It’s been an eventful summer. I’ve negotiated my way through massive life changes, and while none of them could be filed under the “no problem” category, they have all been worth the effort. Suffice it to say that I wasn’t lounging at the beach or the pool while catching up on my summer reading list. I was busy “doing the work”, a phrase that means, “I’m taking responsibility for where I’ve been and where I’m going”. Unfortunately, this life shift required time and effort — my time and effort — and it was all I could do to check book sales and reviews (I’m still waiting for that one review that will give me 100 reviews on Volume One of “Behind the Words” — and I’m three reviews away from 50 reviews on Volume 2 — but with 78% of you leaving five star reviews on the first volume, I’m cool with any rating, as long as I can break that barrier, lol). But now, I’m back, my computer is at the ready, and I’m prepared to resume writing, blogging, and posting. Link: Behind The Words, VOLUME 1.
First of all, I’ve come to the conclusion many of you have reached: Jodi Arias is yesterday’s news. I could devote an entire blog to Radar Online’s recently released story — from early September, 2016 — that highlighted breaking news from inside the cement and metal fortress of Perryville Prison. I could refer to the quotes included in the “Arias is a Prison Porter” story that gained little to no attention in contrast to the hundreds of posts that the trial updates garnered.
I mean… sure, we could dissect what a day in the life of a toilet scrubbing, orange jump suited, prison porter looks like, but why bother? Arias has met her fate, and there isn’t a word in the Thesaurus she can use to change the reality of her life. She might call garbage “trash, detritus, refuse, waste, or debris“, but nobody is listening. It’s garbage, and she’s in charge of it. Whether she figures out how to get married in prison or not will only interest us if it actually happens. I’ll revisit her case if, and that’s a big IF:
– she wins an appeal
– ends up in the infirmary
– hurts somebody in orange
– writes a book about her case.
I promise, if the updates are anything beyond pedantic, I’ll be all over them.
What has recently caught my attention is the case of JonBenet Ramsey. JonBenet will always be (courtesy of her mother, former Miss West Virginia 1977, the late Patsy Ramsey) a bleached blond, pageant baby of six years who somehow traveled a life road that led to her to a horrible and irrevocable detour in 1996.
With the advent of the 20th anniversary of this child’s passing upon us, there seems to be a renewed interest in this unsolved murder. I’ve seen Dr. Phil McGraw’s (all three of them) interviews with JonBenet’s brother, Burke. Now 29, Burke’s affect disturbed me (and that opinion was shared by countless viewers who weighed in on the Dr. Phil message board devoted to those episodes), but Dr. Phil assures us that Burke is just nervous and ill at ease in social situations. While watching his eerie, beaming smile during the interview, I immediately thought of the ever-smiling, Colgate-grinned face of Skye Hughes. I also remember Dr. Drew Pinsky cautioning viewers to halt before judging her when it came to Skye uttering words like, “murder” while smiling from ear to ear. He said, just as Dr. Phil said, that the smiling could be a sign of stress. Okay, I thought, maybe this is a face of stress that I’m not used to seeing. However, there are many other things to consider — things that have been brought to light with the technology that wasn’t available prior to 2000.
In addition to Dr. Phil’s interviews, several televised shows (shown on the same network as Dr. Phil) have caused me to rethink this entire case. Dr. Phil almost laughs at any viewer who would look toward the Ramsay’s as the individuals who have something to hide. The other forensic shows, made up of a panel of experts with names like Dr. Henry Lee and Dr. Werner Spitz, came to the opposite conclusion of Dr. McGraw. Of serious interest to me were the conclusions reached by Statement Analysts when it came to their own chilling opinions after dissecting the five page ransom note left on the spiral staircase of the Ramsey’s Boulder, Colorado mansion. I am now almost completely convinced that the ransom note was not written by a kidnapper/murderer, but by a member of the family.
