Proof of premeditation requires proof of reflection on decision to kill and discussion of the Arias allocution

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Good afternoon:

To prove premeditation, a prosecutor must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant intended to kill the victim and, upon reflecting on the decision to kill, decided to go ahead and kill the victim. This process can occur quickly and only requires more than a moment in time to take place. Therefore, time is not particularly important to proving premeditation.

A prosecutor must rely on circumstantial evidence to prove premeditation, unless the defendant has admitted that he or she premeditated the murder. The most powerful circumstantial evidence of the defendant’s intent is the defendant’s conduct. The greater the length of time between formation of intent to kill and the act that causes death, the more likely the defendant reflected on the decision to kill and decided to complete the act.

Many of us, including me, have speculated that GZ premeditated the death of Trayvon Martin. However, a prosecutor must restrict himself to charging what he believes he can prove beyond a reasonable doubt. This is why GZ is charged with second degree murder. It is a conservative charging decision based on the uncertainty of convincing all of the jurors beyond a reasonable doubt that GZ reflected on a decision to kill Trayvon Martin and decided to go ahead and do it.

Now consider the Jodi Arias case. Seems to me that there is overwhelming evidence of careful planning before the murder, and the use of two weapons (knife and gun) to carry it out, including a coup de grâce, eliminates any doubt in my mind that she had opportunities to reflect on her decision to kill and decided to complete the act.

Jodi Arias just finished addressing the jury (her right to allocution) and the Court is now instructing the jury.

What did you all think about her allocution and what do you think the sentence will be?

Keep in mind during the jury deliberation that any mental illness qualifies as a potential mitigating factor. Insanity is a legal definition that requires proof that, due to a mental illness, a defendant could not distinguish between right and wrong at the time of the act. Any effort to conceal the commission of the crime and/or the person’s role in committing the crime normally defeats the insanity defense. Arias is not claiming insanity.

Closing arguments will begin at 1:30 pm PDT.


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224 Responses to Proof of premeditation requires proof of reflection on decision to kill and discussion of the Arias allocution

  1. Dan Q. Smith says:

    DP. Her holding up a “survivor” t shirt in front of this jury a vile action and a bridge too far. She might as well have stood up, screamed “Fuck you!” and sat down. From the the beginning of this process to the end she is an obscene piece of work. I don’t believe in the death penalty but what I biebe and what Arizona law says are two different things. At least on death row we will no longer have to put up with the cold blooded narcissism of this evil demented psychokiller. I tried to have an ounce of compassion for her but she’s just too much.

    • Two sides to a story says:

      “You will not be punished for your anger – you will be punished by your anger.” ~ Buddha

      Holds as true for those who speak angrily and cast those stones as it does for those you cast stones at.

      • Dan Q. Smith says:

        Well, It’s hard to see how this applies to Travis Alexander since after about two minutes of living an absolute nightmare he was dead. It’s easy enough for us to be philosophical but we nor any of our loved ones were killed like something out of the movie Psycho (1960) complete with photographs to match the film stills for the whole world to see in graphic, ghoulish detail. I feel it’s a little bit presumptuous of us to think we know as well as or better than Travis and his family should feel. I’m the original “bleeding heart” liberal and I don’t believe in the death penalty, but I believe in justice and I sure as hell don’t believe in giving the likes of Jodi Arias and George Zimmerman the opportunity to kill again. Am I angry that these innocents were murdered in terrifying cold blooded ways? You bet ya. And if that makes me a bad person in one’s eyes, so be it.

        • I believe the quote of Budda’s that TS is referring to is that jodies anger is what has punished her…Had her anger not have been so great towards Travis….this never would have happened….and pushed her to the edge..

          Example……20 some odd years ago I had my place burglarized…..I knew who did it….enough proof…yet the sheriffs wouldn’t bother with it ’cause he’s a rich white boy (I’m white myself)……..For a year and a half my anger was not quelled…..daily I tried to come up with a plan to extact my revenge on this person………That anger was my punishment for the things I was thinking…….instead of just letting Karma take it’s course……

          I let it go……..and sure enough…over the years his life went to shit.

          Yet it was on me that I let that anger fester in me..

          PLEASE TS….correct me if I’m wrong

      • two sides to a story says:

        Buddhist philosophy suggests that anger is the most afflictive of the five major afflictive emotions (there are many others but most seem to be offshoots of the five). It suggests that almost without exception, that minor irritability that we think normal leads to anger and anger leads to hatred and hatred leads to murder and also suggests that humans get caught on the wheel of samsara for eons of time in endless rebirths until conquering anger.

        Yeah, you’re so right, MMP. Thanks for sharing your experience We all have incidents in our lives that bring out our anger toward others and sometimes even ourselves but it’s a self-punishing emotion and perhaps doubly self-punishing if we hold anger toward ourselves. I have an afflicted Mars in my birth chart and so it’s been an ongoing and interesting struggle for me to note irritability and anger and then to let it to go. It’s even harder to stand back and not feel angry toward myself and I’m pretty hard on myself and sometimes self-punishing. I could tell you about lots of similar incidents in my life that brought up anger. I’ve also held anger toward my parents for things they did and did not do during my childhood and have had to constantly confront the futility of it and try to develop the peace of forgiveness.

        Jodi took her anger to an extreme and she destroyed her life even as she destroyed Travis. Even if the criminal justice system fails to catch up with offenders (according to Buddhist thought, there are karmic reasons for this – they may have good karma and good merit not exhausted by their criminal action). There’s no escaping karmic retribution, so it’s said, but it’s based on individual merit and other people’s judgments have no effect on the process.

        I have to continually remind myself to not exude anger toward Fogen. He’s already suffering the consequences of his anger and my anger about his actions only poisons me.

        I guess anger in a sense can fuel some energy to take positive steps, to fight injustice and so on, but it seems to be a mostly unproductive and poisonous state.

      • two sides to a story says:

        Dan Q – I think as you enter the last decade or two of your life you begin to feel a bit more presumptuous and bold about offering a viewpoint because of long experience. You don’t want to see other people suffer as you have or that you have observed and so offer the nuggets of wisdom that bonked you in the head.

        It probably seems extremely arrogant on my part, but I don’t offer anything that I haven’t struggled terribly with myself. It isn’t that I’m trying to judge anyone else. There’s very good reason that the world’s greatest spiritual teachers say things like “turn the other cheek” and other advice that relates to anger and vengeance and moral judgment.

        Buddhism is also big on exploring all the dynamics of conceptual or binary thought and how we continually label experiences and everything around us as good, bad, etc and how that leads us astray. Very interesting stuff. It’s the study of a lifetime.

        Another of my favorite aphorisms from Buddhist thought is that mean people or people who harm others are suffering and deserve our compassion. I have to continually remind myself of this, not so much for Jodi because I can see her confusion, delusion and pain, and romantic relationships sometimes have a very deeply dysfunctional chemistry that leads to obsessive attachment and her dysfuction to me seems not so much evil but deluded; but for Fogen because his action of killing a minor when he could have easily made the common sense decision to identify himself to and offer a ride to Trayvon is so deeply infuriating. Such a simple thing to do. Of course there is some karmic link between the two there too, things no human can determine. Sad, sad stuff for all involved in both these cases. Big lessons for all of us too.

        Sorry for all these long messages. I’ve been in a more serious mood lately.

      • groans says:

        @Two sides – Enough of your Buddhist preaching! You invoke Buddha as a sling to “cast stones” at others who you deem less enlightened than yourself. Smells like hypocrisy, from where I meditate.

        It probably seems extremely arrogant on my part…

        Yup. Sure does.
        It also appears that you could learn a lot from MMPat about Buddhist teachings and how to apply them.

  2. Trained Observer says:

    “Travis would not have wanted that.” — SearchingMind

    Am not sure what Travis would have wanted … before, during or after his throat was slit ear to ear..

  3. SearchingMind says:

    Our Judeo-Christian Values

    Without diminishing the gravity of the barbarity of Jodi’s action, I still, upon reflection, maintain that Jodi’s jury was compromised (by inadmissible expert witness determination of her guilt offered as evidence in court) and biased (in that jurors had already formed- and made known their opinion that Jodi was guilty before they deliberated and came to the conclusion that she was indeed guilty) while her attorneys were not extremely effective. Jodi would have been found guilty if due process was followed. But finding her guilty outside that process offends the Constitution. I refuse to be party to that circus.

    Jodi will be sentenced to death. She will be executed at the appropriate time. And the systemic failure in this case shall have then been completed. WE, The People will electrocute Jodi or poison her to death. Or, maybe we are not going to poison her after all, because, ya know, we are a brave and decent people, the light onto the nations and the salt of the earth. We, The People will be fine with life imprisonment – i.e. pure retributive justice for the sake of nothing other than retribution and revenge consisting of eternal infliction of pain and agony until death in a “total institution”. It’s not about Jodi. Heck, it’s not even about our Judeo-Christian values and concept of Justice. IT is about us. “us” must feel good about “usselves”. No kidding.

