Monday, February 4, 2013

Jodi Arias Takes The Stand - Will It Keep Her Off Death Row?

Wow, another surprising day today in the Phoenix, Arizona courtroom where murder defendant Jodi Arias was called to the stand.  Many court watchers expected she would have to testify since thus far the defense hasn't been able to bring forth any testimony of violence or violent tendencies from murder victim Travis Alexander.

Arias was called to the stand late in the afternoon, following testimony from a defense expert who examined a hard drive, camera and phone for the defense earlier this year. They submitted into evidence a photo taken with a camera owned by Arias which displayed a pair of woman's underwear with the words "Travis'" on them, along with the T-Shirt many of us have already seen photos of Arias wearing that had the words "Travis Alexander's" printed on it.

Prosecutor Juan Martinez was able to show that the photo of the underwear and T-Shirt were taken on July 11, 2008 - just 4 days before Jodi Arias was arrested and charged with 1st degree murder of Travis Alexander, and curiously they were taken more than a month after the murder! So why did Arias feel the need to take a photo of these items? Did she take them in anticipation of her impending arrest?  I can't think of any other reason.

When she got on the stand, she looked at the jury and told them that she had killed Travis Alexander.  When asked why she killed him, she told the jury that he attacked her and she "protected herself".  Very cold, very unmoving testimony. Arias showed no emotion, in stark contrast to the sobbing we saw during the prosecution case where pictures of the aftermath of this murder were being shown in court.  Was she acting then, and/or is she acting now? Her performance thus far is flat. Disingenuous and rehearsed.

The defense has only begun their direct questioning of Arias. Martinez is just listening, not objecting excessively as we've seen through many of the defense witness testimony.  He's watching and waiting for his turn.  THAT will be something to see. Arias attempted to explain away her comments during a television interview in which she boldly predicted that "no jury will convict me, and you can mark my words on that", "because I'm innocent". Remember, this woman has had almost 5 years to try to fine tune her story.  She now states the reason she said that is because she "planned to kill herself" and therefore wouldn't be in court facing these charges.

This brings an interesting possibility to my mind.  Could this have been a murder-suicide plot from the start? Did she go to Mesa to kill Travis and herself, to bond them forever in death?  I doubt it, seems like another self serving comment to me.  Why didn't she kill herself?  If she contemplated suicide, how did she end up in Utah hours after the murder,acting completely normal and initiating intimate contact with a new man, Ryan Burns?  Seems to me she still can't get her story straight. 


The defense is going way back to Jodi's childhood to discuss the "abuse" she suffered at the hands of her mother, and her father. She told the jury that her mother hit her with a wooden spoon and her father was also abusive, but not as much as her mother.  She discussed how prior boyfriends cheated on her. What does this have to do with self defense?  Nothing.  They are going to have to dig a whole lot deeper and tell the jurors more about the incident that does matter - and that's June 4, 2008. 

In the state of Arizona, self defense means using an amount of force necessary to neutralize the immediate threat.  Even if you believe Alexander lunged or threatened Jodi Arias, ONE stab wound should've been enough to render him helpless or at least unable for the "attack" on her to continue - leaving her plenty of time to flee the scene and call for help.  If not the first stab wound, certainly the second stab wound would've stopped him. She wants a jury of her peers to believe defending herself REQUIRED 29 stab wounds, a slit throat - and a gunshot to his face?  It took ALL of that to stop him from coming at her ("lunging")? And all of this allegedly over a dropped camera??  Come on!

Tomorrow should be one of the most interesting days in that courtroom when her testimony continues.  I cannot wait to see the prosecution's cross examination of Jodi Arias. She will some explaining to do - we've seen Martinez's approach to witnesses, and he's not going to let Arias off the hook. More tomorrow, stay tuned!

