more arias insanity

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Just finished watching the latest Jodi Arias nonsense. While I’m in the midst of poring over records for our case. I don’t think people realize the extent that the worst of the worst in our society keep getting the best of the best legal assistance, at our expense. I mean that literally, you and I who pay taxes are paying for these fees to champion her — as well as the rest of the monsters like her.

The Apelt brothers got to plead “mentally retarded” flying in the face of the extensive plotting and planning and conning they did their entire adult lives. That cost taxpayers–you and me–at least TEN MILLION DOLLARS and it worked for one of them who was released from death row due to this ridiculousness. How insulting to those who are actually mentally retarded and their loved ones who can barely find services for them–or have to pay out of pocket.

Yet, I still think Arias is the most virulent and dangerous murderer I’ve ever seen. Andstill, seasoned attorneys champion her pleas–like a deeply toxic virus infecting everything that gets anywhere near it.

Her lawyers are arguing for a new trial for Arias, pointing out behavior the prosecutor did OUTSIDE of the courtroom as reason for this. Also, some of his questioning tactics of witnesses.

She wants a new trial for this, yet Travis was raked over the coals by her in the trial–called a rapist and pedophile by her attorneys throughout the several month trial–with the absolute only supporting evidence for these claims coming from the murderer herself.

The State, nor the victims, get no appeals for this heinous conduct, or ways the defense witnesses behaved totally inappropriately. I saw some of that with my own eyes.
But the murderers burden the system for decades, dredging up detail after detail demanding sympathetic and costly responses.

It makes me ill and I will keep writing about it. She didn’t even get the death penalty (which escalates this nonsense exponentially–to the tune of MILLIONS OF OUR DOLLARS) and still this circus she continues to ringmaster from prison.

Yeah, it pisses me off.

back to the book

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Hi All,

I’m back in Edmonds WA again for a month with the intention to finish my book. I’m documenting this process along the way over at my other blog if you’d like to follow along.

I’m also reading Juan Martinez’ book about convicting Jodi Arias and making some observations about that too. Would love it if you’d share yours as well.

I’ll be pretty absent from this blog but very active on the other one for the next 4 weeks so feel free to join me there!

Today’s entry here.

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final chapter–thank you travis alexander

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I got up Monday morning like any other day and like no other day. I felt the same apprehension I felt the day I headed to downtown Phoenix that first day I attended the Jodi Arias trial in early January 2013. Nervous, not knowing what I was going to face, but confident I needed to go.

I gathered my things together including a stack of letters I’d prepared to give all of Travis Alexander’s siblings, his Aunt and some friends. Just as every day I attended of the first trial, I was not going to walk in there empty handed. I thought long and hard about how I wanted to bring this to closure. The first day I sat with the family, after being invited by their victim advocate, I carried a letter offering my support specifically around victim impact statements. It was one tangible thing I knew I could help them with having written and delivered my own and having some basic skills in the writing department.

Mine was published here.

One of Travis’ siblings had reached out to me with questions about writing their statement so I knew, more than anything, that I needed to be there to support them being delivered. I had read an article online for the second time that I found very clear and descriptive about grief and I know some things about this moment they are facing so I decided to share it with each and every one. You can read it yourself here:

5 Lies You Were Told about Grief

I also wrote a letter sharing what was in my heart and off I went with my blue sweater, my angel pin Tanisha had given me, the blue ribbon still on display in my cabinet and my elephant ring. I also carried the natural trepidation of walking in to a situation where you don’t know what kind of mine fields you might run in to.

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I had decided last year to not attend the second retrial although I’d been there almost every day for the first go round. It was for entirely personal reasons that I don’t feel the need to get in to. I still supported the family in my own way from afar and feel good about my decision and role.

Things were also catapulting in my own life which, on reflection,  came as a direct result from all of the events and miracles that happened because I decided to step in that first day.

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I posted ardently on the Websleuths forum each day I came home from trial. Some days that was at midnight as a typical day looked like — go to work in the morning–rush to the courthouse after eating lunch in my car–attend afternoon session–go to the hotel nearby for a wind down after court–go visit my brother in the hospital (he was hospitalized twice during those months)–run by his house to check his cat–finally get home late at night and do my “reporting”.