    And still, Jodi doesn’t get it. And she may not ever get it. In her allocution, Jodi showed that she has improved immensely: now Jodi believes she is also Jesus. She wants to donate her hair. Anyone who touches that hair will be cured of his/her illness. Surely, jurors will not deny millions of suffering kids Jodi’s miracle working hair. Jodi’s self-made T-shirts will change the course of history and the fate of women caught up in domestic violence for good. Just touch Jodi’s T-shirts and all will be well again (Just like the woman Christians believe touched Jesus’ garments and her hemorrhage was instantly cured). Surely the jury will see that and spare her life. Jodi knows that for sure. Et cetera, et cetera. Even after death, Jodi wont still get it. She is as insane as it can get. But die she must.

    Not in my name. I see no reason why this victim of domestic violence should not have the chance to at some point rejoin the society and live out whatever is left of her life. There is nothing gained in keeping 70+ yrs old women in jail after they have serve about 30+ years. It’s just as barbaric as what Jodi did. Travis would not have wanted that.

    • Mary Davis says:

      @ Seaching. I don’t know what Travis would have wanted, but killing Jody will not bring Travis back. BTW I think her attorney did an outstanding job pleading for her life. For Jody not to beg for forgiveness from Travis’ family shows how disturbed she really is. JMHO.

      • Two sides to a story says:

        Her behavior is right on target for some with narcissistic personality disorder (which doesn’t mean that all people with NPD are killers).

        She won’t be killed in my name either. I refuse to cast that stone upon anyone.

      • cielo62 says:

        Mary Davis/ the death penalty was never about “bringing someone back”. The DP has one purpose, and one purpose only- to permanently remove someone who has shown very clearly and violently, that they refuse to live peacefully with others. That is why I support it.

        Sent from my iPod

    • Dan Q. Smith says:

      She is not a victim of domestic vilencece. There is zero evidence of that- abosolutely zero. She is a pathological liar who didn’t even come up with this allegation until two years after she was arrested.

      Keeping someone in jail for life is not on the same level of barbarism as knifying someone almost 30 times, slashing their throat ear to ear, and shooting them in the face. Please.

      She did get due process including a defense that cost Arizona taxpayers almost $2 million.

      I don’t personally believe in the death penalty but enough of this. People who do what she has done have lost their right to be in the position to victimize others ever again.

    • cielo62 says:

      Searching Mind- seriously. Have you lost your mind? What’s all this pity for a murderer? She CHOSE TO KILL. How hard is that to understand? She has forfeited her rights to live among law abiding members of society. She has free will, maybe hampered a bit from a personality disorder but that is NO excuse or guarantee of criminality. LWOP or DP, makes no difference to its purpose: to safeguard society from people unwilling to abide with the most minimal of rules to not murder other members. I have no problem with that. If you feel so strongly then by all means arrange for medical care for her in prison. Call, write, be an activist on her behalf. But by all means, she will be AWAY from the rest if us. For all her days.

      Sent from my iPod

    • groans says:

      @SearchingMind – What a disappointment this comment is. You’ve been on such a roll lately with really informative comments … and now this.

      For an adamant atheist who went apesh!t not long ago over “bringing religion” into this blog, here you are doing it yourself! As if it’s OK to do so if the purpose is to bash and ridicule it.

      How cowardly of you to hide behind “Our Judeo-Christian Values” (which you’ve made clear you reject) to “wash your hands” of any responsibility for our society. And how shallow and silly of you to suppose that any such homogenous thing exists here! Do you seriously believe that there is any consensus of “values” in our society – among Jews, among Christians, among any other religions, or even among atheists?

      If you’ve got an opinion to share, just share it. Do what you, yourself, demanded so emotionally and vehemently: Leave religion out of it.

      Other than that, I appreciate some of the points you raised!

    • Jun says:

      I dont get the point of the photos as evidence

      It does not excuse the act of killing another human being utilizing tyranny and depravity

      I am sure even Charles Manson had nice photos of himself

    • Malisha says:

      Yup. Don’t graduate but make it look like you did. Don’t qualify for a law enforcement job but make it look you do. Don’t “mentor” any kids but make it appear that you devote your life to such endeavors. Don’t “advocate” for Sherman Ware but make it appear that you leafletted and tirelessly worked for justice on his behalf. Murder someone and make it “look like self-defense.” Yup. Hard to break those bad habits.

      My advice: Start stoppin’ that habit you have of “boss everybody around and lord it over them and tattle on them because you’re better than they are” before you get to prison, if you know what ain’t good for you.

    • Rachael says:

      You have GOT to be kidding me! What is WRONG with his “legal team?” Do they actually WANT him convicted??!!!

    • groans says:

      Unbelievable! Words fail. (Pun intended.)

      Emblematic, for sure! Emblematic evidence of the total fraud that IS this killer. Great title and presentation, LLMPapa!

  4. gbrbsb says:

    A cursory glance at discovery reveals a lot of repeat bumpf, but there are some important pieces, i.e. some photos of Trayvon’s and GZ’s clothing (among the “80 photographs of evidence taken by the Defence at FDLE on August 8, 2012”) albeit another 11 photos of Trayvon’s clothing have been redacted.

    Of the clothing photos that are present it appears Trayvon’s slacks have stains around the knees while the the knees of GZ’s jeans don’t appear to be stained at all albeit then neither does the but area show any apparent staining either.

    Any ideas, on how this might affect theories concerning the struggle?

    • Two sides to a story says:

      I didn’t look at the zip file of 80 photos because I didn’t want to hang my computer up while working on something else. But I would think that since witnesses reported one or both on the ground, and Trayvon perhaps mounted on Fogen at one point, and vice versa, it simply corroborates that. But might also show Trayvon sinking to his knees after being shot if theories that Fogen stood and extended his arm to shoot is correct. Fogen should have a wet, grassy behind and his boots should have been wet and grassy at the heels as well in his shimmy beatdown story. But I’m not as good with these details as many other posters, so I’ll shut up and go to sleep!

      I felt sad seeing Fogen’s happy graduation pics and reflecting how he wrecked his happiness with his impulsive and angry behavior – the graduation that wasn’t.

    • Jun says:

      is it back of the knees or front of the knees for the slacks?

      • gbrbsb says:

        Front knees. I reckon that as his slacks where beige they were more prone to marking anyway than jeans which by their nature are hard wearing, semi indestructable, etc.

      • Jun says:

        Jeans get grass stains and mud stains too

      • Jun says:

        It seems then Trayvon may have been on his knees at some point where he was dragged a bit, for their to be grass and mud smearing, which a lot of possibilities

    • Malisha says:

      Unless they can prove that the stains on Trayvon’s khakis’ knees were fresh wet grass that had stained those khakis BEFORE Trayvon was shot in the heart and thrown face-down on the ground while a 205-pound man sat on his back, I would think it was utterly irrelevant. And if it turned out that they could prove all that, they’d THEN have to prove that the stains were not made when he (a) fell after being shoved while DeeDee heard, “What you doin’ around here?” or (b) said, “I’m begging you…”

      • gbrbsb says:

        Sounds good Malisha, but is it about the defence “proving” or creating a “reasonable doubt”?

        On the other hand I agree GZ on top may well be irrelevant, and I for one have never thought it a good argument for the prosecution anyway because, a) it is impossible to “prove”, b) several witnesses testify to seeing Trayvon on top, c) they probably interchanged places during the scuffle.

      • Jun says:

        Since it is an affirmative defense, they have to be able to be granted self defense instruction, and then the jury decides, which means, they would have to present more than just “reasonable doubt”, which brings up a few points

        1) Witness 6 changed his story a few times but settled on pinning or maybe hitting, he is not sure, nor is he sure who was screaming, but he believes he saw the black kid on top, however, their legs were straight out on both of them, which means, witness 6 never claimed the MMA mount position like Fogen claims and both their legs straight out like the picture he drew, contradicts Fogen’s claims

        2) There is debris, grass, mud, or any stains on the back of Fogen’s clothes or shoes

        3) witness 18 saw the whole thing from the confrontation forward and her testimony is that Fogen was on top of Trayvon, shot the kid, then rose to his feet. She testifies that it was the sound of a boy screaming.

        If you put this together with the rest we have seen and what the state cant release till trial, it shows that the defendant saw the kid, targeted the kid, tried to frame the kid as a burglar, terrorized the kid, killed the kid as the kid pleaded for his life, then tried to frame the kid for assault with his lies and also hide his murder to try to avoid going to prison as no person in the state of Florida wants an unbalanced individual going around stalking and killing people and be allowed to walk around besides the fact it is against the constitution

      • SearchingMind says:

        @ gbrbsb

        “On the other hand I agree GZ on top may well be irrelevant, and I for one have never thought it a good argument for the prosecution anyway because, a) it is impossible to “prove”, b) several witnesses testify to seeing Trayvon on top, c) they probably interchanged places during the scuffle”.

        Is it possible that the “irrelevant” Malisha has in mind is NOT the one you are talking about? If I understood Malisha well, she is clearly referring to the irrelevance of ” the stains on Trayvon’s khakis’ knees were fresh wet grass that had stained those khakis [AFTER] Trayvon was shot in the heart and thrown face-down on the ground while a 205-pound man sat on his back”. Who was on top of whom before the kill shot is very relevant and Malisha is not saying the opposite.

        The bullet trajectory (and btw GZ’s own words and demonstration, and witness statements) show that the “Trayvon on top” version cannot be true. That leaves two alternatives open: (a) both Trayvon and GZ were standing facing each other or (b) GZ was on top of Trayvon. The prosecution does not have to prove either one of these alternatives. It just has to exclude the version of GZ on the ground with Trayvon mounted on top of him MMA style.