Are you interested in this case? I’m asking because I’m about to seriously delve into it. I will say, from the outset, that I have reached no conclusions as to who did what to whom and when they did it. What I will say is that this case features a cast of characters that shocked me. From a former pedophile/current eunich who claimed responsibility for JonBenet’s death, to a pedophile who carried a photo of JonBenet in his wallet, to a neighbor who spoke of ever increasing sibling rivalry between Burke and his pageant princess sister, to a mother who was a former and faded pageant queen who was afflicted with ovarian cancer and adored her upper class lifestyle, to a father of a multi-million dollar business, to a brother who says he stayed in bed while his mother was “going psycho” while screaming, “Where’s my baby? Where’s my baby?” and who didn’t come out from under the covers when a police officer searched his bedroom with a flashlight. One has to ask, “Is truth stranger than fiction?”.
Ever since Jodi Arias had the microphone, lights, and cameras unplugged on April, 13, 2015, the stage on which her reality show was taped has gone dark. There are no longer any up-to-the-minute videotaped chats — friendly or antagonistic — between the Princess of Perryville Prison and L. Kirk “Trapped With Ms. Arias” Nurmi, Alice “I gave the wrong answer, Mr. Martinez” LaViolette, Dr. Richard “I was in error by not re-administering the tests” Samuels, Dr. Robert “That trial judge indicated that my testimony was completely without merit” Geffner, Darryl “She’s unrecognizable to me now” Brewer, and our all-time favorite interviewer, Juan “Were you crying when you stabbed him?” Martinez.
In place of those daily broadcasts, we are left to sift through the rumor, innuendo, and shadowed statements provided by the anonymous supporters from Arias’ family and approved visitor list. Today, we look at the latest update on Inmate 281129, courtesy of “In Touch Magazine” — a piece highlighted by Bonnie Fuller of “Hollywood Life” and Grace Gerard of “Celeb Dirty Laundry”. There may be other blogs waving this flag, but that’s as far as I’m going in my search.
Hollywood Life? Arias has somehow found her way into the club occupied by those who walk the red carpet in designer duds and pay enormous tax bills for their Hollywood estates? Says who? I don’t get it. Hollywood is synonymous with sprawling and gated properties, household staffs, and the best that money can buy. Perryville Life, by comparison, is synonymous with tiny cells, plastic mattresses, cement, buzzers, locked cages, a staff of trained officers with dinner trays and pepper spray at the ready, and a commissary that may or may not sell the tiny batteries needed to keep the inmates’ private vibrators operating at high speed.
Nevertheless, here’s the big announcement: “JODI ARIAS BOMBSHELL: EIGHT YEARS AFTER MURDERING HER BOYFRIEND IN COLD BLOOD, SHE’S FOUND LOVE BEHIND BARS. The dress, the ring, the cake — all the outrageous details. Now she says she’s going to have a baby!” To get the whole picture, it’s worth noting that an orange clad Arias is on the cover of the magazine (are her parents supposed to buy and save this issue, or should they hide in their house until the next issue replaces their daughter’s wedding announcement?). She’s carrying a bouquet of white roses between her cuffed wrists (an obvious photoshop effort that replaced her typical stack of legal files with flowers she will never plant, nurture, cut, or display again. The next time Arias will be in the vicinity of roses, she’ll be resting in peace at a Yreka funeral home). At the left of the In-Touch Cover, we see a vertical menu of other lesser important stories: “Prince Investigation: Shocking New Evidence”, “First Photo: Josh Duggar Comes out of Hiding”, “Feud Turns Nasty: Kelly’s Revenge on Michael”, and “New Attack on Church: Celeb Scientology Secrets Exposed (with the expected thumbnail photos of Tom Cruise and John Travolta)”.
So, while it’s probably all a bunch of filler intended to extract the last drops of interests from a wet rag called “Jodi Arias”, let’s have a little fun with the possibilities of the upcoming nuptials. So, if you haven’t yet received your invitation, don’t worry — neither have I.