I know many of you out there reading me right now know me from that time. We were all on that roller coaster together. I couldn’t have done it if not for the support from the web out there holding me up. I don’t regret any of it.

After the trial was over, I got a mysterious message on Websleuths from an editor that simply said “you should pursue writing”. I asked her what I should do and she pointed me toward WordPress and some other suggestions and support so here I am. Through this endeavor, I decided to also pursue writing my memoir. I took a sabbatical and wrote 30 chapters last Fall and am still working on it. I hope to have it completed this year.

I’m working on it here on my other blog Middle Child.

I had been thinking of this for years but I finally realized I had a story to tell so that set me on course–one of healing through tragedy but you still have to tell the tragedy story. That’s also the one I’d been avoiding. I can deal with it now. I also had to live the healing.

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Through the writing journey I was invited to join a private online writing group. And that’s where I met the love of my life. We are getting married in less than 3 weeks. I credit all of this newness and evolving to having the courage to walk in to that courtroom the first day and go on the journey it took me. We never know where our pivots lie.

I drove down Monday to the same parking lot I’d used for months. As I walked out, nervous, I passed Jodi Arias’ mother pulling in. Talk about timing. I doubt she recognized me but I recognized her.

As I walked in the building, Jennifer Wilmott held the door open for me. She is Jodi Arias’ attorney. It was all quite surreal.

I had not attended the several months of the last go round nor had I really arranged attending Monday–I basically just showed up. I went up the same elevator I’d ridden in with Juan Martinez one day and introduced myself. Once I landed on the 5th floor I saw many familiar faces–Travis’ friends Chris and Sky Hughes, reporter Beth Karas, 3 jurors who had served on the first trial. It was great, and poignant seeing these faces.

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Shortly we were taken in to the victim ante room adjacent the courtroom. I ended up viewing the proceedings from that room along side the 3 jurors and one of Travis’ friends Pam who I’d met many times in court the first go round.

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The victim room has it’s own bathroom, table in the middle and large viewing flat screen on the wall with chairs lined all around the room. Travis’ family was milling through going to the bathroom and understandably nervously walking around.  This was a big day for them. I got some hugs (including from Juan Martinez) and met some new people. One of whom, Tanisha’s friend, was there with her little baby, likely around 6 mths old. She had a seat in the courtroom so we offered to watch her baby while the hearing took place.

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He was such a good little baby, only crying once as the family delivered their statements and we all watched, standing, in the victim room. We were lucky in that our view was from a camera behind the Judge’s head facing to the back. This meant we had a rare view of the faces of all those speaking. I found out later this was not the view that was publicly televised. I’m glad that Pam and I just intuitively snapped some photos of the screen because they ended up being valuable later to those who didn’t see that view. It all felt very surreal, knowing this was the day this entire thing ends, for the most part. It ends primarily because Arias did NOT receive the death penalty.

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On a break, the baby’s mom came in and put him in a little kangaroo type pouch on her body. He fell quickly asleep. She decided to go ahead in to the courtroom for the last leg of the hearing with him just like that–asleep in the pouch. Once Jodi Arias got up to speak her unimaginably cruel words, that little innocent baby started to cry. Imagine that. A baby getting disturbed from slumber by that evil spew. As the Mama rushed up to run back to our victim room (which we could see on our monitor and quickly dashed to open the locked door), everyone saw Jodi Arias flash her head back in annoyance that direction.

 

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The baby quickly settled down so we encouraged his Mom to go back in and we’d take it from there with him. By that time the 3 jurors had been led to seats in the jury box (which was great) so it was just Pam and I back there then. The baby naturally crawled to me so I was playing with him a lot using my flouncy skirt as a little tent for him. Later someone pointed out the sticky sweet rice cracker dangling from one of the ruffles of my skirt.

I picked up the baby at one point and as the Judge delivered that Life WITHOUT parole sentence to this monster, I stood there inches from that screen holding that precious innocent spark of life in my arms. I had written on Facebook that morning as I left “doors opening, doors closing”. I could almost hear that steel door slam shut behind Arias as I held close to my breast this beautiful symbol of “life goes on”.