        I am not sure that “several witnesses” testified to seeing Trayvon on top. Would you like to provide/link your source? I might not be well informed.

        • Xena says:

          @SearchingMind. There was wrestling. At any point, either person could have been on top. Witnesses reported wrestling and during his interview for the voice stress test, GZ said that his jacket raised during the “wrestling.”

          The stains on Trayvon’s pants don’t bother me because GZ admitted to sitting his fat ass on Trayvon’s back. What I do question is if GZ was on his back doing the shimmy and being pinned down, where are the stains on the butt of his pants?

    • Donna Flores says:

      If Trayvon had grass stains on his knees then Zimmerman should definitely have some stains since he claims he was the one on the ground most of the time. To shimmey you have to use your buttocks, there should be mud and plenty of grass stains. Though I don’t see how you can shimmey downward.
      Doesn’t help the defense at all.

    • amsterdam1234 says:

      I was having a discussion with Aussie a while ago about the struggle. We both thought the screams and the lack of struggling sounds, were more consistent with GZ having control over Trayvon by holding him in an arm lock. An arm lock would most likely mean that the person in control would be behind the other person, with the person held in an arm lock on his knees or on his side. You can read the exchange here.

      • Cercando Luce says:

        But then, no GZ DNA on the sleeves… did GZ wear gloves?

      • Cercando Luce says:

        I agreed with PiranhaMom that defendant pinned Trayvon’s arms with defendant’s knees, astride his victim.

        Fiber analysis, please!

      • gbrbsb says:

        IMBW but I am pretty sure it was precisely myself and Aussie, who first suggested last summer over at the lounge that the screams more resembled those emanating from the excruciating pain caused by a wrist, arm or shoulder lock, i.e. restraining technique, than from fear. I had located a video of the police restraining a suspect and the screams were so similar it was eerie.

        What you note about Trayvon being on his knees has a lot of logic in respect of the stained knees and also fits with the “I´m begging you”. Certainly IMO the explanation is much more plausible than the stains being caused by GZ after the shot, straddling Trayvon or turning him over etc. which doesn’t convince me at all. And GZ would not have had to have been behind Trayvon to use such a hold as from the many videos I viewed last summer on the subject demonstrating restraining techniques many, if not most, applied the techniques from the front as they were mainly showing how to gain the advantage in a fight.

        I wonder if the 11 redacted photos of his clothing will tell us more. (I understand why they redacted autopsy photos but what reason to redact clothing ones?)

      • amsterdam1234 says:

        I am sure I wasn’t first one to come up with that idea. This was about why Trayvon could’ve gotten soiled knees. I actually liked Aussie’s idea better, but his idea also required Trayvon to get up on his knees. I don’t think an arm lock face to face would’ve been very likely. I am trained in judo, getting an arm lock right requires exact pressure and counter pressure at 2 points of the arm. I am sure there is a technique where you can apply that kind of pressure face to face, I just don’t see that happening in those kind of circumstances. But that is only my opinion.

  5. Jun says:

    Just My Opinion, but it sounds like Fogen terrorized a kid, and as the kid begged for his life, Fogen decided to kill the kid and stage a self defense claim to try and get away with murder

  6. gbrbsb says:

    Just found this nice little motion they also filed yesterday basically complaining about the fee requested for his deposition by the audio expert Tom Owen, MOTION TO ESTABLISH REASONABLE EXPERT FEE

    • Jun says:

      Tom Owen’s fee sounds about right considering the defense has made witnesses sit for close to 8 to 10 hours and the defense can’t be trusted with a bill, so it is better to get money upfront from them

    • Two sides to a story says:

      That’s really odd. “Nyah-nyah I’ll make you reduce your fee by telling the judge you charge too much.”

      Am I missing something here? Is this a common procedure? Sounds like the paying supporters are falling down on the job.

      • Since the defendant is not indigent and the Court is not paying his legal expenses, I do not believe the Court has jurisdiction to grant the relief that Don West is requesting.

      • two sides to a story says:

        Yes, it only makes sense if Fogen is declared indigent and the state is picking up expenses. Otherwise, how can the court have any influence upon the normal fees that an expert charges to appear for a deposition?

    • SearchingMind says:

      Florida Statutes 92.231(3):

      “In a criminal case in which the state or an indigent defendant requires the services of an expert witness whose opinion is relevant to the issues of the case, the expert witness shall be compensated in accordance with standards adopted by the Legislature.”

      GZ is not indigent nor did the Motion cite any other authority to support the request.

      • two sides to a story says:

        Thx for the statute. Makes total sense that the only influence upon expert fees goes along with official indigency. It does make me wonder how many experts would decline to work for less though, or how many are motivated to serve anyway regardless of personal expense.

  7. gbrbsb says:

    Everyone, the long awaited Defendent’s 2nd Supplemental discovery now available @GZlegalcase

  8. Mary Davis says:

    I don’t understand why no one in her family spoke on her behalf, especially her dad. I think she was the oldest girl. Was she not a daddy’s girl?. Is this a dysfunctional family?. A girl and her dad have a special bond. No matter what she does, or how old she gets, she will always be daddy’s baby girl. Her dad probably would have touched the heart of at least one of the men on the jury, resulting in a hung jury. How truly sad this is for both families.

  9. Malisha says:

    I actually think her attorneys fall into the “fail” category.
    Imagine letting her get up and seal her fate like that! DAMN!
    It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to realize that advertising your T-shirts for “victims” doesn’t fly in the penalty phase. They may vote to kill her just so she doesn’t damn SELL THOSE T-SHIRTS!

  10. Under too much information category:

    Our African Grey parrot, Nikko, swears just like a goat herder. And it’s Fred’s fault. There, I said it.

    • We ain’t got no stinkin’ goats round here.

    • Xena says:


      Our African Grey parrot, Nikko, swears just like a goat herder.

      Forgive Nikko for the swearing, as long as it continues to respond to when the professor says he needs a hair-cut. 🙂

      • LOL! (It’s fun to poke fun at Fred sometimes. I thought I was going to die laughing when my son revealed to me recently that, during high school he and his friends got into contests to see who could get Fred to talk the longest, by coming up with deep, meandering philosophical questions: What do you think Moses would have thought of this? And they’d get him to talking for hours.)

        • Xena says:


          And they’d get him to talking for hours.)

          That’s a trait of a gifted teacher. There is a retired law professor of Northwestern University School of Law who I talked to from time to time. One question, and I got a free, hour-long lecture. 🙂

  11. Another sleazy move by the prosecutor was to tell the jury that Arias could be paroled in 25 years and that is not true.

    Life without parole means life without parole.

    To protect the record, the defense attorney also should move for a mistrial of the penalty phase based on that improper argument

    She may have done this during the sidebar conferences (for this objection and for the insinuation that JA had a prior criminal conviction), which are recorded for the record, but inaudible to the jury and the rest of us.

  12. Is “no unanimous agreement,” ie, a hung jury, a life sentence in Arizona?

    Also, was I hallucinating, or did the prosecutor actually give the jury the false impression that she could be paroled in 25 years? If so, this is truly sleazy. No way she’ll be paroled ever, with this crime.

    • Inability to reach a unanimous verdict will result in LWOP.

      • OMG youd a thunk it so this bitch would finally go away! But NO!!!
        IF the jury can’t come to a unanimous decision, they have to get a WHOLE NEW jury JUST for this sentencing part!!! they will have like another MINI trial to show the new jury how she got convicted!! If they hang this thing will NEVER end!!

    • Jun says:

      could be is a possibility

      technically he was not lying

      it may sound sleazy to yall but there is a possiblity to appeal for a parole I think but do not take my word for it, in Arizona Law

      If I am incorrect, I will retract my statement

  13. Defense attorney did a good job handling the prosecutor’s insinuation that JD had a criminal record.

    Good rebuttal.

    She still needs to move for a mistrial of the penalty phase to protect the record.

  14. MelRoy says:

    Another question for the Professor – does this open the door for prosecution questions about GZ’s prescription drug use, and whether the cocktail of drugs he was taking at the time of the shooting influenced his behavior, actions and reactions?

    • Rachael says:

      Good god, I hope so. He says in that motion something about Trayvon swaying at the counter as if under the influence of something, how about his own client slurring his words as if HE’S on something. It makes me angry to NO end that someone can shoot someone and the victim gets drug tested but not the shooter – when the shooter is (admittedly later) known to take far worse drugs than that of which the victim is accused.

  15. MelRoy says:

    Professor – thank you as ever for your terrific insight. Regarding the marijuana use, although I think that is entirely irrelevant (since marijuana does not make one aggressive – in fact it has the opposite effect), didn’t the coroner’s toxicologist state at the beginning that the trace amounts found in TM’s bloodstream were likely to be at least week-old residual? Again, the defense seems to want to smear the victim. Now I’m not saying that is not a good or uncommon defense tactic (you take what you can get) but are there any toxicologists or addiction specialists on the State’s witness list?

    • Seems to me that if anything, this marijuana thing could backfire on them. Even if they could prove, which they cannot, that TM was intoxicated on Cannibis, that substance is shown, in the published, peer-reviewed literature, to reduce the likelihood of violent behavior, and trust and believe, the state will have experts to testify to this, if that’s what it comes to.