10 comments:

  1. I am almost falling asleep with her testimony BUT every word she speaks gives her more rope to hang herself with!

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  2. I agree - much of this has been self serving testimony on her end! Can't wait to see the cross examination. No sleeping through that! Thanks

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  3. Yes Martinez's cross examination will be compelling to say the least. But what I'm waiting for is for Arias to snap on the stand like Edward Norton in the film Primal Fear. Is she a gifted enough "actor" to portray herself as having dissociative disorder/multiple personalities? Perhaps that she "blacked out" in the moment when Alexander allegedly became abusive-- and her "alter ego" killed him? Arias could then show that other "personality" when provoked on the stand and cause a mistrial?? Perhaps I've seen too many movies, but cannot help but think of what it would be like to have that sort Hollywood scenario play out in this very real life case. Of course it won't-- her strategy has surely been well rehearsed for some time... but it is fun to ponder nontheless!

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    1. Thankfully the jury has seen countless hours of her interrogation videos and the media interviews and can see how easily the lies come to her. Scary, that she does come across as calm and composed on the stand. I have to wonder how she will hold up under cross examination! It will still come down to what type of danger, if ANY - the jury believes she was in at that moment on 6/4/08. There's no way that much deadly force was required for a legit self defense claim!

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  4. I just heard that when Jodi walked in to testify today she smiled at the jury and 2 of the women jurors smiled back. I always feel sick and worried when I hear stuff like that. I followed everyday of the Casey Anthony trial and was so shocked and upset at the verdict I cried.
    Jeezemcrow, I heard she took MARTIAL ARTS??!! Then tell us, Miss Arias, if Travis attacked you, and being that he was in the shower and naked, and you were dressed (as per the infamous photos), why is it that you couldn't have used one of your 'moves' to disable him for just a second so you could run like hell outside? Hardly likely a naked man would be chasing you into the yard!
    Here are a couple things I caught and hope the prosecutor knows about.
    As far as the breaking up with Darryl---On one of the nighttime TV shows covering this case they had a guest on via phone several nights ago. It was a woman (older than Jodi) that worked with her at some restaurant while Jodi was living with Darryl---(NOT the Ventana Inn). She specifically said that Jodi talked to her about being "UNHAPPY IN HER RELATIONSHIP", and that this was "A COUPLE YEARS BEFORE SHE MET TRAVIS", yet Jodi is basically saying Travis caused her to break off her relationship with Darryl!

    I myself heard one thing that really made me sit up in attention. This was on a TV show where they were playing those police interview tapes with the detective and Jodi. They were talking about why Jodi would kill Travis, and of course Jodi was denying having anything to do with it, and because she basically has diarrhea of the mouth, she elaborated and said "Why would I kill Travis? I had no reason to kill Travis---HE NEVER RAPED ME, HE NEVER__________"---At this point the detective interrupted her! I couldn't believe my ears. It sure as hell sounded to me like she was going to say "He never raped me, he never ABUSED me in any way. There was no reason for me to hate him"!!! I can't help thinking how much more amo Mr. Martinez would have had the detective let her finish her sentence! IF ONLY....Maybe we all could have been spared the "self defense" excuse...
    Did anyone else hear this on that tape too?

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    1. OMG I heard that comment too about Travis never raping her...she kept saying "there was no reason....", as if she believed if she could get Det. Flores to see she had no motive to kill him, she'd be off the hook! But yes, I heard that too, clear as day. There's a big difference between emotional abuse & physical abuse if you are going to say it was self defense in Arizona! You can only use as much force as required to stop the threat. If she needed to stab him that many times, slit his throat and shoot him - she'd better have some broken bones and severe injuries herself! She would've been better off with an insanity defense than self defense. This was just too brutal for self defense. It's clear that Travis never saw this coming - or she'd have injuries as well. Thanks for your comments!!

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  5. A few more words...