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I became consumed with this entire body feeling of the Circle of Life as I also contemplated in that moment that I’m on the verge of becoming a stepmommy to a 3 year old. My life is most definitely going on and emerging in to new birth in so many directions. I’d been kind of stuck in a standstill for many years, alone, when I showed up that first day at the trial.

Now, my life has become a trampoline of love and growth and healing. I credit this all to that one decision–to take the risk and show up that one day.

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After it was over we all gathered in the victim room. There were hugs and tears as you can imagine. Of course I handed the baby back to his Mama and had to show her the stuck rice cracker dangling like a Christmas ornament on the tree limb of my skirt layer and we laughed. I thanked her for the beautiful opportunity to hold her baby in that moment.

The family chose to not deal with the media gathered in the front of the courthouse so were escorted out a back door. I walked out with the 3 jurors, right out the front. The media was swarmed around Jennifer Wilmott giving her ridiculous interview still claiming her lying sociopathic client was some kind of abuse victim. Blah blah blah.

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I turned to walk to my car and saw a familiar person standing all alone. I walked to her and put my arms around her and she was shaking all over. It was Detective Flores wife Corinna who I’ve had lots of contact with over all of this. In fact we were setting up a lunch date just days before. She’d lost her son very recently in a terrible accident so I was surprised she even had the strength to show up for this. She is very tiny and was consumed with emotion so I suggested we go sit down on a bench and talk. I was glad to have run in to her in that moment and connect.

Her mother and sister showed up carrying bouquets of blue and purple balloons (purple for her son Tony, blue of course for Travis). Her mother handed me a blue balloon which was so sweet.

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Corinna and I sat for quite a while and talked and just sat in silence. She moved over so close to me at one point it felt like she was going to sit in my lap, it was that kind of need for closeness. I felt like I wanted to pull her on to my lap and hold her. Once she was surrounded by more of her family, I walked with my balloon to say goodbye to some folks I saw in the distance–Chris and Sky, Beth Karas, etc. Kathy Brown, aka “Cane Lady” asked for a picture with me and the man Paul Sanders known as “The 13th Juror” who did a lot of great writing at the trial this time. It was great to meet him.

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I finished up there and decided it was time to go. As I turned the corner of the courthouse on to an empty street, alone with my blue balloon, the words sprung in my head “you walked in here alone and you’re walking out alone”. I felt such an overwhelming feeling of completion and confidence in this journey. It’s hard to describe feelings but this was like walking on air and firmly on the ground at the same time. A smile washed over my healing face. I did well I thought. I’m proud of myself.

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I reached my car and texted Katie Wick who I’d met that very first day I attended the trial. It was her first day too. We became fast friends. She’s now attending law school right near the courthouse so on a whim  thought she could meet for lunch as I had the time. She didn’t answer so I texted her, sat awhile and called my fiance who so sweetly had left me a message early saying “call me if you need to talk when this is over”. One of the benefits of being with a Psychologist. He’s so supportive.

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As we were chatting Katie texted back saying that she had a break between classes in 15 min. I turned the car around, parked and went to one of our usual lunch spots, ordered two salads, got a small can of Sofia champagne and rose lemonade to make a, I must say, delicious little mimosa.  By the time she got there after her class I had the lunch all ready for us.

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It was SO GREAT to see her. We had really bonded through some tough times and it just didn’t feel right leaving that last day without connecting with her. It just worked out perfectly.

Over our chopped salads we reflected on this journey–how we met, how she ended up nightly on the Dr. Drew Show (once with me), how we really immersed ourselves in the trial to the detriment of our lives, how we were affected by it all, how our friendship thrived and mostly how our lives have greatly changed for the better.  She in Law School, me getting married. Both of us meeting huge dreams we had given up on before that trial.

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It was a remarkable conversation and I’m so glad she could meet me.

I’d written a letter to all the Alexanders in my little packet I gave them with the grieving article. In it I included some of the causes I’d been championing behind the scenes–the main one being the issue of murder victims being able to be trashed and murdered again in the courtroom by their killer’s lies and stories made up for their defense. I feel very strongly about this issue and how us taxpayers ARE FUNDING THIS.  This trashing of the victim was NOT allowed when we went to trial in 1990–I remember the defense dipping their toe in direction and objections sustained.  The entire Arias defense was architectured around trashing Travis–all unfounded lies from the mind of a vicious butcher who killed him defenseless in his own shower, nude. This needs to end. This just simply needs to stop! It’s beyond the beyond.

