Transcripts of Arias ‘secret testimony’ released
(CBS5AZ.COM) PHOENIX, Ariz. – There won’t be any testimony in the retrial of convicted murderer Jodi Arias on Tuesday, but court officials released a transcript of secret testimony given by Arias more than two months ago during her sentencing retrial.
The transcripts linked below were provided to KPHO’s lawyer, David Bodney, after they were purchased from the court recorder.
The paper used for printing these transcripts has a watermark on it that reveals “unauthorized” when scanned or copied. However, because KPHO is a client of Bodney, we are authorized to use the files.
CBS 5 read through the transcripts released Tuesday.
Arias wasted no time confessing to the crime.
Her attorney asked, “And did you kill Travis Alexander?
Arias said, “Yes.”
Arias went on to express remorse over murdering her former boyfriend Travis Alexander, back in 2008.
Arias said, “This is somebody that I cared about and I caused… I caused that pain, and those were his last moments and it makes me sick and I wish.. I wish so badly that I could just do that whole day over again.”
The convicted murderer also told jurors that she regretted lying to police, and leaving a misleading message on Alexander’s voice mail shortly after she killed him.
“By the time I made the phone call, I realized that I had done something very bad,” Arias told jurors. I couldn’t remember details, but I knew… I had a very heavy feeling, and I knew that I had done something bad. So that phone call was the beginning of when I started to try to cover my tracks.”
While on the witness stand, Arias also spent time talking about her life before she met Alexander.
Arias said that she was physically abused by her mother, father, and former boyfriends..
Arias went on to discuss how she met Alexander during a convention in Las Vegas, then had sex with him a week and a half later.
The testimony was cut short when Judge Sherry Stephens received an order from Arizona’s Court of Appeals, stating that the secret testimony must stop immediately.
Last week, the Arizona Supreme Court denied Arias’ request to delay her trial, which meant that the transcripts from her closed-door testimony in October were closer to being released.
But the transcripts, which the media has been fighting to be made public, couldn’t be released until the notes from the court reporters were turned over to the Clerk of the Court to be recorded and put into the proper form for release.
In a ruling that overturned Stephens’ decision that barred the press and public from watching Arias’ closed-door testimony, the
Arizona Court of Appeals ordered the transcripts released.
Stephens claimed at the time that the secret witness, who turned out to be Arias, was intimidated and wouldn’t testify unless the courtroom was closed.
A lawyer for media organizations last Thursday requested release of the transcripts from her testimony Oct. 30 and Nov. 3, from which the media and public were barred.
However, Stephens said she wouldn’t do that until the state Supreme Court ruled on defense lawyers’ motion to pause the retrial while they appeal the Court of Appeals’ ruling.
The transcripts finally were released late Tuesday morning.
The oft-interrupted proceedings in the Arias sentencing retrial resumed Thursday morning as the jury continued to determine whether Arias deserves life in prison or the death penalty.
Stephens sent jurors home three days before, saying the petition had been filed by the Arias defense with the state Supreme Court regarding the transcript of Arias’ testimony.
The Arias defense team continued to try and convince the jury that Arias was a victim and suffered from some type of mental illness in the hope jurors might give her life in prison and not the death penalty for killing her ex-lover Travis Alexander in June of 2008.
Legal experts believe the Arias defense team is trying to show that the convicted killer has a personality disorder that was brought on by a lifetime of physical and emotional abuse, which could be a mitigating factor in the jury’s decision to sentence Arias to death or life in prison.
The Arias trial has garnered national – even worldwide – attention. On May 8, 2013, a jury convicted her of murdering Alexander, and while they found her eligible for the death penalty, they could not unanimously agree to hand down the sentence.
Because of that, Stephens declared a mistrial in the penalty phase of the trial.
After months of legal wrangling, a new jury was eventually impaneled, and a retrial of the sentencing phase began Oct. 21. It is expected to last until the middle of the month.
In the meantime, rumors that Arias herself will once again take the stand continue to swirl.
The courtroom action will be described by CBS 5 News reporters each day on Twitter @CBS5AZ or on cbs5az.com.
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