Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Juan Martinez vs. Jodi Arias - The Battle Continues

The sparring between 32 year old murder defendant Jodi Arias and Arizona State Prosecutor Juan Martinez continued for the third full day today as Martinez chipped away at Arias's memory issues and her truthfulness to law enforcement, family, friends and even Travis Alexander. Today's testimony has gone fairly uninterrupted with not as many sidebars and the reviewing of documents as we've seen the past 2 days.

Martinez bounced around a bit, but he wasn't hard to follow. He went back in time to one of Arias's earliest relationships with "Bobby", someone she talked about a lot during direct. That relationship ended after Arias found out he had or was cheating on her. Martinez focused on the fact that even at that point in her life, Arias was reading Bobby's e-mail without his permission and that's how she found out about the infidelity. The point:  this wasn't new behavior when she began looking through Travis Alexander's text messages or reading the e-mails in his MySpace page. Arias actually has a pattern of this type of distrustful behavior. This was another important point.

Martinez again questioned Arias about her problems remembering things that may hurt her case and having a great recall for things that could help her. Arias responded by saying that Martinez's tone and "posture" was effecting her and "making her brain scramble". That's the second time she's used that phrase about the prosecutor. Martinez pressed on despite the verbal sparring. He played clips from the 48 Hours Mystery interview Arias gave back in 2008, where Arias said of Travis Alexander "he was a bright light, he brightened the room when he entered it, the laughter got louder...".  In the interview, she tells the interviewer how generous Travis was to her, and how she would have no motive to harm him. She said Travis was generous, opened up his home to her and others, and even opened his refrigerator to her when she couldn't afford food.

Juan Martinez pointed out that Jodi Arias has given two distinctly different portrayals of Travis Alexander. She replied that "Travis flourished on compliments", implying that was the reason she wrote such flattering text messages to him. She really has no way to explain these text messages and journal entries, since none of them are argumentative, discuss any fighting or arguing and certainly don't discuss any alleged problem Travis had with inappropriate attractions to young boys or girls! 

Martinez discussed how their sexual relationship was completely mutual and consensual, despite Arias stating on direct examination that she felt "like a piece of used toilet paper", or "I kinda felt like a prostitute". He entered a text message into evidence from Jodi Arias to Travis Alexander from 1/8/08 that said: "I want to give you a bj and you give me a generous facial in return".  Wow, this seems to really contradict how Arias portrayed these acts and the effect they had on her during direct examination - many times she testified that Travis's aggressive sexual behavior made her uncomfortable and she complied to please him.  Martinez really did a great job using Jodi Arias's own words to contradict many things she said previously!  This shows she was not quite as innocent as she would have us believe and paints a completely different portrait of her participation in these acts.

Earlier today Martinez entered into evidence a message Arias wrote to Travis on something that was put together for his memorial service in Mesa. I thought they said it was photo, with a letter or message from Jodi to Travis but I'm not positive. The message to Travis included "Travis, you are beautiful inside and out" - Juan Martinez asked her "so you think somebody who masturbates to photos of young boys is beautiful on the inside and out"? Arias replied "no, that part of him was sickening". The letter goes on to say "you always told me that I never stopped believing in you, and you never stopped believing in me. Thank you for sharing so much with me and thank you for all of your generosity".

I think the general consensus is "how could you show up to a memorial service for a person you killed"?  Arias insists that she was there because she and Travis had discussed giving eulogies for each other. I doubt this is what Travis Alexander had in mind - having his killer sitting among his family and friends. I believe Jodi Arias was more concerned how it would look (to law enforcement) if she wasn't at the memorial service. They would figure she had a guilty conscious. Arias actually spoke to Marie "Mimi" Hall at that memorial service, and Arias claims that she didn't know for sure that Hall was supposed to go to Cancun with Alexander until that day. Until then, she claims to have believed Travis was taking the "babysitter" of one of his friends. She also testified today that it didn't bother her that Travis wasn't taking her, nor had he asked her to go. That was never the plan.

They are taking the afternoon break now, but again - another good day for the prosecution.  Martinez continues to break down some of the tales Arias told during her direct examination where she portrayed herself as someone who couldn't say no to Travis Alexander, who submitted to his deviant sexual desires and never told a soul because she didn't want to hurt Travis's reputation - even at her own expense.  Nothing has been presented, aside from Arias's word that comes close to showing prior abuse at the hands of Travis Alexander. I do realize that victims of domestic violence often times don't report the abuse to law enforcement out of fear - but they usually tell somebody. A friend, a hotline - a Bishop? Certainly they would be free to write about it in their journal or diary. She didn't. Rather, on the dates she claims these events occurred, her journal entries and text messages show just the opposite. No confrontation or talk of confrontation, no apologies from either side - just regular conversation between two people. 

I'd be concerned if I were Jennifer Willmott and Kirk Nurmi. You can see how much Nurmi dislikes Juan Martinez by the way he looks at him. Update to follow after court concludes for the day!  Stay tuned......

**UPDATE**
Court was recessed early today - testimony will resume tomorrow morning. After the jury was excused, defense attorney Kirk Nurmi told the judge that the Sheriff's office had not been providing Jodi Arias with a lunch and asked that they make arrangements to be sure she had food provided to her. He also asked that the court day end as scheduled at 4:30PM (I thought it did....), apparently Ms. Arias suffers from migraine headaches, and I'm not sure if that's the reason for the early day today.  My questions would then be:

1) Is today the first day Jodi Arias didn't have lunch provided to her? She's been in court since January 2.  If this was an issue, why didn't they address it at the very beginning?

2) If Jennifer Willmott & Kirk Nurmi were aware Arias wasn't being provided a lunch during this trial, wouldn't they have simply bought her a sandwich or lunch? I'm assuming they both have lunch each day.....

3) Will the "food factor" become a motion for mistrial? The defense has tried several other tactics to delay or throw out this case - and to have the death penalty taken off the table. Is a lack of food effecting Jodi Arias's memory, or her ability to tell the truth??


Odd, but that's par for the course for this trial!  See you tomorrow....enjoy your evening!

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