      • That’s the sort of sideshow minitrial that Rule 403 is specifically designed to prevent. When the probative value of the outcome is slight, if any, and the potential for the sideshow minitrial to distract and confuse jurors regarding the ultimate issues in the case is high, Rule 403 says don’t go there.

  16. The prosecutor is giving a very sleazy rebuttal arguing that Arias has prior convictions. She doesn’t and that may be grounds for a mistrial in the penalty phase.

  17. gbrbsb says:

    JM just posted Defence filed motion for Nelson to bar State’s motion to bar toxicology reports and testimony. Apparently MOM & Co are trying to link GZ’s, “he’s on drugs or something”, with Trayvon’s MJ use for which there is apparently evidence Trayvon took MJ up to Brandy’s to smoke while there, and the State’s toxicologist testified that the low amount of THC in Trayvon’s blood could be due to his being a chronic user.
    Link to motion here on GZlegal here

    • Hold up. O’Mara wants to argue the ridiculous, fucked up, below toxicological interest miniscule amount of weed in TM’s system, as some sort of a contributing factor to some kind of reason that…

      gotta be kidding. And another thing. GZ oughta get down on his two knees and thank God there isn’t a tox screen from HIM that night, and I think that’s the most likely reason he avoided the hospital like the plague. Because he was higher than a kite, right? Well, that, and of course he didn’t have the injuries for a hospital…I’m guessing ole George was higher than God that night, and I don’;t think I’m alone. He did have a drinking history as well, did he not?

      • Bill Taylor says:

        some have argued that the autopsy report states there is brain damage to Martin because of long term drug abuse?????? i read the autopsy long ago and saw nothing remotely akin to that?????

      • Rachael says:

        There has been hints at a drinking history, but I don’t know if it is confirmed (with regard to GZ). And of course the refuse at the outhouse insists that this is not the full tox report. The defense is just trying to try this in public and trying to make Trayvon look as bad as they can because they have nothing else. And even if they have this, they still have nothing.

      • Straight from PubMed:

        “Cannabis reduces likelihood of violence during intoxication,”

      • Two sides to a story says:

        Yawn. More drama for the paying supporters and another attempt at tainting a jury.

      • Bill Taylor says:

        TY for the responses, i read it long ago and recalled only the mention of the swelling and its cause is obvious as Frederick posted..and again i am very guilty of using common sense, knowing it is very RARE for a just turned 17 year old person to have brain damage from “LONG TERM” drug use…….the ziodiots simply make stuff up out of thin air, showing a level of dishonesty that makes me ponder how many of them live near me?

      • LeaNder says:

        Crane, I was pretty startled when I discovered in our context, that there are indeed some “scientists” that look into or argue about a connection between weed and violence.

        So we finally know what type of expertise they may have spent a little of the $ 19,000 for experts on. That’s of course pure Treehouse stuff. I wonder how Jeralyn will combine her legalization position with this type of defense for her hero. 😉

        Well yes, the war on drugs must go on, jobs and money ….

        Oh, yes and then there is the demand that the court orders a reasonable fee for the deposition of Tom Owen. At the highest he can get O’Mara’s $400 starting with probably more reasonable 250.

        • Well words almost fail. That article, even on a good day says that more research is needed. Well, to use the words in the article, it calls for: “future research,” “further research,” and “more research.” That’s a fail to find any connection whatsoever, in any way, shape or form. I’ll say it straight up: they’d best spend that money on that problematic phone call 911 obvious victim screaming for his life rather than pissing up a rope trying to find a whore to come on the stand and say there is some kind of a questionable connection to pot, and this crime.

          • LeaNder says:

            Well, take a look at this Washington University endeavor.

            My choice is more on the skeptic and the seemingly more scientific side, you know. Aggression is a complex issue. But some must be driving this debate.

            I am obviously with you concerning the phone call.

      • @Prof do you know if there’s a test possible for those 30some blood specs that are all gz’s blood (aside from one or two mixed) from his lil boo boos, that they can determine what kind of narcotics were in his system that night?

        @CraneStation, remember gz’s bouncer ex-coworker said that gz seemed like just a regular guy. he liked to hang out DRINKING with the guys but got fired because of an anger problem when he threw a tipsy lady across the room and injured her ankle.

      • shannoninmiami about the tox in the blood specks: Fred says he does not think they can do this. Not sure, but I am thinking the SOP for tox calls for a minimum amount of sample, unlike DNA. Do we have a toxicologist in the house, by chance?

      • Not sure if I am getting this reply to the right place, but LeaNder, I can sort of see where someone could try to stretch a public information ‘fact sheet’ with a US disclaimer at the top into some kind of an issue, but man, is that ever a stretch. No legit expert would play with this sort of thing, but I have little doubt someone could be hired. It would be a mistake, of course, for the ‘expert,’ but at the rate O;Mara seems to be going… Seriously. Is this the best he can do? Try to quick-like make up some science? I don’t know, but I do see what you are saying. In other words, the lawyer is focusing on a green toenail, on the gigantic elephant sitting in the room.

      • Jun says:

        I could be wrong but they have samples of Fogen’s DNA from that night as well as his prescriptions for drugs so I believe they can argue his drug use on rebuttal but it seems to be a waste of time and diverting from the real issue, which is the murder

        • Well exactly. This seems to be another diversion. Tomorrow it’ll be Trayvon Martin got a B minus, therefore he is yada yada…talk to the hand. I swear, that’s what the state’ll do if O’Mara continues. He’ll get back handed.

        • I believe the police took the defendant’s buccal swab the day after he killed Trayvon.

          • fauxmccoy says:

            professor says:

            I believe the police took the defendant’s buccal swab the day after he killed Trayvon.

            that is my recollection as well. to be clear though, there is absolutely no drug use info to be obtained in such a swab, is there?

      • Malisha says:

        Cops at the University of Virginia told my son once that they wished the kids would stop drinking and go back to smoking pot “like they did in the 70s” because “drunk kids are violent but potheads sit in a circle and say ‘oh wow oh wow’ on Saturday night.”

    • This particular defense motion just might win the prize as the most ridiculous of all its motions. The trace amount of marijuana would not have affected TM’s perception or behavior. There is no serious doubt about that.

      Therefore, the evidence is irrelevant and inadmissible under Rule 402 (no probative value) and prejudicial under Rule 403 (misleading).

      Besides, marijuana does not cause people to suddenly become violent. If anything, the opposite would occur.

      Alcohol, of course, is a different matter and there is no evidence that TM had consumed alcohol.

      • groans says:

        (Geez … maybe O’Mara – and especially West – should try a toke or two. It could cure their histrionics and help them see the entire case in a whole new light.)

        Another motion the defense posted today is for the court to set a “reasonable fee” to get Tom Owens (audio expert) to appear for deposition. Apparently Owens requires a fee of $3,300 – paid in advance – to testify in a deposition! And, of course, O’Mara thinks that’s too high and wants the court to set a reasonable fee – which, naturally, could not possibly exceed O’Mara’s own [as if!] $400/hour fee.

        Gotta admit, I got a giggle or two from reading the motion.

        But I’ve never heard of a witness, expert or not, demanding a fee from the “other side” to provide deposition testimony. Is this common practice?

        Click to access 052113_reasonable_fee.pdf

        • Xena says:


          Another motion the defense posted today is for the court to set a “reasonable fee” to get Tom Owens (audio expert) to appear for deposition.

          Ahhh. So O’Mara and West believe that their motion for a Frye hearing will be denied.

          • Owens wants $3,300 to sit for the deposition, which isn’t surprising since the defense has acquired a bit of a reputation for not paying its creditors (i.e., the security firm). Defense wants to pay him less than $1,000.

          • Xena says:


            Owens wants $3,300 to sit for the deposition, …

            Understood, but the defense does not want any audio experts to testify at trial. Their motion to set a reasonable fee appears to contradict their motion for a Frye hearing.

          • I see your point.

            Yes, it’s odd that they would be pressing forward with his deposition, if they believed they would get and win a Frye hearing.

            On the other hand, they are running out of time and should take his deposition as it is getting to now-or-never time and his conclusion hurts their case.

            They should have dealt with the audiology and other forensic issues last year instead of waiting until less than a month before trial.

          • Xena says:


            They should have seen dealt with the audiology and other forensic issues last year instead of waiting until less than a month before trial.

            O’Mara thought he was going to delay trial for 3 years, then have the case dismissed on the basis that GZ should not have been charged. The treehouse had it all figured out for him.

        • An expert is entitled to be paid for their time and it’s not unusual for them to insist on a full day’s pay for less than a full day’s time because they often have to spend hours waiting and pretty much cannot plan on doing anything else during the day they are scheduled to testify in a deposition or trial. If travel is is involved, they may insist on two days pay, plus expenses.

          I doubt if any experts feel warm and fuzzy about O’Mara and West. They probably figure they have no reason to be accommodating.

      • LeaNder says:

        Actually it is a bit ridiculous but revelatory that they write that State told them Owen would demand that amount.

        Strictly they could simply have looked up his site:

        Court Testimony:
        Deposition, Consulting

        $ 3,300.00 per day for NY and NJ. Testimony, Deposition, and Consulting outside of NJ/NY are quoted on a case by case basis. All expenses for first class travel, business class hotels, car rental, food or other expenses will be collected in advance.

