There are far more certainties than mysteries in the Travis Alexander homicide.
For example, it’s known that Jodi Arias murdered Travis Alexander in cold blood, that she spent a considerable amount of time planning and executing the homicide and covering it up. She in fact spent years obfuscating her crime with a variety of tall tales. Jodi Arias will spend the rest of her life in prison for this crime. These are facts.
They had a tumultuous relationship; that’s a fact. Travis was ambivalent about it but remained to some degree involved with her; another fact. This trial costs Arizona taxpayers, of which I am one, millions of dollars; another fact. Avoiding the death penalty, she saves AZ and Federal taxpayers more millions of dollars; yet another fact.
There are a few mysteries left. Did Travis know she came to his home that night to kill him? Where did she dump her weapons? What was the killer intending to do with the gun she had hidden in her rental car when she was arrested? Where/how did she dye her hair enroute on her murder trip?
And now one more has been added to that short list.
Why did Juror 17 lie to get on that jury before refusing to effectively deliberate, thus saving Jodi Arias from the Death Penalty?
With new information coming to light this weekend, I’ve formed a distinct opinion which is that Juror 17 in the Jodi Arias retrial was, by definition, a stealth juror.
A stealth juror or rogue juror is a person who, motivated by a hidden agenda in reference to a legal case, attempts to be seated on the jury and to influence the outcome.
(that’s actually an interesting wikipedia: read here )
Once it was uncovered after she single handedly hung the sentencing retrial jury, that the flamboyant prosecutor Juan Martinez had actually prosecuted her first husband and sent him to prison, the alarm bells started blaring in my head.
There was discussion online whether this revealed something about that juror and her disclosure prior to being seated. What questions were asked of her, was she lying by omission or flat out lying or confused about the questioning process?
Now it’s clear, she was flat out lying but the question is why? And the second question is, what charges are going to be filed against her for lying to get on a high profile trial?
Of course since the scales of
injustice always swing toward murderers defendants, this will bear no consequence to the lying conniving butcher Jodi Arias who benefited by this stealth juror’s agenda. I also know that if Jodi had in fact been sentenced to death and some kind of egregious juror misconduct like this were uncovered after the fact, it not only would be appealed on ad to the point of nauseum but, she’d likely be afforded a new trial over it.
I was once interviewed for the prospect of jury duty in the very courthouse where Jodi Arias was tried. I did my duty on that rainy morning, took the day off work, drove downtown, found parking and walked in the rain in to the “holding room” and waited waited waited. My name was called to appear in a courtroom. It was a sex crime. I was shuttled in to the jury box with 11 others to be questioned in voir dire about my possibility to serve.
Now let’s be clear on something right now. I will never serve on a jury where a victim of any kind is involved. I’m biased and I know it. I don’t consider this any kind of character flaw or something to be ashamed of or “worked on”. It’s in my makeup now after having navigated the system as a victim for over 25 years now. I have zero objectivity and I’m ok with that. I would be a great juror for the State and a terrible juror for the defense. Let me just say it, as a natural leader I’d be a great foreperson but with no objectivity whatsoever. Your basic nightmare. I’d never try and pass myself as anything other than I am. A biased victim in the system who knows some things and one thing I know is that is NOT easy to convict an obviously guilty person.
The Judge opened the questioning by going through all of the players–starting with himself–asking us to raise a hand if we knew anyone in the courtroom. When he got to the prosecutor I’d already eyeballed her and smiled inside. I remembered a weekend a few months prior where we had worked on a team together–a team remodeling another prosecutor’s bathroom. In fact it was our prosecutor Cathy Hughes.
Remember when that show Trading Spaces was in full swing? Well Cathy and I cooked up a plan one night to do a fast inexpensive redo on her guest bath and we had an absolute ball. She gave us $800 I believe and we added wainscoting, paint, a new sink, a corner cabinet, lighting and a new mirror. She assembled a team of her friends and about 5 or 6 of us participated over a long weekend. It was a blast.
And close quarters as we took turns moving in and out of that small space performing our various tasks.
I looked to the prosecution table and there was Jeanette–one of the women on that team. I remember her well because she was a bit bossy and got in an argument with another defense attorney over something like what tool to use for what. I found it all pretty funny and entertaining and I’ll never forget her.
“Do any of you know the prosecutor?” he asked and my hand shot right up.
The Judge looked at me with surprise like “oh really?” and I’m not sure Jeanette even recognized me.
“How do you know the prosecutor?” he queried.
“I did a Trading Spaces remodel on another prosecutor’s bathroom awhile back and she was part of the team”.
