited Hall to accompany him on a work retreat to Cancun, Mexico. The trip was to begin on June 10, 2008. Travis wouldn't live to see that day. Friends found him murdered in his home in Mesa, AZ on June 9, 2008. Coincidence, or catalyst? Travis's close friends have told investigators that Arias had been engaging in stalker-like behavior in the months preceding the murder. Twice, Alexander had his tires slashed after going out with other women. He told close friends his Facebook account had been hacked into. Arias even reportedly would use the doggie door to gain entry to Alexander's home. A woman Travis had been dating received mysterious e-mails, warning her that it was sinful to have a man sleeping under the same roof. The e-mails were anonomyus, but it doesn't take a forensic genius to figure out who was behind the threats. The evidence presented thus far has been nothing less than shocking. Graphic language and photos have been marked as exhibits, as Travis's horrified family and friends struggled to keep their composure. I cannot imagine how difficult it must be for them to view the bloody photographs of their brother, his home - his life cut short by this woman who is now trying to ruin his reputation. Prosecutor Juan Martinez has methodically taken the jury through evidence that undeniably links Arias to this crime. Some of the strongest evidence so far has been the photos recovered from the digital camera. It appears Arias attempted to delete the photos the pair had taken earlier that day, when she drove from her home in Yreka, CA to his Mesa AZ home in the middle of the night. The photos were sexually explicit. The most damaging photos were taken in what appears to be the beginning of the violent attack. Thankfully the photos were recovered, and the date/time stamps removed any doubt that Arias was lying about not being there. When confronted with her lies, she simply adjusted her story. To the best of my knowledge, the trial hasn't been televised live. On Monday, January 7, "In Session" will begin coverage of what has been called "the biggest case since Casey Anthony". It's easy to draw comparisons between these two young women. They are both attractive young ladies who have lied over and over. At least Casey Anthony was smart enough to avoid giving taped interviews with the media while she was awaiting trial! Thanks to the "Sunshine State" laws, we were able to see Casey's interactions and conversations with her family - this provided some insight into who she was. I'm sure she could've had interviews lined up by the dozens. Arias seemingly couldn't help herself - she lied on two taped interviews and told two completely different stories during each. The boldest statement to come out of Jodi Arias's mouth was "no jury will ever convict me of this crime, and you can mark my words!". As I've said time and time again - this woman GREATLY overestimates her own intelligence and charms. She ultimately is UNDERESTIMATING the intelligence of the jury as well. When confronted with the cold and hard evidence against her, the only option she had left to her was to cry "self defense" or "insanity". There are legal definitions around both of those defenses. There's a huge difference between defending yourself, to the point where you are able to escape the imminent danger you are facing and an outright slaughter. This was an outright slaughter. Rageful overkill. Jodi Arias's attorney is trying to paint a picture of a demure woman who was seduced and used by a sexual deviant and emotionally abuse man. Text messages and e-mails do show that at some point, Travis Alexander called Jodi Arias a "slut" and "whore". Since Travis is no longer here to frame the context of these messages, we may never know what preceded or followed them. What we do have are close friends of Travis who have said he had a heart of gold, he was funny - he encouraged the people around him to live the best lives they could live, and most importantly - he was a gentle and kind person who nobody ever saw or heard abusing anybody. He treated people the way he wanted to be treated. He may have entered into an intimate relationship outside of marriage and against his Mormon faith, but that doesn't define him as a person or a man. He is defined by all of the lives he touched. Yesterday in court jurors also heard the first taped interview between lead detective Esteban Flores and defendant Jodi Arias, in which the first of many lies was told. Arias denied being in Arizona, stating that she hadn't seen Travis in several months. As the discussion continued, when asked if she knew of anybody who would want to harm Travis Alexander, and if he had been having any problems or issues with anyone, Arias was quick to point out that his tires had been twice slashed. Ironic, since she is the person suspected of the tire slashing incidents. She also attempted to point investigators towards a roommate of Travis's. Her behavior before the murder frightened his friends. Her behavior after the murder stunned and sickened family and friends. She attended his funeral service, reportedly smiling at family and friends during such a somber moment. She added a "In Memorial" photo montage of Travis Alexander to her MySpace page days after the body was found. It was still viewable on the internet as late as last week. There is a quote from Travis on her MySpace blog page. Sad. They only dated for a few months, yet he paid the ultimate price for this relationship. She couldn't let go. She wouldn't let him go on with his life without her.