Here’s what the invitation might say:
According to “In Touch”, Arias intends to wear a figure hugging white gown, present a beautiful wedding cake (with or without a file?), and she plans to exchange rings with her beloved. Will the ceremony be according to the dictates of the Mormon faith? We’ll have to wait and see if coffee is served. Will it be according to the dictates of the Wiccan Faith? Probably not…she’s evolved since she and Matt McCartney walked the crooked path together. Maybe Arias will go purely secular with this new guy. Hey, what kind of bouquet will the bride be holding in her cuffed wrists? I think Picasso Lilies are her favorite. In fact, I suggest she just walk the cement aisle carrying her gorgeous “Picasso Lily” print instead of the actual flowers. We all know that Arias’ pencil drawings captured the beauty of those exotic flowers far better than Mother Nature ever could.
“In fact, I suggest she just walk the cement aisle carrying her gorgeous “Picasso Lily” print instead of the actual flowers.”
What about her honeymoon? Well, Arias wants a baby, so says “In Touch”, and she’s going to need a honeymoon if she’s going to get to the point where she’s eating enough Beano, salmon, clams, and candy for two. So, it stands to reason that instead of offering her a slice of wedding cake at her glorious reception, her groom will be handing her a warm-to-the-touch semen specimen and a turkey baster from the Dollar Store.
The Wedding Gift That Keeps On Giving
The whole idea is ludicrous, and it makes me wonder, as far as “In Touch” magazine is concerned, how the latest Arias fable trumped the death of recording artist, Prince. Why is he a thumbnail and she’s the cover photo (in the version I saw online)? It’s time to turn off ALL the lights on whatever stage Arias manages to mount (and we all know how good she is at mounting). Perhaps the most ridiculous comment I read on one of the blogs announcing this story is that if Arias had simply accepted the fact that Travis was ready to move on, she might already be a wife and mother.
Arias is damaged.
Whether she moved on from Travis or not, she would have killed someone. That is her nature. She should never have a child, and metal should always stand between her and the object of her desire or her hatred.
And again, what aboutTravis? He’s the individual who would have moved on to marriage and children, and had he escaped the trap of Arias, that’s exactly what would have happened (and it’s worth mentioning that he wouldn’t have posed any danger to any member of his theoretical family). It sickens me that any publication would even suggest the possibility that Arias could be married (and it’s more than a possibility). Travis made a tragic mistake, and it cost him everything — including a legacy of children and the comfort of knowing he had a spouse. Why should Arias even be given the illusion of a spouse?
Ok… Get back in the chow line, Arias. Pretend it’s a buffet line at your imaginary wedding. That’s about as close as you’re ever going to come to being a bride.
Rest In Peace
PS Even if this whole magazine story is a fraud, we all know that sooner or later, some tabloid would run with a story like this one. In fact, the day will probably come in which Arias will be someone’s better half…
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As Jodi Arias celebrates the caged conclusion of her first year of forever, I thought it would be appropriate to mark this very special anniversary with an update of sorts. For a highway nomad like Arias, a woman who was usually plotting while life blurred by her driver’s side window at 65 MPH, it must be challenging to adapt to a boxy life of cages, cement corridors, slamming metal, and porch railing sized windows that look out on razor wire and a guard tower…
Over the last year, via the dwindling Ambassadors for Arias, we’ve heard about her appellate fund dollar for dollar challenge, the managerial issues that continue to impede the progress of “We are Team Jodi”, and we’ve read the directives penned (literally) by the CEO herself, 281129, as she tells her (microscopic) army where to plant their flags on a landscape populated by law abiding citizens who now rarely think of her. We’ve read that this past year has been marked by the support of a new boyfriend and a self-described rapper. We have learned that the woman who used gutter phrases for all manner of sexual behavior while on camera suddenly claimed ignorance/innocence when it came to understanding the true definition of a phrase the included one of her favorite words on record: cock. As her blood star continues to fade in the blackness that will eventually envelope it, the updates on the stunted and essentially terminated life of 281129 will eventually cease to be.
