It was a dramatic week inside the Phoenix, Arizona, courtroom where Jodi Arias stands trial for the June 2008 murder of her ex-boyfriend, Travis Alexander. Testifying in her own defense, Jodi Arias finally described what happened the night she claims she killed he ex-boyfriend in self-defense. After the defense finished their line of questioning, Prosecutor Juan Martinez began his cross-examination, immediately attempting to poke holes in Jodi Arias’ stories.
The road trip
On her seventh day of testimony, defendant Jodi Arias testified about her June 2008 road trip from her home in Yreka, California, to Travis Alexander’s home in Mesa, Arizona.
Prosecutor Juan Martinez alleged Arias set out on the road trip on June 2, 2008, intending to kill in premeditation.
Arias testified she first stopped in Monterey and Pasadena to visit friends. As she was planning to leave California and head to Utah to visit her new love interest Ryan Burns, Arias says her plans got sidetracked when Alexander guilted her into visiting him at his home in Mesa before going to Utah to see Burns.
Arias testified she and Alexander were still intimate over the phone in the weeks leading up to the trip. However, Arias said Alexander became hostile when she tried to begin new friendships with other men.
The jury saw a string of angry text messages Alexander sent Arias in late May of 2008, after Arias claims she encouraged him to seek treatment for his alleged pedophilia. However, their arguments were always followed by apologies, sexual messages, or phone calls, Arias testified.
After arriving at his home around 4 a.m. on June 4, 2008, Arias said she was greeted warmly by Alexander who was watching videos on his laptop in his office.
Exhausted from her six-hour drive, Arias said she and Alexander went to sleep around 5:00 a.m. She woke up around noon, followed by Alexander some time later.
“Did you get up and grab a gun and shoot him,” asked Defense Attorney Kirk Nurmi.
“No,” Arias replied.
“Did you grab a knife to stab him in bed,” Nurmi asked.
“No,” Arias said again.
She and Alexander had sex when they woke up, Arias testified. During the sex encounter, Arias said Alexander tied her up with rope that he had cut with a knife. Afterwards, Alexander then placed the knife in the bathroom or bedroom, according to Arias.
In an effort to satisfy him, Arias said she allowed Alexander to use his newly purchased camera to take pornographic photos of her naked body.
However, Arias testified their seemingly pleasant visit began to unravel when Alexander asked to view photos of their past trips together, which were saved on CD’s. After realizing the CD’s were either scratched or damaged, Arias testified Alexander became enraged.
“His tone changed, his demeanor changed, his body movements changed,” Arias told the jury.
She comforted him by rubbing his back, but Alexander was so angry that he twisted her arm behind her back, spun her around, leaned her over the desk, pulled her pants down and had sex with her, Arias testified.
“Did you wanted to have sex with him at that point in time,” Nurmi asked.
“Yeah, actually I did. It was better than him being mad,” Arias responded.
Afterwards, Arias testified she felt relieved that they had avoided “another fight.”
Arias said she intended to leave shortly thereafter, but decided to take pictures of Alexander in the shower in an effort to document his improved physique.
After eight days of recounting minutiae about her relationship with Alexander, Arias finally explained what happened the night Alexander was killed.
“I have no memory of stabbing him,” Arias told the jury.
“Do you remember dragging him across the floor,” asked Nurmi, while showing Arias a picture of what allegedly shows her standing over Alexander’s bleeding body.
“No, I just remember trying to get away from him,” she responded.
While taking naked photographs of Alexander in the shower, Arias testified he flew into a rage when she accidently dropped his new camera on the ground.
“He flipped out, stepped out of the shower and body slammed me onto the tile,” Arias said.
Fleeing the bathroom, Arias said she ran into Alexander’s closet and grabbed his gun which she said he left on the top shelf.
Arias testified she pointed the gun at Alexander to make him stop, but he came at her like a “linebacker.”
“The gun went off. I didn’t mean to shoot him,” Arias told the jury.
“He lunged at me and we fell really hard towards the wall,” Arias said.
In the midst of the alleged attack, Arias said Alexander was screaming at her and threatened to kill her.
Arias testified she might have blacked out because she could not recall images, but remembers the feeling of “mortal terror.”
“I had pissed him off worse that I had ever pissed him off. He was angry at me and wasn’t going to stop. He wasn’t stopping,” Arias said.
Arias testified her next clearest memory after the killing was driving in the desert where she disposed of the gun.
While Arias says she doesn't remember taking the gun out of the house, she does vaguely remember placing the knife in the dishwasher before leaving the house.
“I wish that it was just a nightmare I could wake up from and find out everything was still the same way,” Arias said when Nurmi asked how she felt after the killing.
Arias said she didn’t call 911 because she feared what would happen to her if she did.
In an attempt to conceal the killing, Arias said she went ahead with her plan to visit Ryan Burns and Leslie Udy in Utah.
Meanwhile, Arias testified she left Alexander a voicemail in an attempt to cover up her involvement.
As she returned home to Yreka, California, Arias told the jury she contemplated killing herself and even purchased a gun a few weeks later.
When she was informed of Alexander’s death, Arias testified she remembers being “in the living room doubled over…sobbing.”
“I wished it was a nightmare. I was scared. I thought I’d get arrested the next day,” she added.
Arias said she decided to attend Alexander’s memorial service because of a pact she and Alexander had made.
In an attempt to appear cooperative, Arias said she decided to call lead investigator Esteban Flores and offer assistance.
When she was finally arrested in California on July 15, 2008, Arias said she began to hoard Advil pills in preparation to commit suicide.
“I have a million regrets,” Arias told the jury.
“Maybe if I hadn’t grabbed the gun…I didn’t mean to fire it. He became a volcano,” she added.
Arias grilled on cross exam
On day one of his cross examination, Prosecutor Martinez immediately attempted to discredit Arias’ claims that Alexander was a pedophile who physically abused her.
Arias previously testified that on January 21, 2008, she walked in on Alexander pleasuring himself to images of young children.
The following day, Arias claims Alexander kicked her during an attack in which she broke her left ring finger.
While displaying entries from Arias’ journal, Martinez pointed out a four day gap between an entry Arias made on January 20, 2008, and an entry she wrote on January 24, 2008.
“I haven’t written because there is nothing noteworthy to report,” Arias wrote in the January 24 entry. Martinez pointed out Arias made no reference to Alexander’s alleged pedophilia and her broken finger, both incidents which supposedly occurred during the four day hiatus.
Martinez then displayed a photograph of Arias taken with her sister in May of 2008, in which her left ring finger is clearly visible.
In the photograph, Martinez pointed out that Arias’ finger did not appear to be as bent as it did when Arias displayed it for the jury during her testimony.
While ridiculing Arias about her inability to recall specific details about the alleged pedophilia incident, Martinez asked Arias, “What factors influence your memory problems?”
“Men like you screaming at me, grilling me, it makes my brain scrambled,” Arias replied.
In another attempt to poke holes in Arias’ story, Martinez accused Arias of scheming to manipulate a witness into lying for her at an August 8, 2011 evidentiary hearing, in which the judge was expected to rule on evidence related to the alleged pedophilia incident.
After Arias denied his claim, Martinez entered two magazines into evidence. Arias admitted she intended to give a friend the magazines while she was in jail.
One of the magazines contained a message that read:
You f***ed up what you told my attorney the next day
Directly contradicts what I’ve been saying for over a year
Get down here ASAP before you talk to them again and before
You testify so
We can fix this
Interview was excellent must talk ASAP
Jodi Arias will be back on the witness stand Monday. Live coverage of her testimony begins at 12:30 p.m. ET on HLN.