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Lo and behold Katie shares with me she wrote Tanisha the night before also sharing how this trial –and their brother–influenced her for the good and get this. She is doing her Law School thesis on that very topic–victim trashing in the courtroom with Travis’s case being her case study.  Imagine that. She hopes to influence change through this and feels so strongly about it, she’s devoting her final paper to it.

Katie and I had not talked about championing this issue much less writing the family about it. I love that kind of serendipity and connection.

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I devote my life to following these breadcrumbs so when I see their fruition like that, it just warms my heart and convinces me I’m on the right path. There is no better feeling than that, let me tell you.

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I’m glad it’s over. I also know a new chapter of grief opens up for Travis’ loved ones. I was terrified when our trials finally ended. I had devoted my entire life to that fight for 2  years (much less than them) and all I had left was a gaping hole in front of me. It’s not an easy transition. When people say to them “aren’t you so relieved it’s over?” expecting pure happiness, it’s a challenge. Many will crash now. This awareness is very important for me to educate on. There will be days they will wish it was still going on to focus on. Staring at an abyss is not an easy halt.

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I’ve let them know I’m here and understand. All of our lives are going on now.

I will always think of Travis Alexander as a major influence in my life–his life will mean more than his death. Yet this trial pulled me deep in myself to find my way back to clear air again. That kind of healing opportunity is one you don’t get every day and I will be forever grateful.

Rest in Peace dear Travis. Hopefully you know my sister somewhere out there and you guys are having a ball. I know I am going forward living the life you both would be proud of.

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On a final afterthought, I woke up Monday morning to an email from the jewelry designer in the UK telling me our wedding rings were ready for sending off and when I got home that afternoon, my custom made wedding dress was waiting for me on my doorstep.

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Doors closing/doors opening, indeed.

More Arias Juror 17 Revelations

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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.

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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.

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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 )

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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.

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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?

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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“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”.

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(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.

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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?

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(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.

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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?

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(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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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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.

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Where Juror 17 Went Wrong

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I got to thinking about this Juror 17 possible misconduct/stealth/whatever issue and this is an analogy that I came up with.

First off, they had one clear and simple decision–do the aggravators in this trial outweigh the mitigators (or vice versa)? I know not really simple but they weren’t there to decide the merits of the death penalty, if Jodi Arias deserved to die, etc. They were to weigh those factors side by side and say which side outweighs the other. It the mitigator list did not outweigh the aggravator list, the sentence they were to render was Death. Plain and simple. This juror, from all I’ve put together, seems to have refused to do that task. She went on “feelings”, what Jodi Arias looked like, “revenge” and other unrelated issues from the task at hand.

She was also not to consider whether Travis Alexander was a bad person and deserved to die. That was on neither list although what the defense primarily based their case on throughout hoping to get an errant juror to sway from their duty. And they did (unless there was something else nefarious going on which I’m entirely suspicious of personally–time will tell).

It’s like they were handed two bushels–one was apples, the other oranges. They were to make one decision only–which of these baskets has the freshest fruit. That would require going through each of the pieces of apples and oranges and determining their degree of freshness. Let’s take it a step further and say the oranges were just picked, juicy, fragrant and full of their orangey goodness. The apple bushel contained many which were bruised, rotting and full of worms although a few fresh ones were sprinkled in.

The group decides to take all the fruit out and line it up and look at each piece and see, overall, which ‘weighs out” as the freshest overall. They count, they turn them around in their hand, they smell them, they take the time to be clear on their determination even though at the outset it might seem obvious.

Then there is Juror 17 who refuses to look at any of the pieces of fruit with them. She stands back by herself saying she likes apples. She thinks apples get a bad rap generally so she’s on the side of apples. And she thinks the oranges get it too easy so apples, in any condition, are better than oranges. The rest of the group asks her to come and look at all the apples, show them why she thinks they are “better” or “more fresh” , convince them that the apple bushel is the freshest. They even beg her to make her case to them so they can understand her affinity for those apples.

