Jodi Arias and her defense team met with prosecutor Juan Martinez and retired Superior Court Judge James Keppel on October 24, 2013 for the mysterious settlement conference. No progress or deals were reached during the conference, and Judge Keppel assigned the case back to Judge Sherry Stephens for resolution. And so it appears that Arias will be heading back into court for the highly anticipated penalty phase retrial she's been hoping to avoid since her the first one ended in a mistrial.
Here we go again! Judge Sherry Stephens has had numerous motions that have been on the table for months that she has yet to rule on - let's hope she does so at the next scheduled hearing on November 1, 2013 so we can begin the jury selection process! We can bet that once the motions on change of venue, cameras in the courtroom, juror social media account disclosure etc. have been ruled on - the jury selection process will be lengthy. I've been saying this all along, but it looks like Arias is going to get the "early 2014" trial delay they have been gunning for since late May. Shouldn't this case be history by now?
The only real "news" to come out lately is that Arias is trying to fire lead attorney Kirk Nurmi - although that's not really NEW news. It's no secret that Nurmi seems to have been disconnected from the case for some time now. But until now, it was hard to tell if that was just Nurmi sulking over the defense motions that were being denied, losing the case or if he really meant what he said during his closing statement about not liking Jodi Arias 9 out of 10 days himself. It appears the feeling is mutual. Arias wrote a 12 page hand-written letter to Judge Sherry Stephens, asking her again to allow her to "fire" Nurmi as the lead attorney in her case. Judge Stephens has denied Nurmi and Willmott's requests to withdraw from the case, but this time it's Arias who wants Nurmi off her case! Wait a minute....didn't she write a letter before begging the Judge to keep Nurmi on her case, saying that nobody knew the case as well as he did back when Nurmi wanted his hourly rate to be higher since he was no longer working at the Public Defender's office?
Well, well, well. Has it come full circle yet? Arias blasted Nurmi this time: "utter poverty of people skills", and saying Nurmi has "little tolerance for my emotional and psychological shortcomings". For example, she cited Nurmi's lack of empathy over her emotional reaction that the now infamous phone-sex audio tape that was played for the jury, the courtroom and eventually the public, despite Arias' wishes for it to NOT be played for the television viewing public. She shouldn't have taped that phone call to begin with, just my opinion! Arias does have kind words for Jennifer Willmott however, who she believes bore the brunt of the work load in her case. Has Kirk Nurmi seen Jodi Arias since the mistrial, and does that really matter? I don't see many scenarios in which Judge Stephens would allow either Arias attorney to walk away from the case at this late stage. That would set the trial back, and it's unnecessary.
The re-trial can't start fast enough for my liking. I want to see this case resolved. What will Judge Stephens decide? Will she move the trial to another venue, or bus in jurors from another county? Will there be cameras in the courtroom for this phase? Will jurors be forced to disclose their personal social media and Twitter information, and if so, who will monitor the usage? PS - I hope they monitor Jodi Arias' Twitter activity as well. Will Kirk Nurmi and Jennifer Willmott continue on as Jodi Arias' defense team? Will this trial ever end, or rather will it ever START? Why doesn't Arias have any family or friends speaking up for her in the courtroom? Where are those mitigation witnesses? Wouldn't you know it, Ms. Arias is now asking for donations for her APPEALS! Yes, that's right...."I'm filing for bankruptcy" but "send me money for my appeals". While you're at it, wanna buy a t-shirt or piece of original artwork?
Just when you thought you'd seen it all.