Phoenix, AZ- As the beginning of the second full week of testimony in the State of Arizona v Jodi Arias unfolds we learn some of the most damning evidence against Arias. We also learned that there are clearly holes in the prosecution’s case. Not referring to the holes on visual display last week-in HD, unfortunately.
The very intimate and anatomical chronology of the afternoon of June 4th 2008 leading to the brutal and merciless murder of Travis Victor Alexander included the very carnal and the very barbaric.
A few frames of images deleted from Travis’s camera and a few minutes of time stamped consternation and Alexander ends up stuffed in his own shower.
Kill or be killed was the impetus for this tragedy Arias’s defense promises us in their opening curtsy.
There can be no doubt that Jodi Arias was present the day of the murder, and by her own admission she killed Travis in self defense. By my rough calculations, that would mean under one stab wound per minute plus a gunshot and near decapitation. Travis was 5’9” tall and 189 lbs after nearly total blood loss.
Dr. Kevin Horn Is No Dr. G
The fact that Dr. Horn, forensic pathologist for Maricopa County looks freakishly like Robe Lowe with facial hair aside- he now says that Travis Alexander could not have been shot first. According To Detective Esteban Flores, lead investigator in the case, he was told differently by Horn in telephonic conversations in August 2009. Horn denies he ever said this and Flores gets hung out to dry. A rinse and repeat will not help the prosecution. Horn went on to say that since the bullet passed through the front lobe of Alexander’s brain that he would likely have been rendered unconscious and it may have occurred after his death.
There is no medical evidence to substantiate this. There is no physical evidence to corroborate this, and in fact, it WILL be argued that evidence contradicts this opinion. Dr. Horn could produce no findings of the projectile pathway outside of its final location in the left maxilla. This was definitely not a close contact wound and it produced no star-shaped entry, soot or stippling. The casing of a .25 caliber bullet was found on the floor of the bathroom in a pool of blood believed to be deposited there prior.
Is this opinion outside the scope of submitted evidence AND theory? Horn was an effective witness as to autopsy and wound identification. Travis Alexander fought for his life at least for a few seconds and the gaping wounds to his hands indicate he grabbed for the knife at some point. I found it particularly interesting that he was not asked to speculate on what type of sharp blade might fit the incised wound approximations. Travis Alexander was stabbed 29 times, shot and his throat was slashed.
Editor’s Note: Jodi Arias is left-handed as is Travis Alexander. There is much in the way of fodder to feed incident reconstruction in his report as well as the blood spatter and pooling evidence neither Horn nor Perry were ever asked about.
Esteban Flores Does His Own Stunts
Detective Flores played his own stunt man in this case. His phone interviews and interrogations of Jodi Arias are impressive.
He brought his A game. A for Alexander as he would tell you himself.
His case interrogation skills in this case might ultimately be what convicts this woman and his lessons in patience and diligence should be topics in investigative training for homicide detectives everywhere.
So why the stunt man status?
Because he came into the case on 2 wheels based on the Medical Examiner testimony which I happen to believe accurately shaped the detectives testimony in both the Conus hearing and this trial. Defense counsel Nurmi as well as Prosecutor Martinez eviscerated Flores on his previous testimony regarding Travis’ wound sequencing and Flores was accused of perjuring himself in a motion that is still before the court. Ouch.
Rarely do you see a detective take a cross examination and subsequent motion for dismissal containing the words “perjury” on such a sturdy chin. He took one for the team and he took one for Alexander and the Mesa Police Department is lucky to have him.
And NO, his name does not sound like all other Hispanic names (how offensive was that?) Unfortunately after his testimony this afternoon the shine is off the penny a bit. The jurors submitted questions to Flores while on the stand today through Judge Stephens and it was clear by the tone of them this jury is not eating what the prosecution is serving.
Flores was dejected and sullen when answering the juror questions. He knew.
Juan In The Box
Prosecutor Juan Martinez has an excellent tailor. He is excitable and apparently not a fan of cross examination of state witnesses. By re-direct he is out of the box the defense has been winding up and pop goes the weasel is in the form of evidence he tossed on the floor.
This actually happened.
In his Ad hoc demonstrative aid or improper display as alleged by defense attorney Jennifer Wilmott, Martinez tosses the camera on the floor to the collective spectator reaction “ What the snap??”
Pun intended. Juan Martinez is an effective prosecutor who knows his case well. Where the problem comes in is that his own witnesses are not sure what he is asking them, and he is not putting the issues he already knows will be in contention with the defense out there first. If that scene does not find its way to an auto tune I will be surprised.
Editors Note: Arias is lefty. The button that broke during examination by Detective Melendez and if it had not been already, definitely by Martinez, is located on the right of the camera. It is more likely Arias changed the mode to auto on the camera and that began the successive picture taking. Was it on the strap so she was then hands free? The shower door opens to the right and the person snapping the images at the time Alexander first becomes wounded is very close to his level. Point is- there is much in the way of probative value in the operation of this camera and a simultaneous attack or altercation. Arias receives a cut to her left finger at some point.
A well- intentioned but intransigent message to Mr. Martinez: Pre-emptive is the new appellate repellent.