However, we’re not quite there yet… Let’s remember what most of us (the trial watchers) heard exactly one year ago. Will any of us ever forget the way she, although shackled, took aim and fired at the only lasting remnant of Travis Alexander? In the presence of her slaughtered victim’s family, Arias’ last public statement was arrogantly delivered in the very same courtroom she tried desperately to control for approximately two years. Donning black and white stripes, she said, with more than a hint of irritation, “Judge, I just want to respond to a few of the things that were said earlier. Umm, my legal team and I tried to settle this case on four different occasions…before trial. We tried two times before the 2013 trial, and what Samantha said was not accurate. I was not the one who refused to settle; it was Travises [sic], uh…it was Travises [sic] family who not only refused to settle, and insisted on both trials, but then they bragged about it all over social media — including posting a group photo on the steps of this very courthouse, holding out all of their thumbs down (she lifts her left arm and does a dramatic visual of a “thumbs down” gesture)…refusing to settle (she drops her left arm). As for not wanting the death penalty, it’s my firm belief that death would bring me untold peace and freedom. That’s my personal belief; if I were to die today, I would be free and I would be at peace. For years, that’s exactly what I wanted, but I had to fight for my life, just like I did on June 4, 2008, because I realized how selfish of me it would be to escape accountability for this mess that I created. I have two brothers, two sisters, several nieces and nephews, a mom, a dad, eight aunts…(she pauses in response to what sounds like a baby crying. She glares over her left shoulder until the noise abates)…nine uncles, over 20 cousins that I’ve grown up with, as well as countless friends, all of whom would suffer greatly if I took my own life or allocuted for the death penalty, and then got it. I did not drag Travis through the mud; I protected Travises [sic] reputation for years. I did say he was an influential person. I kept his skeletons in the closet, all to my own detriment, for years. What I testified to was not false; they were not made up. They were not things that I wanted to get out into public either, but when I was on the stand, I told the truth. Your honor was also here during the second trial when a lot of evidence came to light that supported my testimony from people who never even knew me, but who knew Travis. I do remember, as I testified to this — I’m sorry — I think I would have testified to this in the 2014 trial…I do remember (long pause), I do remember the moment when the knife went into Traveses [sic] throat, and he was conscious. He was still trying to attack me. It was I who was trying to get away, not Travis…and I finally did. I never wanted it to be that way, Judge. The gunshot did not come last; it came first, and that was as Travis lunged at me, just as I testified to, and just as this state’s own detective testified to (again, she uses her left hand to gesture, but this time it’s in the general direction of Detective Esteban Flores) before he and Juan got together and decided to change their story for trial. As for not being abused, maybe I wasn’t as badly abused as Travis and his siblings were by their parents, but I didn’t consider it abuse either. I didn’t consider being beaten and hit and all those things abuse. That was discipline in my family. That’s how my parents were disciplined by their parents. That’s why I didn’t consider those things abuse. I understand now that that’s abuse. So, for Samantha to say that I was not a victim of abuse is wrong, because I was. And my family understands that now, and we — like my mom said, I didn’t come with instructions. They did the best they could. They didn’t do it because they were bad parents; they did it because they thought they were disciplining us, and that’s the best that they had. The most important thing I want to say is that I am very sorry for the enormous pain I’ve caused the people that loved Travis. I never thought I would cause so many people so much pain. I live everyday wishing I could undo what I did to Travis and wishing that I could take away their pain and just put it onto myself. To this day, I cannot believe that I was capable of doing something that terrible. I can’t even (long pause)…I’m truly disgusted, and I’m repulsed with myself. I’m horrified because of what I did, and I wish there was some way I could take it back. That’s all I have.”
A meager five of her bloated sentences referenced some alleged form of remorse, but the balance of the speech was devoted to the defense of Jodi Arias. What difference does her family’s understanding of proper forms of child discipline make at this point in time? This wasn’t a CPS hearing; she was being sentenced for First Degree Murder conviction — a crime that had absolutely nothing to do with the mom who concealed a wooden spoon in her purse (supposedly) or the dad who could bench press over 500 pounds (supposedly)— decades earlier.