She refuses to participate in this and says they are “attacking her” over her deep love and preference for apples. She feels that they are the freshest so in her mind, they will the bushel she votes for no matter what. She won’t even look at the oranges much less pick one up and smell it. In fact, she kind of resents the oranges for wanting to ‘win” as she feels pity for the apples thinking someone should champion for them so that’s what she’s going to do no matter what. Besides her brother once fell out of an orange tree and broke his arm so she’s never cared much for oranges since he had to go to the hospital over that.

She hangs up the entire judging firmly refusing to look at the fruit but determining based on her predetermined preferences that this is the way she’s going to vote.

Then she goes home, reaches in to her own fruit bowl and takes a smiling bite of a ripe juicy apple, looks back at it and sees the back end of a wiggling worm right in the center, chomped in half by her own teeth. She doesn’t even spit it out, because she thinks that somehow, some way she can still make a case for that apple while she prepares her law$uit against the worm.

The End.

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Open Letter to the Jodi Arias Jurors–Second Panel

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To the 11 jurors (and the alternates) who followed the law and deliberated and saw this case for what it really is:  a first degree calculated homicide with deliberate intent to take an unarmed man’s life, cover it up, lie about every aspect about it for years then hijack the legal system by blaming him for his own slaughter,  I say thank you for seeing Jodi Arias as she truly is–a vicious “psychopath” as one of you called her.

First of all I want to make this very important point.  You all have PTSD right now.  Not just from the horror you had to endure in that courtroom and images you were forced to be exposed to again and again but from the trauma of having to deal with the heinous deliberations you did.  I have no doubt that every single one of you is suffering from PTSD and you would have even if the jury had been unanimous.  This isn’t your fault nor is it a sign of weakness.  It is a very natural result of having to sit in stunned silence for the months that you did while this Psychopath hijacked your lives while being traumatized like that.  It is very important that you understand the symptoms of this and, if needed, get treatment.  At the very least, keep talking to the people on the jury you bonded with as processing it verbally is one way to release the trauma from the nervous system.  I am an expert in PTSD both personally and professionally and any of you may contact me for more resources if you feel you need them.  Helping you is something I would feel a great sense of satisfaction participating in.

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Let me introduce myself a bit.  My sister Cindy, pictured on the left, was murdered here in AZ by two men who took her life for money.  She was 30 years old just like Travis.  She was murdered in an almost identical way as Travis–stabbed numerous times, nearly decapitated and her body left to be found by others.  She also lived in Mesa.  Her killers were, like Jodi, found guilty of first degree murder and sentenced to death. That was 24 years ago and they are both still alive and in the system.  The Death penalty is not for sissies when it comes to the aftermath and the burden/abuse it places on families.  I’ve said many times that the death penalty opponents who have championed for the men who left my sister’s slaughtered body in the desert on Christmas Eve 1988 have been the most abusive to me personally as well as my family members.  Unlike the Alexanders we had it pretty easy, comparatively, during Cindy’s killers’ original trials.

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There is a whole lot on the internet about our trials but I’m not going to ask you to read it because the last thing you need to be exposed to right now is more murder.  I only give that introduction so you know I have credibility with what I am saying to you.

Thank-You

You all made a valiant effort in that jury room and I, as a surviving sister of homicide, applaud each and every one of you.  The outcome had nothing to do with any of you not doing your job or trying hard enough.  It clearly had to do with an errant juror with an agenda and so much damage herself that it created a wall, a wall she now has to live behind for the rest of her life.  I would not want to walk in her shoes.

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I know you feel like you’ve let down the Alexanders.  That is a normal feeling.  Yet I believe that they know and have compassion for the impossible situation you were in. All of your brave words in the interview I’m sure have been  healing for them.  Keep speaking about it in any way that you can.  The validation you’ve given over the TRUTH of this case is, in itself, a healing balm.  The fact that you saw this horrific nightmare as it truly is, is a medicine only you can give and I’d say keep giving it.  It is healing for all of us who watched the trial in the ways of feeling like she truly didn’t “beat the system”.