      • Malisha says:

        And you’re not even allowed to murder potheads!

        As to research, some fine institution should investigate which activity is more closely associated with violence: carrying loaded handguns or smoking marijuana.

      • two sides to a story says:

        The Treepers think a handgun is an innocuous tool and marijuana is a weapon of mass destruction wielded only by thugs.

    • Rachael says:

      @gbrbsb: “JM just posted Defence filed motion for Nelson to bar State’s motion to bar toxicology reports and testimony. Apparently MOM & Co are trying to link GZ’s, “he’s on drugs or something”, with Trayvon’s MJ use for which there is apparently evidence Trayvon took MJ up to Brandy’s to smoke while there, and the State’s toxicologist testified that the low amount of THC in Trayvon’s blood could be due to his being a chronic user.

      So what is the connection between he’s on drugs or something and Trayvon smoking pot – that it’s okay now to shoot kids for smoking pot??

      Makes no sense to me. So what if he did? AFAIK, that doesn’t mean we shoot kids for it. Heck, it is even legal now (sort of) where I live.

      • Two sides to a story says:

        What evidence that “Trayvon took MJ up to Brandy’s to smoke while there”? Speculation that there really is unreleased evidence?

        There is hearsay that his cousin mentioned getting high the night Trayvon’s death. But we also know that various FB accounts may have been hacked.

        Would it be okay to shoot people who want to shoot people for smoking pot? :/ I swear, bringing up the old reefer madness arguments is a great selling point for Fogen’s paying supporters again. Makes ’em feel safer, I suppose.

      • Two sides to a story says:

        *night before*

  18. So, I have to ask the obvious. Prosecutor speaking now. How do you get up in the morning, drink coffee, put your pants and clothes on, and then drive to a courthouse someplace and ask a bunch of people to kill somebody?

    • The same people that get up in the morning and decide which suspected enemy in a sovereign country are we going to attack with a drone fired missile today…..which may by the way leave collateral damage (insert dead civilians)…..

      Which orders are passed own…and followed by other people, which when the missile hits it’s intended target….have a big ATTA BOY………

      Those kinds of people?

      • Sounds about right. The America Fuck Yeah people.

        Crap like this makes me wonder sometimes if I even belong as a member of the human race. It’s all just…disorienting and wrong.

      • Two sides to a story says:

        I’m sorry that I set you off with a different opinion and you get upset with me MMP. I’ve always felt that you’re a warm and funny and kind person even when I didn’t agree with your comments and I never intended that anything I’ve written be a personal attack, but rather just wanted to argue a different viewpoint.

        Strange breed, the dealing death people . . . sometimes I’ve wished harm on someone for a day or two but actually doing it, whether in a personal or institutional way like arguing for a death penalty, is almost beyond comprehension. You have to see people as “others” or objects and dispensable.

        • ” You have to see people as “others” or objects and dispensable”

          Isn’t that what the military teaches our soldiers?

          It’s what I was taught…..and sung marching songs about killing our enemies…

          That is until we normalize relations with the former enemy….then they get to be people again……

          No probs with you…….I think we both get a little opinionated at times and clash?

        • Xena says:

          @Two sides. Should I send MMPat to the corner? 🙂

      • OMG, he’s so young! And that voice, so timeless and beautiful, thank you!

      • Two sides to a story says:

        LOL – Xena, the warrior Goddess. Do whatever your conscience dictates!

        Well, MMP, everybody has an opinion. I think you feel attacked if someone disagrees with you, on bad days or something. And I probably enjoy disagreeing too much on some days. I’m always told what a rebel I am and that I like to argue.

        Today does feel like a strangely emo kind of day though.

        • No it wasn’t when someone disagreed with me… was when someone said I hadn’t been around enough mentally ill people to know of what I spoke.

          When that’s who I was around 9 hours a day 5 days a week to get a check……

          Yet one says I don’t have any experience with them….

          Not disagreement…..Just pissed me off making assumptions about someone you know nothing about……..”he looks suspicious”

          Nuff Said

      • Two sides to a story says:

        PS – I don’t think I’m a deliberate button pusher, though I’ve been accused of that too. Sometimes two people just have a chemistry that flares up, even online. Maybe we have conflicting astrological stuff.

      • Two sides to a story says:

        MMP – I think you’re making some negative assumptiions about what I said and turning it into a personal attack on my part when all I did was disagree with your opinion and gave my opinion of the same topic.

        Like I said in another post, I’ve always seen you as a good guy and although I’ve disagreed with your opinion at times, I don’t feel I’ve made any negative assumptions about you personally. But never mind. I may have used clumsy or unclear language.

        I don’t have a good enough memory to even carry on a conversation like this because I can barely remember what I ate two hours ago let alone remember a comment I tried to make diplomatically 8 hours ago. Which is a good thing because if I get upset with someone, it doesn’t last long because I can never remember what I’m upset about later. And in this case I wasn’t upset with you, I just saw things in a different way and responded because this looks like a discussion site to me.

        But apologies for any perceived slight. A slight was never intended. I seem to push your buttons, so I’ll refrain from disagreeing in the future – well, if I can remember to. 😀

      • Two sides to a story says:

        LOL, MMP – I have no idea your stardust is bigger than my stardust means.

      • two sides to a story says:

        Okay then.

  19. This was a powerful mitigation closing by the defense.

    • Good…..Yet “should we judge people on the WORST thing they’ve done in their lives?”

      Hummmmm…Wonder what the WORST thing hitler ever did in his life?

  20. Dennis says:

    Like I said before, we shouldn’t execute humans. Instead, use these soulless monsters like Jodi Arias for chemical and drug testing. Let the innocent mice go!

    I know some of you are going to say this is evil…but hey I’m sure all of you guys use drugs and chemicals everyday that were given to innocent animals that died to ensure your safety. I don’t value animal life to be less than a human life.

    • Think I paid 7 bucks for the steak I’m havin’ tonight……..

    • Dennis,

      Your comment is unacceptable. There is no evidence that Jodi Arias is a soulless monster. There is no evidence that anyone is. As for chemical and drug testing, it should not be done to animals or anyone.

      Seriously, your comment is outside civilized society and you need to reexamine and reject it. Nazis and their ilk believed that crap. I do not and it is not welcome here.

      • elcymoo says:

        I agree with you about Dennis’s comment, Professor. I haven’t been able to bring myself to follow the Arias trial closely, but not long ago, I heard that she’d been diagnosed with borderline personality disorder. That’s one of the most difficult mental disorders to treat, and one that often goes undiagnosed.

        I have a close relative who was diagnosed with it in middle age, and knowing that helped me understand many of the problems her family members, friends and three husbands had in coping with her instability.

      • Dennis says:

        I am entitled to my own opinion. This is America. How is this a civilized society when people have to own a gun in their home just to feel safe. Not to mention the CIA and Mossad murdered 3000+ people on 9/11 to start a massive war in the middle east. Sure, I want justice for Trayvon Martin. But the world is falling apart and people need to wake up and do something about it.

        • Where I live (in a forest) it would take the VOLUNTEER fire dept. at least 15 / 20 minutes to get here…… I own fire extinguishers..

          It would take as long for the Deputies get here should we have an intruder…..human or Bear……..I’ll just wait on 911.

          You want a conspiracy? check

      • Two sides to a story says:

        I don’t own a gun (never have) and live in a neighborhood with a fairly high crime rate in a major metropolitan area and I don’t feel particularly unsafe or feel the need to take any more than simple precautions, like good locks and security doors and common sense precautions like not running around alone late at night and not making overt displays of “wealth” that tempt thieves or other abusers. And keeping a dog around who can hear better than I can an respond to noises with barking. I lived the same way when I lived for nearly two decades in a rural environment that was probably far more safe crimewise, except for the sheriff’s department taking up to 30 minutes to respond if there was a problem. I could leave doors unlocked there but usually locked them at night anyway, because why tempt fate? Otherwise, I didn’t feel any particular need to arm myself to make myself feel any safer there either. Our perception of safety or danger is often more about what messages we run in our own heads.

      • Two sides to a story says:

        Dennis? Me? Elcymoo?

        I don’t recall moving a fire extinguisher I think I had where I last lived . . . I have a vague memory of someone giving me one or having found one in the shed when I moved in and having tucked it away in a corner of the kitchen. If I have one now, it would be in storage because I’m living with an elderly relative and whatever I haven’t given away or sold has been packed away for quite some time.(I’m an economic migrant from one of a handful of states with the worst economies after the crash of 2008 and my relative needs some assistance with medical issues.) The last time I had to put a fire out it was a grassfire in the yard several years ago and the garden hose worked nicely.

        And my ex accidentally started a fire in a bedroom with a candle years ago and that also was handled with a garden hose and a towel and not a fire extinguisher. I think there was a fire extinguisher somewhere in that house but the room had an exterior patio door and the hose was more convenient and no end to water, whereas a fire extinguisher is pretty limited. Wasn’t a cooking oil or electrical fire , so the water solution was perfect – whatever that info is worth.

        Are you comparing guns to fire extinguishers? Apples to oranges?

  21. <a href="Livestream Link“>Here’s the livestream link.