(I still find that moment funny)
I don’t know how he kept a straight face and I did note a twinkle in his eye as he released me. I think I heard a few sighs as I slipped out the door being set free.
And I took that rainy day to go to the movies.
In all seriousness, had it gotten past that phase I would have honestly admitted that I have no objectivity in a trial where a victim is involved because of my extensive past with the judicial system and violent crime. That I would not naturally be able to objectively consider the defense’s case and that’s just the truth. The unabashed and unashamed truth.
As I’d gone through that process myself in that very courthouse I was familiar with the protocol and was very suspicious of Juror 17. How could she not have raised her hand when asked if she knew the prosecutor and he was the very person who sent her first husband to prison? Let’s face it, Juan Martinez no shrinking violet. The fierceness which blasts from his diminutive stature alone is memorable. Plus he’s been in the news for years on this trial. How could she not remember him? Or claim she didn’t “know” him?
(I ran in to him in the airport after the trial and we had a nice visit. He’s always been very friendly and supportive to me. Trust me, I was not the only person who recognized him either)
She did not raise her hand because she was lying, I believe. She did not do what any reasonable person in her circumstance would do that day; any reasonable honest person I mean. Instead, she chose to stay mute.
It has now come to light that this initial questioning “do you know the prosecutor?” was not only asked but there is video confirmation it was asked.
“I see no show of hands” Judge Stevens confirms as this stealth juror sat there in silence, hands down by her body, withholding this secret, thinking/feeling what?
(this poster was created by @jodimindtricks on twitter and I handed a poster style quality copy of it to Juan Martinez the day he handed down his closing argument in the first trial- he loved it)
Juror 17 chose to remain on that arduous jury for months and she chose to refuse to actually openly and actively participate with her fellow jurors when the time came down to get busy.
The question remains: why?
What was in it for her? What is in it for her?
I think simple revenge is just that: a simplistic answer.
I have some forming opinions that relate to co-dependence, manipulation, women who are drawn to felons (she has married two of them we know) and opportunism. I will keep those to myself for now, until more information may come to light in the coming weeks and months.
What I know for sure is an investigation is demanded and a consequence is in order. If she gets away with this unchecked and unexplained then this adds another rotten cherry to the top of the shit sundae of the Arias trial. Not to mention the message it sends to other potential agenda’d jurors. And we paid for it. All of us taxpayers here in Arizona paid for every last dime of it, including the paltry per diem this stealth juror received at our expense.
This isn’t some John Grisham novel–this is real life and my (and your) real money. Real victims, real murder, real abuse of the system.
She’s made her own mess. As I addressed in my open letter, she has created an interesting consequence of her own. It will become a secret in her life, one that was extremely traumatizing to her fellow jurors and I suspect her, that she won’t easily be able to talk openly about. Ever.
The rest of her peers will be able to openly speak to their friends/family/coworkers/reporters about their experience on this arduous jury over all those months. The frustration, the agony, the PTSD they are still suffering from those images and having to confront evil like that month after month.
Juror 17‘s land of opportunities to process all of this are very very slim.
Then again, she will have Maria De La Rosa, Kirk Nurmi, Jennifer Willmott, one local reporter who championed for Arias and of course the murderess herself should she need a shoulder to cry on.
Good luck with that Juror 17.
I will say this, if anyone pays her one red cent for any interview or even one word as apparently her felonious husband has been requesting, there will be a consequence.
Even if it’s just right here on this blog spouting my opinions for victims, true victims everywhere, this will not go unchecked. Before anyone has a cow, my only weapon is my keyboard but I do use it with abandon when it’s a cause I feel passionately about. Usually this is related to how victims are treated-at least that’s my cause for now.
I look forward to hearing more about what’s been done about this assault to the jury system in my County. The place I live and work and expect to be protected and safe.
I guess she’s going public with an interview tonight on my local news. I’ll be setting my DVR with interest. I’m suspicious for sure. I’m sure she’s lawyered up. I’m sure she has some after-the-fact
bullshit explanation. I’m curious about who her lawyer is–if it’s a certain entertainment lawyer who’s been following this case, then all bets are off.
And I’ll be curious about who is interviewing her too. Lots of weird stuff with certain local reporters with one at the helm of that Nasty Ship of Fools.
Lots of certainties in this trial and to that list, Jodi Arias and her supporters were not devoid of local media support.
I’m keeping my eye on that too.
If We the People who are paying to keep our communities just and safe lose the ability to speak out about it…well, let’s just say we’re not going to. Lose that ability. At least I’m not.