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Now what I’m going to say may be somewhat controversial but it is my belief and I hope it helps you.  I’ve been ambivalent about this phase all along.  For only one reason:  I know what the aftermath of the Death Penalty is on families.  Yet I’ve been supportive of Jodi receiving it because she deserves it.  Under the law, which you followed, it represents the appropriate sentence for her crime:  the worst of the worst.  I attended nearly every day of the first phase of the trial so saw every day of her 19 day testimony in person and I will tell you she is the scariest killer I’ve ever witnessed, including both men who killed my sister.

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I have many reasons for that assessment but it’s not my aim today — my agenda is to help you heal and get perspective on this.  Jodi’s going to prison for life (she will never get out, don’t worry about that–it will not happen) will bring long term relief to the Alexanders.  Not in this moment understandably but in the long term they will truly much more easily be able to detach from her.

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17 years after my sister’s killers were sentenced to death, we went back to court for a lengthy hearing to determine if they were “mentally retarded” thus ineligible for the Death Penalty. How convenient that once the Supreme Court issued a ruling that we can’t execute the mentally retarded, these highly sophisticated manipulative sociopaths became “mentally retarded” overnight.

They conducted an extensive and sophisticated conspiracy to murder my sister for money and cover it up, yet were granted this relief in the system.  Without burdening you with the extensive trauma this inflicted on me and my family I will just let you know that one of them was released from Death Row as a result of that hearing.  The one who had served 5 years prior for a violent rape and the one who slit Cindy’s throat was granted reprieve and now lives, like Jodi, in AZ State Prison general population.

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The other killer, his brother, remains on death row.  I continue to receive notices on that one several times a year.  He continues to fight for appeals after appeals and we may be dragged back in to court again.  He will likely never be executed nor would Jodi.  He alone on death row has drained taxpayer dollars in the tens of millions simply in legal fees for people fighting to get him reprieve.  This stopped completely with his brother who is now a lifer like Jodi Arias.  Just some perspective.

I am not against execution, I just know how the system operates.  I am a very strong person but have had to navigate these waters since I was 29 years old.  I am now 55 and still navigating them.  To say it hasn’t had an impact on me would be lying.

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You can draw your own conclusions about what I am saying and it’s not political, it’s practical.  You will come to make peace with this outcome in your own ways and I am out here sending you love and support through the air waves.  If any of you ever would want to talk to me, I am open to doing so and know how to keep confidentiality (I used to be a Psychiatric Nurse so it’s in my DNA).

None of you, not one of you, did anything wrong.  Please know this.  Keep breathing deep…this will pass.

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Now on to Juror 17 I have some things to say.

There are many things floating around the internet right now about you but for now, the only ones that I want to address are comments your fellow jurors have made about you.

You managed to position yourself right next to Jodi Arias, at this moment, in solidarity.  Jodi Arias who is considered “the most hated woman in America”.

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This is an interesting choice for someone who, it appears, has suffered abuse herself.  You chose this position not for a “stand” you selected after a considered opinion but more for a stubborn refusal to consider the facts of this case.

This was one simple decision:  did the mitigating factors outweigh the aggravating factors in this murder?

Let me make it even more simple for you.

Did Jodi Arias’ age, mental status, claims of childhood “abuse” etc. outweigh 29 stab wounds, a near decapitation and a gunshot to the face.  Deliberate, planned, premeditated and covered up at length.

You chose to cling to your own personal belief system instead of looking at the cold hard facts and consider the one obvious “yes or no” in this simple equation.  You chose, for whatever personal history reasons you had/have to believe the character assassinations on the victim in this case Travis Alexander.

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Let’s be clear on this one fact.  The only, absolutely only reports of Travis Alexander being an abusive man to Jodi Arias in the ways she described, came from her. A known and admitted pathological liar with a serious agenda to save herself. I’m talking about the “rape” incident, the “pedophilia” incident, the “body slamming” incidents.

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I agree, he may have not had good boundaries with her and you might even call him a “player”. Ok, I’ll give you that. No one has life skills to deal with a sociopath, even if you already have had to, like me.

Does this equate abuse severe enough to nearly chop off his head deliberately, with a considered plan and execution?  Is this what you think an appropriate “punishment” is for stringing a woman along and, being generous, playing “mind games” with her (although I think the mind games were from Jodi to Travis personally).

Who were you really trying to protect here?  Yourself?  Your abusers?  Your wall of denial?