  22. Closing arguments in the penalty phase are scheduled to begin shortly . . .

  23. I hate to nit-pick at this awful point in time, but she’s got several things wrong about prison life as well. She ain’t gonna be running any shows in prison- that’s fantasy. A minor quibble, but still, if a juror happens to have knowledge, her statements and pronouncements can, once again, be viewed as being dishonest.

    For example, inmates teaching classes is not allowed in some prisons. Inmates starting a bunch of programs sounds wonderful, but if it isn’t true or possible, best left unsaid, IMO.

    I wrote about inmates teaching here:

    • Two sides to a story says:

      But aren’t the suggestions itself a good thing even if she can’t pull them off from the inside? There are outside organizations that can and do organize prison classes, programs, etc. At least she’s thinking some positive thoughts even if fueled by narcissism. I’d give her brownie points for lobbing a positive thought into the universe . . . it’s a baby step in the right direction, though she has miles and miles to go for transformation. The first big step would be realizing and admitting how ill she is.

      • Yes, I do agree with you on that. The thoughts are good, for real, and I think she was trying to get at the redemption aspect. That’s a good thing, and unfortunately it is more the system and its limits than the person who committed the crime. Our prison system is not showing interest at the moment, in bettering people. I guess the narcissism jumped out at me a bit on this one though. Anything could happen, but I don’t think she made a powerful leniency argument today. Her lawyer did a better job than she did, just my opinion, and granted, I have not followed this case throughout.

      • Two sides to a story says:

        I’m glad to hear her lawyer did a better job. Maybe her legal team is more principled than I gave them credit for. They seem to not care at times. But I’m not following the case much, just seeing bits and pieces and comments here. I don’t think I could stand to make a hobby of following these cases – too depressing on so many levels!

      • Whatever she does…..she WILL find the religion of her choice while behind bars….most do….And rest in the comfort that her chosen supreme being has forgiven her even if no one else has.

        Don’t get me wrong….the have been people that have been imprisoned for a myriad of crimes…..Only to come out and be productive, helpful members of society……Alas….they are in the minority

    • aussie says:

      Yeah, all those programs she’s gong to run?? sounded like she’s campaigning to be Governor of the prison, not about to be sent down for life.

      • she can hire fogen for security

      • Yes, and I do see what TwoSides was saying as well. It’s just that it came across not quite right. This whole case is heartbreaking. I don’t believe in the death penalty, but I have said before, there was a murder in my family that changed us all forever. My heart goes out to the Alexander family. For one thing, I feel like I don’t know much about Travis, except that he is forever ‘the slain boyfriend,’ and I think that’s just awful for everyone. I wish we weren’t even having these discussions, for real.

      • Two sides to a story says:

        “sounded like she’s campaigning to be Governor of the prison”

        Definitely typical of NPD.

      • ladystclaire says:

        @Two Sides, LOL I swear I did not see your comment until after I posted my comment about Mayor Jodi of her cell block. this is very uncanny to say the least.

    • ladystclaire says:

      @Crane Station, Jodi is going in which ever prison she is sent to, as the mayor of her cell block. what with all of those changes she is going to implement, especially with the going green and recycling, SHE’S THE MAYOR. BTW, every inmate is going to be required to grow their hair long and, when it’s time for a haircut, Mayor Arias will order them to donate to locks of love and, then the entire ritual starts all over again. this woman’s elevator doesn’t go all the way to the top.

  24. Xena says:

    I’m against the death penalty, but for those states that have it, it is law and I would anticipate for the jury to decide a death sentence in a case such as the Arias case. Her case is not one where it’s doubtful she committed murder. The Arias jury found cruelty and that conveys they already considered the death penalty.

    • I am opposed to the death penalty for anyone in any case, no matter what they did.

      I do not believe Jodi Arias will be a danger to anyone in prison.

      The jurors in her case have gone through the death qualification process, so they believe in the death penalty and probably will impose it.

      Unfortunately, she did not give them much of a reason not to impose it.

      Her allocution was awful.

      • Xena says:


        The jurors in her case have gone through the death qualification process, so they believe in the death penalty and probably will impose it.

        That’s the thing — Arizona has the death penalty and a jury was chosen that qualifies to issue it. I would never qualify for such a jury.

      • Two sides to a story says:

        Somehow it strikes me as barbaric that only jurors who have no problem dispensing the death penalty are allowed to serve on a case. It’s troubling. I would never make it on a jury either.

        At least we know that Jodi oossibly spoke honestly in the only way she knew how, as deficient and troubling and narcissistic as it was.

        I did finally go look at the video of her allocution. I didn’t find it as shocking as some people. Her mental handicap is certainly clear.

        Some people felt she was using reverse psychology in her last media interview by saying she wanted to die.

        Perhaps she’s actually gamed the system with her allocution and once given the death penalty, will request that she be given the needle ASAP . . . it’s really difficult to tell when someone is that unbalanced. Typically we all want to be happy and avoid suffering . . . Facing the life she created through her obsession and anger has to be mind-boggling no matter which way you spin it.

        We could say something similar about Fogen and his obsession with NW and his delusion that he needed to carry a firearm at all times. He would have been far better off to have kept that puppy locked up at home. And his shocking Hannity interview was not so very different from Jodi’s revelations – his leaning toward sociopathic affect was clearly revealed on national TV.

        We’re sure getting some valuable insight into crime and mental illness by observing and discussing these folks . . .

  25. amsterdam1234 says:

    I find it hard to comprehend that I am watching someone pleading for her life and who now has to wait for the thumbs up or down.

    • Two sides to a story says:

      I’m not watching, but it is gutwrenching to know there is such tremendous suffering in the world – Jodi is the epitome of horrible suffering, just as much as Travis was, but in a different way.

      The same can be said of Fogen and Trayvon – the only difference is in the type of suffering.

      Life is full of strange paradoxes.

      • Two sides to a story says:

        PS – I think she should be allowed life in prison and to do the things she thinks will help others even though it may appear twisted – it’s a baby step toward redemption. Being dispatched to the next world isn’t particularly transformative, but even though she’s a pathological liar and a murderer, even the least little things she can do while confined in prison that serve others help to transform herself and create good karma and merit for herself.

      • lurker says:

        Two sides–from the brief look that i had yesterday, I don’t know that she is capable of redemption, as she is too disconnected from reality. My brief impression brings to mind a few mentally suffering people I have actually known, as well as Farrah Fawcett’s excellent portrayal of Diane Downs in the movie Small Sacrifices.

        Arias’ laundry list of benefits to justify her continued life in prison (donating her hair to Locks of Love, tutoring prisoners in Spanish and American Sign Language) had such a character of the bizarre.

        I expect that she may have unwittingly given the jury reason to look long and carefully at the death penalty for someone who–while attempting to justify her own ability to live a life as a contributor to society (even the society of prison)–clearly has little understanding of life or human relationships. It’s sort of a “OK, I’m guilty, lets move on” expression that completely overlooks even the possibility of understanding responsibility for her actions.

        I am not advocating death for her. Just want to be clear that I also see little hope of her finding redemption–and particularly not from those things that she read off to the jury yesterday.

      • two sides to a story says:

        Lurker, while I agree with you on a practical level, I don’t think any human is really qualified to judge the depth of another human heart or soul, or to gauge their spiritual progress.
        There are many fascinating teaching stories in Buddhism about heinous murderers who become enlightened teachers. The point of these being that we really don’t know what anyone else has the capacity to become. There is also a saying in Hinduism something to the effect that the drunk lying in the street is living his last lifetime before enlightenment.

      • Malisha says:

        Lurker, I think there is a difference between “redemption” — whatever that may be — and what I will call “co-humanning.” My background is in early childhood care/education because education IS the organism that sprouts from early childhood care. I find them inseparable. (Caveat: I am uneducated so I just fool with ideas that I get from experience.) So I have a sort of opposite-to-original-sin notion of what a person is at birth. She is without “sin.” She is utterly selfish because at that point in her life, her job is to get what she needs and she has NO OTHER JOB. Brought up respectfully, and with her life interest fulfilled to a degree greater than some arbitrary and unmeasurable minimum (say 70% just so we have a number), she will become an adult person who can co-human very nicely — again, to one degree or another. She may be Hell on Wheels as a wife but a great physicist; she may be a cosmetician who makes her clients wish they were bald but a great mom; she may be the finest soprano at the Met but a spendthrift or a compulsive hoarder, any combination of “goods” and “bads” is possible, not to mention the “OKs” and the “Uh-ohs” mixed in.

        But what does it take to contribute to the development of a person who knifes, stabs and shoots someone to death for not loving her? Or who chases down a child and shoots him in the heart for not groveling enough to stoke your failing ego on a drizzling dark evening?

        Let’s say it’s a continuum of effects that occur most often when there is a total of 69% or 51% or 33% or 16% of the elements a child needs to fulfill his or her “life interest” by age 28 or 18 or whatever…

        There is no way to know what happens and how it will work within the mind and body of any one person. And there is no way to standardize, quantify or even qualify these things.

        Jodi Arias could not co-human to a minimally acceptable degree (for our society) on the day she killed Travis Alexander; but on that same day, a man her age in a Middle-Eastern country could have committed exactly the same crime against a former sexual partner and still could have been judged by his society as not only excusable and understandable, but even as “honorable” and sympathetic. A mere ten years ago a judge in a mid-Atlantic state, sentencing a man for brutally killing a woman for “cheating,” said: “Any man would have applied at least SOME punishment.”