    I am now always afraid cases like this will have idiot, ignorant, and lazy jurors like those in Fla. That being said, here is my own brief take on the situation.
    I think basically that Travis was a good person. I think he was immature and made some mistakes but who hasn't? I think that Jodi most definitely premeditated this murder and was a stalker.
    I believe that somewhere along the line Travis realized what kind of person she was, and that she was not "marriage material" for him, and that was when he began dating other women, and sincerely trying to distance himself from the relationship with Jodi, which I think he was smart enough to know was unhealthy, not based on mutual good core values, and was bringing out his weaknesses and not his more admirable qualities. (His friend Dave Hall said that Travis told him:
    'There's nothing about her that I see in marriage material - or wife material, 'But it's hard to say no to a woman that sneaks into your house, crawls in your bed and tries to, you know, seduce you.')
    I believe that Jodi used sex and other forms of manipulation and wheedling to try to repeatedly ingratiate herself to Travis, and unfortunately, he would 'slip', and fall back into a relationship with her.
    On the day of the murder, I think Jodi slept with Travis in a final desperate attempt to try to get him to take her on the Mexico trip. I think that Travis made a huge error in judgment when he slept with Jodi on his final day. I think that afterwards, he felt remorse, regret, and possibly more than a little disgust with himself. I think he probably gently tried to reiterate to Jodi that they did not belong together, and that he had made a mistake that day, and that she needed to move on.
    This was the final blow, and she realized there was no way of forcing Travis to love her. She killed him in cold blood.
    My hope is that Mr. Martinez can make mincemeat of her in his cross examination. Does he get to present a rebuttal case? If so, I hope that there will be witnesses as well who can refute the things she is saying on the stand and give examples of her stalking. Can't that come out at that point?
    I pray that the jury is not buying the lies this sick, psychopath is telling and that they have the wisdom to see the truth. I hope that there is justice for Travis, and some measure of solace for his family and friends.




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    1. I totally agree that the upcoming Mexico trip may have been the catalyst for this murder. Arias didn't know that Marie "Mimi" Hall was not interested romantically in Travis, so she probably had visions of them falling in love in Cancun. The timing of this killing is suspect, just days before that trip! Sure, maybe Travis wasn't as "devout" of a Mormon that he portrayed himself to be. But if he was emotionally abusing and she felt SO USED, why did she continue to go back to Mesa? Why steal the gun and lie about it? Too many things point to premeditation here and her lack of injuries compared to his says this WAS NOT a fair fight! I think Mr. Martinez will mop the floor with her when he gets his shot at her. He's vigorously taking notes! Don't know if they will be able to get any "stalking" testimony in - but at least Lisa (Andrews) Daidone mentioned her creepy experiences with Arias coming into Travis's home when she was there, and the time when Travis was at her house, and somebody opened the door at hers. She wasn't able to specifically mention the tire slashing because Arias was never charged in connection with that. But Lisa Daidone did tell the jury "weird things were happening" to Travis when they were together. The jury should be smart enough to give the appropriate consideration to what the law says about the use of self defense. This was a slaughter - pure and simple. Thanks for commenting!

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  6. I'm not aware of what the Judge ruled, if at all, in regard to the showing of any more graphic autopsy photos. I ask this because I am thinking ahead to the possibility of Martinez doing so when he finally cross examines Arias. Either way, was it a misstep for him to have already used one for shock effect, when it would have possibly served that purpose better when Jodi is on the stand? Bad timing, in hindsight? What do you think?

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  7. Hello, I believe the jury was shown the autopsy photos during the prosecution case. When Martinez flashed the photo of Travis's throat up on the screen while Lisa Daidone was on the witness stand, he referred to it as exhibit # XXX. If it hadn't already been admitted, the judge and defense attorney would've been shown that photo first and then it would've been entered into evidence. I agree the timing of showing that photo was poor. His family and friends and the witness on the stand had no warning! I think his point was to bring home the comparison that the witness had issues with Travis in their relationship, and she didn't kill him - she broke off the relationship. He could've conveyed the point without that photo though. Thanks for your comments!

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Thank you for commenting!