What you succeeded, yes you, single handedly succeeded at, was creating a triumph for abusers everywhere.  This trial and your participation in it specifically, sent a message that defense attorneys can malign a victim, a dead person (who could also be a woman or child by the way), straight from the unsubstantiated mouth of their perpetrator and find at least one person to buy that story thus excusing their crime.  That person was you.

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Now defenders of child molesters like Kirk Nurmi, because of you, will feel more confident in blaming those victims openly in court claiming their child victims asked for it, wanted it, deserved it.  You and your stubborn wall of whatever kicked that door wide open in this high profile trial.  Defense attorneys will be in search of a “you” on a jury feeling more empowered to use this “attack the victim” strategy to garner a win.  They might even study your personality like a bug to understand your unique weakness they can exploit, like happened in this trial.

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These are the things you have to live with now for the rest of your life. You name is linked forever with a vicious first degree murderer who planned to have sex with her victim, get him defenseless in a shower where he was as vulnerable as a person can be then attack him with a knife when he was truly trapped.  That could have been a woman in that shower.  Would your blindness have been the same?

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This is your life legacy now and it will never leave you.  That is the price you paid for indulging this pain based stubbornness you cling to.  Your future will be your reward for this very ill advised decision and you will be reminded of this every day of your life even if you wake up to reality one day.  This makes your life much like Jodi Arias’, imprisoned, although I suspect you have a conscience unlike the murderer which will make your suffering far greater than hers will ever be.  And, like Arias, there will be no pardon.  This is your life now.  I feel sorry for you.  I don’t think it’s what you intended but it’s what you created.

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Having written these words and released them, I won’t give you any more energy but I did have to say them.

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I am more interested now in placing my efforts on changes to disallow people like Kirk Nurmi, Jodi Arias, Jennifer Willmott, Maria De La Rosa and certain members of the media who supported them to further malign and abuse victims using the court system.  It’s beyond the levels of human decency and We the People fund it.  Can you imagine a court system which tries to blame a toddler for being raped?  This is one small step away from that world. And I for one, am ready to see it change before it escalates further.  This abuse of victims should pivot with this trial and I will keep speaking out about that as a taxpayer until someone hears me who matters.

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To those reading out there who are also suffering from PTSD who followed this case, exacerbated by this unfathomable non-verdict, because I know there are many of you/us, I say this:  please know this is real.  Please don’t deny your feelings or think you can just go back to normal.  This was a collective shock felt round the world and you are not alone.  There is help.  I know this first hand.

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This felt like Evil triumphed over Good but I believe that never really sticks.  That’s just my belief system and although this trial, like for many of you out there, rocked me to the core, I have a really great life.  A life filled with healing and love and joy and laughter and fun that is untainted by the tragedy that has befallen my family and continues to invade.  There is the largest part of me that has never been touched.

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Healing is always possible.

In closing I will share the words that sifted down in to my mind on the last day of our trials:  “they may have taken her life but they’re not getting mine.”  Please take them and use them for yourself.

If any of you out there need resources please contact me at katiecoolady@yahoo.com and I can hopefully direct you.

Thanks for taking the time to read.  May peace wash over the Alexanders and all of Travis’ loved ones today and in the coming days/weeks/months.

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injustice

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One errant juror hung the Jodi Arias trial in the second sentencing trial today.  Apparently she, like the foreperson in the first trial, refused to deliberate with her fellow jurors and came in to “deliberations” with a decided mind.

This sentencing phase was presented with one theme:  blame the victim.  Hoping that they get just one juror to believe that the victim, Travis Alexander, deserved to be slaughtered.  This holdout chose to believe the lies presented by the defense team for her own personal reasons, clearly based on her own history.  How she even ended up on that jury is a mystery to most of us watching.  How she was allowed to remain, although reported for refusing to deliberate by her fellow jurors is more unsettling.

I applaud the 11 who saw this case clearly and I will be writing an open letter to them tomorrow.  To the errant outlaw who wasted everyone’s time and our taxpayer money with her stubborn weakness, I have some words as well.

But I need to sleep on it.

Justice sometimes comes in forms we don’t expect.

Healing is always possible.

My thoughts and heart to Travis’ family and loved ones tonight after a very very long road.

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