Secondly, why is she trying to set the record straight as it relates to a survivor, Samantha Alexander? Begging Samantha’s forgiveness would be the right thing to do, but as usual, Arias just refuses to humble herself. She prefers to say, “Samantha is wrong because…” Arias has no access to social media, but if she did, I would wager a bet that she’d continue this argument with Samantha Alexander.
Beyond that insulting content, it’s worth mentioning that there aren’t a lot of survivors of attempted murder who lament the fact that they beat the odds and somehow escaped the intention of their attackers. In fact, not many of those survivors would even discuss a plea deal with a prosecutor. As usual, Jodi Arias is the exception to the rule, and she needs a microphone to explain her unique position. Victims who vanquish their attackers want their names cleared; they want their reputations restored, they want the truth to be told.
Moving on, let’s go behind the words of 281129/Arias and get to the truth. What Arias actually said in that speech was, “I’m not here to beg for mercy. I’m not getting the death penalty I never wanted, and I’ve already been advised that I am going to be sentenced to life without the possibility of parole. The merits of my case won’t get me the appeal I want, so I’m hanging my hopes on the potential of some technical error. The ground, in my opinion, was more than fertile for any number of technical errors. I screwed with you, Judge, so much and so often, and you granted me such latitude that defense attorneys around the country announced that they were shocked by your rulings. It wouldn’t surprise me to learn that in so doing, you violated one of my countless rights to a fair trial. In the middle of my trial in this courtroom, emergency appeals were being handled on my behalf. Yes, I’m that good at obfuscation and confusion. So, as a woman with nothing to lose, I’m getting the last word in, and I’m getting it in today. I’m here to set the record straight. Samantha is wrong. Yes, that woman who sobbed while reciting her victim impact statement, falsely accused me about some stuff, and I don’t like that. So, with every camera and recorder fixed on me, chew on this: My legal team and I — and I did get a team while most of my indicted peers get overworked public defenders — tried to settle this case four times. Yes, I’m frustrated. This case could have easily been settled with a few years and some probation. I’m a first time offender. Where’s my freebie? This case could have been disposed of like a DUI or a first time drug offense. It really crowded my life, and of course I would have settled if the prosecution had been reasonable. Why didn’t we settle? We didn’t settle because Samantha and her family decided to berate me and brag all over social media, even darkening the steps of this very courthouse with her rude thumbs down gesture — aimed at me! How dare they do that? I had to defend my life against their murderous brother, but they’re allowed to mock me? I still want to die, because I’ve made my peace with God and I’m forgiven, even if that means there will be less wigs available to cancer patients. I initially said my family caused me to change my mind on asking for the death penalty. Forget that I said that. Today, I say it’s because I shouldn’t be allowed to escape into the peace of death and avoid responsibility for Travis’ death. That sounds more contrite than my first reason, right? Aside from the 53 family members I can identify who would suffer if I died via lethal injection 13 years from now, I still have some extra cousins and countless friends who would suffer just as greatly if I died in the death chamber. It is of no significance that not a single one of them testified during my mitigation phase. Oh, and now that you know how important I am, I think it’s time to tell you that I wasn’t in a fog when I killed Travis. Actually, I distinctly remember stabbing him in the throat. I remember that indescribable feeling of the knife at first piercing, and then ripping through his flesh, muscle, tendon, and bone. He was alive while that was happening. I was running from him. Yes, he was crawling, but he was a really fast crawler, and I had just been body slammed and all. I did not drag Travis through the mud, but I did drag him back down the hallway and put him in his shower stall. It was a sign of respect — the least I could do. Juan and Flores framed me, changed their story, and basically, wouldn’t let me threaten them with my promise to ruin the Mormon church if they didn’t given me a second degree plea. Also, I was abused, so Samantha can just shut up about me not being abused. I didn’t know that being thrown into a piano was abuse. I didn’t know that being thrown into a door post and being knocked unconscious was abuse. I thought it was discipline. I grew up in the 1980’s and 1990’s, and you know, it might as well have been the dark ages of 1950’s and 1960’s as far as reporting abuse to child protective services was concerned. My parents have now learned their lesson — thanks to me. So, I can’t believe I was capable of fighting for my own life and winning. I wish I could take back the pain people feel, but not the act itself. Otherwise, I’d be dead and he’d be alive. No fair on that. Oh, I also want to leave prison. That’s all I have.”