With daily motions for dismissal and mistrial alleging prosecutorial misconduct and the prosecutor firing a piece of material evidence into the podium- is the writing on the wall on this one?
Martinez is wearing a pace pattern into the carpet in front of the prosecution’s table and the defense is wearing matching hues daily.
To borrow the words of Sweet Brown, “Ain’t Nobody Got Time For Dat”.
Taking a page out of the book of The State of Florida V Casey M Anthony would benefit Mr. Martinez immensely . That said, Mr. Martinez has been known to change it up with a lesser included in that “other” Mormon murder.
Hello…… N U R M I
Say it like Seinfeld would. Kirk Nurmi , while not big on the fashion forward movement, belies his posture and gets the no slouch designation in this trial.
Nurmi misses nothing and his assessment of The Honorable Sherri K Stephens and her courtroom etiquette are spot on.
Nurmi is artful and deliberate. If there is a credible defense to this case he is establishing the predicate for it or a weighty appeal. He is ambi-lawyerous. One senses he sees the holes and knows it is also his job to backfill. In a trial involving such a heinous murder and downright chilling images, the fact that he refuses to tuck the tail of his shirt in the back gives us a necessary chuckle when he is at the podium.
Jennifer Wilmott, the public defender’s representative is intentionally disarming to witnesses for the first few minutes but gave herself away when she corrected Dr. Horn by reminding him of a puncture to the Vena Cava sustained by Alexander. She enunciated it perfectly and with feeling- as if the boots had not given her away earlier.
She leaves her Coach satchel in plain view next to the bailiff door all day. She knows the drill.
Death On a Reel
There was video of the sexual encounter between Travis and Jodi on June 4, 2008. It was deleted according to her and not recoverable per Detective Flores.
What was recovered in both the flash drive and un-allocated space on the SD card of Travis’s camera were like a Kubrick draft. Lust, contentment, fear, crescendo, gore. Did I just see that?
It is all there to view as if one is having some sort of synapse misfire that only allows brief images.
There is a clear and distinct mutual trust between Arias and Alexander before 2 PM on June 4, 2008.
What changed and for whom?
Explicit and sexually graphic images were displayed in open court. Noteworthy items would include that Ms. Arias has had breast augmentation and a very recent pseudo-invasive waxing. Mr. Alexander is apparently not fond of body hair himself. It appeared Travis was less comfortable posing nude for Arias then she for him.
Nothing Says Bonding Like Duct Tape
Travis Alexander clearly has duct tape around his right arm in the explicit pics. Although the shower images are approximately 4 hours later- the marks from it are fresh. Not that the medical examiner nor the prosecution has bothered to reference it or it’s possible connection to the events.
The duct tape found on the tile floor , evidence marker #40 may just be the clue from the glue that provides motive in this case .
Outside Marriage, Sex’s Emotional Bond:
However, outside of marriage, this bond still occurs. The emotional bond is a part of sex, it’s always present, whether we like it or not. But, this extremely tight emotional bond is not such a good thing outside of marriage. Here’s why…(DO NOT remove the duct tape until you describe the break-up of the relationship)
So let’s say that I’m 16 years old (use yourself as an example, not the volunteer) and I choose to ignore God’s plan for sex and chastity and decide that since my boyfriend and I are in love and we’re a serious couple, we’ll have sex. (rub the duct tape in even more, as you continue to talk). Things are going real well, are hearts are real close – like this duct tape here – and then…he starts to get on my nerves, so, we break up. (quickly tear off the tape)
I am not one to believe in coincidence and this case is no different. When Casey Anthony was leading OCSO detectives to her imaginary office at Universal, Arias we being booked. Anthony was arrested the next day. It does make the case for simultaneous bi-coastal mind control. Watching and listening to Arias spin her detailed faux-fession was surreal in comparison.
White Knit-Rental Guy
Raphael Columbo took the only opportunity to ever where a bulky knit in Arizona. During direct examination by Martinez we learned that Arias may have been with a gentleman while renting the vehicle. Columbo also testified the floor mats to the new-ish vehicle were missing when Arias returned it late and that he personally cleaned what he thought was kool-aid stains from the passenger and rear seats.
Yes- he legitimately stated he saw and cleaned kool aid stains in the rental vehicle used by a woman accused of stabbing and shooting a man and neither the prosecutor nor the defense attorney asked him what kind of kool-aid stains they were. Lime? Fruit Punch? Grape? Would seem germane to the discussion, no?
Martinez also neglected to ask him about the notation of a heavy smoke smell.
Arias does not smoke. But she did buy kerosene on June 3rd at Walmart. She dyed her hair brown sometime between the evening of June 2nd and the morning of June 3rd.
Me thinks Mr. Columbo is going have another chance to don that turtleneck again before this trial is over.
Following the excuse of the jury this afternoon Nurmi raised the issue yet again, of possible Brady violations in the case by Martinez for not producing the contact information for the woman who was allegedly dating Alexander and received a John Doe email from Arias. It is believed Julie Andrews was aware of at least the allegation that Arias followed the couple on a date and subsequently slashed his tires. Andrews was not on the list of state witnesses.
The State of Arizona V Jodi Arias continues tomorrow.
Jacqueline Beaufort, contributing editor