Jodi Arias turned down her last chance to plead her case directly to the jury on Monday.  Arias told the judge she wanted to speak to jurors, in what is known as the allocution phase, but only in a closed courtroom without the public or media.  The Judge ruled that she could not be allowed a closed proceeding because the Arizona Court of Appeals already forbid it.

“You cannot allocute in a sealed proceeding,” Stephens told Arias.

“Not in an open proceeding, no,” Arias replied.

The 34-year-old woman from California was convicted in 2013 for the murder of her ex-boyfriend Travis Alexander in 2008.  Arias claimed self-defense, but the jury sided with the prosecution.  However, the jury was unable to agree on sentencing, prompting a second sentencing proceeding.

In other news, two more jurors were dismissed from the Arias case, but no explanation was given.  This leaves 12 jurors and 2 alternates.  If the jury again deadlocks, there will be no mistrial.  Instead, the death penalty will be eliminated as a possible sentence and Judge Stephens will decide whether Arias should be given life with or without parole.

Starting today, jurors are hearing closing arguments from both sides.

Prosecutors say that Arias attacked her ex-boyfriend in a jealous rage after he wanted to end their relationship and over the fact that he had already planned a vacation with another woman.  Arias has acknowledged killing Alexander, but said it was in self-defense.  The new sentencing phase revealed basically no new details about the crime and was much more low key than the salacious media circus that the trial turned into.  At least three mitigation witnesses for the defense refused to testify before the jury for fear of public reprisal.

The sentencing phase which lasted two more months than expected is winding down.  Members of the current jury were selected from more than 400 potential jurors.

  1. George says:

    “basically” is a word to avoid I think. A summary of significant new evidence:

    – Alexander’s laptop was used to access pornography, contrary to the claim of the prosecution in the first trial.

    – Travis downloaded child pornography in January 2001 while living with Mormon Bishop in Riverside, underming the prosecution accusation that Arias lied about seeing Travis masturbating over a picture of a boy dressed in underwear.

    – The same witness says he saw Travis being abusive to Deanna Reid

    – Walmart witness Amanda Webb has admitted she doesn’t know if records moved intact when the Walmart store relocated in 2010.


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