So… that’s where we left the articulate Ms. Arias. The most recent news coming from behind the barbed wire in the desert — news that Arias allegedly didn’t want released — is the content of her prison shopping list. She’s embarrassed, and that’s according to the wanna-be rapper who spoke to some tabloid on her behalf. So, for the purposes of this blog, let’s call her Jodi EmbARIASsed, just for today. You’ve probably read the list by now.
We have food and OTC medicines to ponder, and we will! What’s the first thing you think of when you read sardines in oil, clams, pistachios, salmon, green chilis, breaded fishsticks, and beans? Can we call it “The Gas Menu”? Specifically, I’m thinking of items that will do an encore performance — digestively speaking. I’m thinking of foods that will require the host to summon the Beano Special Forces to engage the Flatulence Troops. Luckily, Arias does have access to Beano. The old men who put money into her prison account can go to sleep knowing that they have helped to eradicate a level of intestinal gas that is so offensive, so foul, and so hideous that even the producer of that gas is screaming for relief. Before we leave her oft-photographed nether regions, it’s worth noting that on her anniversary, Arias is suffering from the annoyance of hemorrhoids.
Ouch. I think they hurt, but having no personal experience with them, I can only guess that if she’s trading in three or four Hershey Bars for a box of medicated pads, the irritation must be problematic. Beyond that, her feet probably smell. How do I know this? Well, nobody buys Tinactin unless their feet are a fungal battleground. The score? Feet, 5 points. Fungus, 50 points. Thank goodness the commissary also sells “Deluxe” tube socks. What’s deluxe about tube sock? Can you wear them on the red carpet (or for a prison interview?)? Are they fur lined? Do they include a percentage of cashmere? Maybe deluxe, in the prison system, simply means they aren’t passed from inmate to inmate.
Despite the fact that Arias has the ability to smell like an Irish spring experiencing an icy blast, she’s having some issues with adult acne, dandruff, inopportune body hair, and that Herpes thing on her lip. Greasy here, dry there, hairy here, blistering there…what’s a woman to do?
Well, if you’re in Perryville Prison, you can buy dandruff shampoo, acne cream, a rotary razor, and Chapstick. After her necessities are taken care of, she’s buying colored pencils, envelopes, a few greeting cards, and what looks like a television (the 13″ LCD purchase). Oh, those anti-shank toothbrushes? Another famous person (by reality show standards) claimed, after her recent prison stint, that anti-shank toothbrushes are used for purposes other than a woman’s oral hygiene needs. I won’t tell you what she claims they are used for, but take an educated guess. Arias has purchased several over the past few months. Toothpaste? Nope. So what is Miss “That’s so degrading. I like it”, doing with all of those toothbrushes?
Happy Anniversary, 281129. No dinner. No speeches. No cards. No flowers. No candy. Nothing but whatever the Lumley Unit allows you to do on an average Wednesday night in prison. Your life sounds about as interesting as your shopping list. Oh, here’s to hoping that any donations to your “book drive” are the same westerns you allegedly hate. Considering the fact that you are a premeditated murderer, perhaps you don’t deserve books that are insightful or motivating (with the exception of the books written about the murder of Travis Alexander). And for what it”s worth, your embarrassment makes us feel better. I wonder how embarrassed the Alexander siblings were when they were forced to look at or listen to all of the things their murdered brother wished (and believed) would remain private.