        Jodi Arias is a murderer. I don’t know anything about “redemption” for her — that is probably a religioous issue and for one thing, prisons are great for religion. (To a certain degree I believe that extremely religious people out here in the rest of the world are expressing their own status as prisoners of one sort or another.) But my question would be: Can she learn to co-human non-harmfully or even co-human in such a way as to incorporate into her own personality some degree of accountability and change.

        I won’t give my GUESS as to whether the answer to that question is yes or no (or “more yes than no” or “more no than yes”) because it would be an uneducated guess. But that is how I would phrase my question.

    • Rachael says:

      When you put it that way, it is pretty pathetic. O’m glad I don’t have cable and am not watching it. It is like watchong Chtistians thown tp lions or a picnic at a hanging for entertainment. I don’t want to paryy to it. I’m out of hete now. It is just too much. All of it.

  26. I do not believe in the death penalty for several reasons, but I think it is highly likely that this will be her sentence. I was, quite frankly, shocked at the content of her allocution today. IANAL, but she really needed to focus on the regret, and how unbelievably, terribly and deeply sorry she is that she lost her mind that day and killed Travis in such a brutal manner. That stunt with the ‘survivor’ t-shirt basically flipped the bird to the jury, and I don’t think they will be spending time searching for reasons not to deliver this sentence.

    To go on and on about how wonderful her life will be in prison and to go on and on about any other wonderfulness needed to be tabled, IMO.

    • Rachael says:

      I agree with you totally and where the hell are her lawyers?

    • Oh no she didn’t. Good Lord, sorry mountainmanpat, I missed that part, so I had to look it up for myself- you were right——>

    • No doubt Crane……All about jodie….all she can do to help others….Hell she was a dropout (so was I) she didn’t get her GED until in jail…at 27…(I got mine at 18 in the Army)

      Her “art” some of which we know is copied….

      I’m on the fence with the DP………if beyond a doubt….and requested? Yeah…..mcveigh & gillmore being examples.

      jodie?…I could really give a shit….as long as her channel goes off the air….and no reruns…(lifetime is already making a movie) 😦

      • Rachael says:

        She is disgusting. There are no words for how disgusting she is and the fact that they will immortalize her with a movie makes me sick.

      • Two sides to a story says:

        Is it the person or the actions that are disgusting?

      • bettykath says:

        Good point, twosides, thanks for making it. it’s too easy to paint a person with the brush of one action as if that is all that person is or can be.

      • groans says:

        I haven’t followed the case, but from what I’ve seen as it’s wrapping up, she actually does seem pretty disgusting. She seems extremely manipulative, to me. From evidence photos, she’s physically transformed herself from a blonde siren to schoolmarm to Miss Librarian. That jumped out at me immediately and was amazing, and it speaks volumes about her ability to masquerade herself to fit whatever “persona” she perceives might gain her some advantage at any given point in time.

        I haven’t found a video of much of, or her entire, allocution, either. But it was just TOO WEIRD watching her explain that her family was “the element” that always, or almost always, kept her from committing suicide.

        “Almost always” prevented her suicide? Really? WTF??

        Now, THAT reveals a fundamental disconnect from reality and/or attempted manipulation of the highest order! JMO.

      • Malisha says:

        Groans, you’ve got to read David Cross’s “Top Ten List of Top Ten Lists” on which we find:

        “Nine out of Sylvia Plath’s ten top reasons not to commit suicide.”

      • two sides to a story says:

        Groans, I have no clue whether you’re male or female, but your arguments make you sound like a misogynist. Women typically go through all sorts of “looks” in their lifetime. It’s not possible for a brunette in jail for the past 5 years to maintain their blonde siren look. This reminds me of placing the blame on a rape victim for the way they look.

        I’m sure not discounting that Arias is manipulative and a liar, and probably does assume certain personas to some degree, because from what we can see of her in court and in interviews, she exhibits all the traits of someone with narcissistic personality disorder. But I’m also keenly aware that people really rag on her in sexist ways that they wouldn’t dream of doing if she were a male offender. Just my two cents about your opinion and no personal offense intended.

        • She changed the hair color back to brown PRIOR to her trip to Az. to murder Travis……..Another part of her plot to remain anonymous….and undetected….same with the gas cans….same with turning off the cell phone.

          AGAIN…the hair color was changed prior to her murdering Travis.

        • cielo62 says:

          Two Sides~ gz ALSO did that chameleon thing. After the murder, when he was finally arrested, he got slimmer and clean cut. Gone was the goatee and bald head, skinhead-type look. It’s all part of the manipulation that is actually encouraged by lawyers to make a certain impression with the judge and jury. This has always been true even before TV. Don’t tell me Jodi didn’t have anything to do with arranging her wardrobe and choosing her court persona. But little did she realize that you can’t put lipstick on a pig.


      • groans says:

        @MMP – Thanks for the background info.

        @Two sides – No offense intended? What a relief. Silly me, I thought you were talking like misogyny is a BAD thing!

      • groans says:

        @ Malisha – very funny. Tragic story, Sylvia Platt! I looked her up – I had never heard of her, being shamefully ignorant in the realms of art, literature, and poetry (i.e., anything very sophisticated). Thanks for the education stimulus!

      • Malisha says:

        I think you CAN put lipstick on a pig. It looks ridiculous but you can do it.

    • gbrbsb says:


      That stunt with the ‘survivor’ t-shirt basically flipped the bird to the jury, and I don’t think they will be spending time searching for reasons not to deliver this sentence.

      So could it be exactly what she was hoping for. Her stated wish to receive the death sentence didn’t work so maybe she’s using reverse logic. I am against the death penalty and in the EU it has fortunately, justly and wisely been abolished, but if I were her then I may take my own life rather than spend 50/60 years in jail.

      • This is exactly what I was thinking that maybe she did. It almost seemed like a thinly veiled request. Odd that no one in her family spoke out either. I don’t understand it.

        I am glad the EU has done that.

      • lurker says:

        Brings to mind the Chardon High School killer who opened his shirt to reveal the word “Killer” on his t-shirt.

        But that kid was plainly disturbed.

  27. Second…

    The “survivor” shirt was not a good idea…..

    5 years in jail yet she claims she just learned about what life in prison is like?……..give me a break….

    Oh and helping other inmates

    1. Lurnin how two reed…

    2. Shank making for beginners……

    3. How to stab effectively.

    • Rachael says:

      Survivor shirt? I saw that you posted that on the other page. I’m not following this, but you have GOT to be kidding me!! That is DISGUSTING and give a really bad name to those who really have survived DV. The AUDACITY!!

      • Not shittin’ U a bit Sis….she even held one up for the jury……

        Yup….all about jodie….the victim

      • Rachael says:

        I still don’t believe in state-sanctioned killing, but…

        I’m at a loss for words. I feel that same kick in my gut that I felt when GZ said “God’s plan.”

        I would be VERY surprised if she does not get sentenced to death. She just made a mockery out of the system, her lawyers, women who have been abused and much more – but I have to run off for a moment.

      • Two sides to a story says:

        Both Fogen and Arias Fogenette are clearly mentally ill.

    • Lynn says:

      I saw that “survivor” shirt and my daughter made the comment…is she going to place a picture of Travis with the ‘no symbol’ and the words “not a survivor” on the back???

      Seriously, who told her this was a good idea?

  28. Trained Observer says:

    What did you all think about her allocution and what do you think the sentence will be? — Frederick Leatherman

    Not much. LWOP.

  29. Rachael says:



    [Your friendly moderator added the correct word]

    • Rachael says:

      Anyway, as I said, I didn’t following the Arias case, but from what I see, it looks like it was planned and a decision made, but I don’t know and I didn’t hear any of the trial.

      When it comes to GZ, I don’t believe that his intent that night was to kill Trayvon at the time, however, an angry man with a gun is no accident – unless maybe an accident waiting to happen. I mean you don’t carry a gun with you if you don’t plan to use it. Oh, one may hope to not need to use it, but the reason you take a class and all is so you know how to and plan to. So even then, self-defense is “planned.” (This is all my opinion, of course.)

      It is like when you have a car crash with drunk driving, it is no accident.

      Again, I don’t feel that GZ set out that night to kill Trayvon, but he did make it very clear that he did not intend for this one to get away and when you have a gun and you are “walking in the same direction” as someone else, but for not walking in the same direction would there be a problem, but for there no gun…

      So anyway, I guess what I am saying is that as soon as GZ got out of his car so that this one wouldn’t get away, by doing so with a gun, he made plans to kill. By taking his gun with him, he knew there was a chance he might use it, whether he had to or not, because that is why you have one. He did not need to put himself in that position. But he did. And the fact that someone ended up dead is no accident.

      And this is all for starters.

      Then there is Trayvon begging for his life and all that surrounding stuff as well.

      • Rachael says:

        Please disregard this post or move it somewhere appropriate – I just didn’t want anyone yelling because I posted “first” without saying something. I’m sorry.

      • Rachael says:

        No, I don’t mean that post – I mean my long winded post that was off topic. LOL

      • Two sides to a story says:

        I agree with you, Rachael – there’s a certain amount of intention that goes along with something as supposedly innocuous as carrying a gun all or most of the time in the first place. We have the saying “good intentions line the path to hell” or whatever for that reason.