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So, L. Kirk Nurmi wrote a book (with the promise of two more volumes to come). Like many others (yours truly included), he secured his ticket on the Arias Express. With his self-published book, “Trapped with Ms. Arias”, his sophomore effort (following his first book, “More Thinner There”, a weight loss how-to booklet), Nurmi takes us behind the scenes and gives us a seat at the Estrella Jail’s attorney/inmate meeting room.
Full disclosure dictates that I admit that I haven’t read Nurmi’s book. I won’t spend a dime on anything that will benefit L. Kirk Nurmi. In my mind, he’s collected his thirty pieces of silver over and over again (yes, when you run with your guilty client’s need to paint her already destroyed victim as a sexual deviant with whom we are better off without, you’ve wandered into Judas Iscariot territory). I’ve read the section of the book that Nurmi offers for free on Amazon, and I’ve read plenty of excerpts online. I’ve read the reviews of his book, and I’ve seen him interviewed by numerous television hosts as he continues on his publicity (pity) tour.
Let’s put it this way — I get it. What Nurmi wants is absolution. He may deny that. He may claim he’s simply educating the public as to the burdens defense attorneys carry as they protect their client’s constitutional right to a fair trial. I’m not buying it. He can wrap his defense tactics in the constitution from now until the day prison employees take Arias out of Perryville in a pine box, but that will never change the fact that he knew who and what he was dealing with, and he knew that his client was lying to him. He knew, he claims, very early on, what this case would become in terms of public interest. He knew he was going to be watched and scrutinized, but still, he went with a defense that absolutely mutilated the already mutilated victim — Travis Alexander. Does the constitution say he has to lie for his client?
Did Kirk Nurmi believe that his client was going to lie on the stand? He must have — either that or a man who went to law school and passed the bar is not as smart as the rest of the country. Her story — the relevant aspects — were thoroughly dis-proven. What’s a defense attorney to do when they realize that their client is about to take the stand and commit perjury? Well, he needs to do everything he can to convince his client to tell the truth or not testify. That wasn’t going to work with Jodi Arias — she was getting on the stand. He could have submitted a motion to withdraw from the case. He did that — multiple times. The judge would have wanted to know why the attorney wished to withdraw, but divulging his client’s plans could violate the attorney-client privilege. However, without a good reason, the judge is likely to deny the attorney’s request. There’s no doubt Nurmi was in a tough spot, but he did have one more option. When those motions were denied, he could have allowed Arias to testify in a narrative form, not asking questions and thereby not participating in her perjury.
Before we feel too sorry for Nurmi, let’s remember his early efforts to withdraw from the case. He claims he wanted to go into private practice, and the meager salary he was receiving from the Public Defender’s office was complicating those plans. He told Arias he wanted to withdraw from the case. She wrote a letter to the judge begging for the court to force Nurmi to continue representing her. She even referred to a possible solution to Nurmi’s financial issues. Lo and behold, Nurmi was offered a pay raise — $225 an hour to continue to represent Arias. How often does this happen in the life of a Public Defender? Is this common? I doubt it. So, put your Kleenex away. Nurmi got his 30 pieces of silver (and the public did notice.)
It was Kirk Nurmi, the defense attorney who was trapped with Ms. Arias, who introduced the word “ass” in a court of law. This was another transparent assault on the ghost of Travis Alexander. Nurmi could have used the word “butt”, but “ass” has a rougher edge, and throughout the entire trial, Nurmi was on a mission to roughen up the image of Travis Alexander. We cannot forget that as we listen to Nurmi lamenting the fact that he had to defend Jodi Arias. He’s right; he did have to defend Jodi Arias. What he didn’t have to do — what he had no right (legally or ethically) to do — was to assault and slander her butchered victim. That wasn’t in his job description.