        I’m sad that we live in a topsy turvy world in which legalities often surpass morality as a factor, and also that people who are mentally ill often do not know it, are not treated, and even are treated legally as if they have all their marbles.

        I visualize the day in which we truly have officers of the peace, in which anyone with any sort of a mental or emotional disorder can find the treatment they need, and in which the rare instances of crime are treated with far more compassion and healing wisdom than they are now.

        As much as I wish Fogen to be convicted, I also wish that the system was far different and would have A) not allowed him to carry a weapon in the first place and B) to have adjusted his mental -emotional problems long before this and C) in a more enlightened world, he’d not need a gun anyway, and D) barring A, B, an C, that prisons were therapeutic centers that truly brought people back into balance rather than make many even more crazy or embittered. It is only the strongest and most wise people and and possibly those endowed with some grace and good karma who emerge from tprison transformed now, and there’s something fundamentally wrong and barbaric with this system from LE all the way through the justice system and into the penal institutions.

        Personally, I think a lot of murderers are probably guilty but insane and at the very least, in a state of temporary insanity – I mentioned not guilty by reason of insanity in the previous thread, but guilty but insane probably fits Jodi and many other offenders better. There is a level of depravity and the knowledge of right and wrong, and the choice to misuse anger, but there is also a handicap that fosters poor decision making in people with certain disorders. I don’t think our legal system handles any of these subtle nuances particularly well. We’re barely out of the dark ages of abuse and indifference toward the mentally emotionally handicapped.

        May all beings be free of suffering.

        • I agree with you philosophically, but I disagree with your statement,

          We’re barely out of the dark ages of abuse and indifference toward the mentally emotionally handicapped.

          I believe we have plunged back into the dark ages after briefly emerging from them. We house the mentally ill and emotionally handicapped in our jails and prisons without treatment.

      • Trained Observer says:

        He wasn’t sure when or where, but I’m convinced Fogen planned to personally apprehend a crimester to fulfill his fantasies of becoming a community hero and budding security enterpreneur. IMO that pre-determined back-burner plan got moved up front and spiraled out of control when Trayvon materialized.

        Dang (as the Fogens like to say in their jailhouse call tapes) if it didn’t seem like a good night to bag a fuckin’ coon, goon, punk, just take your pick.

        Yes, after things got rolling there was a moment’s hesitation as he lifted the hoodie button to confirm a straight-to-the-heart aim, taking care, of course, to not shoot his own hand. Should he … or shouldn’t he? But it was a now or never deal, you see., Cops were coming any second.

        So he played what he thought were virtually sure odds: Hell, everybody knows these balaack thugs are up to their eyeballs in crime, and who’d be complaining if he disposed of one on a rainy Sunday night?

        But dammit, that Trayvon Martin screwed up his dream. Turned out he was a candy-carrying teenager without even a knife. He belonged in the complex, likely more so than the Fogens who weren’t paying their rent.

        Plus he had a mom and dad who were smart enough to know who to call when it became clear Sanford cops werent too eage to make an arrest.

        And double crappola: Turns out Trayvon was yakking on the phone during nearly the whole episode with a friend on a cellphone with a nifty GPS system.

        Well, like Pops Zimmerman likes to complain, it’s The System that’s gonna get his son.

        When evidence stacks up, the murderer goes down. Yes, it’s a conservative charge. But jurors will know that, too. And they won’t think twice giving him life in the pen, knowing he’s dman lucky he didn’t get a charge that would have put him in the chair.

      • lurker says:

        It has certainly seemed to me that Z’s actions in following Trayvon armed amounted easily to depraved indifference. What could the possible outcomes have been? And neither Z nor anyone else has reported that Z’s interactions with Trayvon were at all rational on his part. Serino pointed out that in his narrative Trayvon offered him the opportunity to explain himself (“you gotta problem, Homey?”), but Z failed to do so (“No, I don’t have any problem.”

        While I don’t suspect that Z. has great capacity for planning elaborate schemes (or at least not very well, considering the whole Pay Pal fiasco), I think he envisioned capturing Trayvon and turning him over to the police–who would magically discover him to have been up to no good, maybe tracing back to a garage full of stolen property (actually, even thinking that far seems to be straining his faculties). But he remained willfully insensitive to the very real possibility (as he must have been taught in gun ownership classes or somewhere) that carrying a gun is a precursor to using a gun–just having it in the waistband is no protection at all.

        I could see a case being made that there had to have been a time of reflection when he pointed the gun at Trayvon, holding him by the sweatshirt, and heard the screams, when he made a choice to go ahead and pull the trigger. Clearly at that point he was in no danger. Again–Serino pointed out that even in his own narrative he had gained “wrist control.” But, I agree with the professor, second degree is a wise and conservative charge. And this is well supported by the evidence as it has emerged. Initially I thought that the evidence would likely only support manslaughter–but it has become clearer and clearer with time that murder is by far the more appropriate charge.

      • Two sides to a story says:

        ” believe we have plunged back into the dark ages after briefly emerging from them. We house the mentally ill and emotionally handicapped in our jails and prisons without treatment.”

        Yes, Yes, Yes! Thank you! The very system is broken and speaks of neglect and apathy. It makes me feel ill and broken to think about it. Really not much different than the days of “bedlam.”

        One day, and not in our lifetimes, people will look back and shake their heads over how primitive the mental health and justice and penal systems in our era became and how badly the system (which is all of us) failed our mentally and emotionally unstable members.

        • Hey the witch trials were the thing of their day….what with all the new technology & interpretations of the bible…..

          Not in our life time….or many life times…..if we last that long?

      • bettykath says:

        ” We house the mentally ill and emotionally handicapped in our jails and prisons without treatment.”

        There, and homeless in the streets.

      • If memory serves me correctly, in was under a republican president, back in the 1980’s, that we began to hear talk about “patient rights” (patients had the right to refuse medication and/or other treatment) and hospitals treating the mentally ill were closed. It was also a time when prisons became the homes of many of those who previously were receiving care in hospitals. The surge in the number of homeless was another outcome of hospital closings.

        I suspect that in another time, many of zimmurderman’s supporters would have been hospitalized in one of the many now closed hospitals for the mentally ill. Needless to say, gz would have been a patient in one of those hospitals. His parents and siblings probably would have been in intensive psychotherapy; and all of them would have been on high dosage psychotropic drugs.

        Question: will there be a discussion of the “type” of person who will be selected to serve on the jury? I’d like to read comments as to the possible make up of the jury, i.e. men, women, black, white, Asian, Hispanic, young, old, etc


        • We’ve had a few discussions about jury selection and we will have more.

          At the most basic level, the defense wants white racists and the prosecution doesn’t.

          Prosecution wants people who have experienced racism and know that it is alive and well in this country. They want mothers and grandmothers.

      • Malisha says:

        But Lurker, had Fogen chosen to NOT KILL Trayvon Martin, simply holding him at gunpoint for the arrival of the police (which would have necessarily meant that Trayvon Martin would not have been threatened with immediate death and would not have been screaming), the police, upon arrival, would not have had probable cause to search either Trayvon or his alleged garage. At the point in time when they arrived on the scene, his suspiciousness was limited to the fact that FOGEN was suspicious of him. He was unarmed, carrying no drugs, in possession of no contraband, and there were no outstanding warrants on him. His providing a phone number of a parent or guardian would have resulted in identification.

      • Jun says:

        Brandishing a gun at someone is considered aggravated assault with a firearm which is a minimum 20 years I think so perhaps Fogen decided it was better to silence his victim and stage his self defense claim to try and cover up the murder

        And Omara wanting white racist jurors will do him no benefit because they would convict Fogen’s delusional ass for being Hispanic and they would probably tell Fogen to go back to Mexico, as that is how racists are, unreasonable like Fogen, as I am fairly sure white racists would be racist against latinos, as well as a latino claiming to be black as well now

        The only positive from having white racists is that Omara can appeal that the jury was not impartial, that’s about it

      • lurker says:

        Malisha–I don’t disagree, in terms of what any real outcome would have been. But, in George’s mind, being a black kid in a hoodie was an indication of being a part of some organized attempt to rob the residents blind and make fools of them. Just like a good many of his supporters, Z cannot conceptualize of a black kid in a hoodie being anything other than a thug. While he may have sufficient intellect to realize that saying such a thing out loud in accounting for his actions would be foolish, I don’t think that he pulled the trigger to get out of the mess of holding an innocent kid at gunpoint–because I don’t think his mind works that quickly. I think he was filled with all kinds of little gun culture truisms (such as “it isn’t YOUR gun, it is THE gun), he had the gun in his hand, Trayvon was screaming and trying to pull away–blam, situation ended. Everything that followed immediately (“I shot him in self-defense,” whatever phone call, “Am I bleeding?”) best falls into the category of “Oh sh-t, what have I done and how do I get out of it?” Although I suspect that even this was coming about slowly. The next day when he returned to the cop shop he still seemed to be laboring under his own delusion that he had done what he had to do (just like the cops do) and stopped a kid who would otherwise have committed some crime–and had likely already been involved in others.

    • cielo62 says:

      >^..^< Good pounce, Rachael!

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