Now, let’s look at the introduction to “Trapped with Ms. Arias“. Let’s compare what he says now with what he said in Judge Stephens’ courtroom. In his introduction, Nurmi writes (and despite the fact that he claims three individuals edited the book, I’m not correcting his errors), “In my mind, the only sane way to view this case is that it was a tragedy for many reasons. Primary amongst those reasons is that a beloved young man is dead and the woman he loved is now spending her life in prison and it didn’t have to be this way.”
A beloved young man? The woman he loved? Is that the way Nurmi really feels about Travis Alexander? Is that the way Travis Alexander really felt about Jodi Arias? May I remind you of how he spoke about this “beloved young man” when he was speaking on the record? May I refer to the trial? Arias is on the stand and she and Nurmi are discussing Travis’ propensity for “ass grabbing”. Referring to a convention in Oklahoma City, she says: “My understanding was that he grabbed it because there was a guy named Mark standing by, and Mark had expressed an interest in me two months earlier.” Enter Nurmi, who by now seems to be suffering from Stockholm Syndrome (remember, he’s trapped with Ms. Arias). He illuminates the evil core of the late Travis Alexander by summarizing thusly: “So, the point he was proving was that you belonged to him?” His captor, the manipulative Jodi Arias, replied, “Just that he was claiming me. It was usually the only time he claimed me in public, when there was another guy around or something.”
The tortured (but obligated) Nurmi was just doing his job when he sarcastically pondered aloud, “I guess you weren’t wearing your T-Shirt, huh?” He swaggered around and sarcastically whined, “I guess you weren’t wearing the T-Shirt that has Travis Alexander apostropheee (he raised his voice on the “EEE” and waved his hand in the air) S on it, right? You probably weren’t wearing the shorts that said Travis’s with an apostrophe…oh, excuse me, an exclamation point.” He continued, “There’s no other way to claim you as his property but to grab your ass, right?”
Beloved young man? Yeah, sure.
Again, let’s look at a passage from Nurmi’s introduction. He writes, “Now you might be wondering: why do I describe to whom I was trapped as Ms. Arias instead of ‘Jodi’ or ‘Jodi Arias’ or any other name? The reason is simple. More than being called P458434 her jail booking number, or ‘281129,’ her Arizona Department of Corrections booking number, Jodi Ann Arias, hates to be referred to as Ms. Arias. I know this because once she started complaining about me to the court and others I took the high road and tried to be as professional as possible by calling her Ms. Arias. In response, she would scream at me for calling her by her formal name. Behind those screams was the threat I discuss in this book, her threat that she would ruin my career if I did not follow her commands. I might also point out, so as to prevent any confusion: I do not call Mr. Alexander, Mr. Alexander as an expression of disdain, but instead out of respect because I feel it would be disrespectful of me to simply call him Travis.” Really? He basically called him a domestic abuser, a hypocrite, a porn addict, and a pedophilein court. I think the Alexander siblings could have lived with their deceased brother being called simply “Travis”, but the names Nurmi put on “Mr. Alexander” for eight days nearly killed them. As far as Ms. Arias is concerned, how could she destroy his career? Was she going to bad mouth him to the Estrella inmates? As far as I know, many of those inmates are indigent; they don’t get to chose an attorney (just as Arias couldn’t chose an attorney). They get a public defender. If it’s Nurmi, it’s Nurmi. If it’s someone else, it’s someone else.
Now that we’ve gotten a taste of what Nurmi considers respect (using Mr. and Ms. in front of a last name), let’s look at how he respected Mr. Alexander when the subject was sex. Hes adopted a scorched earth strategy, and this is how he paints Travis Alexander as a pervert who is addicted to fetishistic sex. He even hints at Travis having sex with Arias without her consent.
The following are his words, not mine:
“Did you consider the fact that he was having sex with you when you didn’t want him to?…Did you want him to penetrate your vagina with his penis while you were sleeping?”…Did you give thought to the idea that this man was having sex with you while you not conscious?”
“The day after you broke up, was it your hope, did you say, ‘I hope Travis calls and talks dirty to me?'”
“Now,we’ve heard from you that Mr. Alexander had intercourse with you while you were asleep, and now performed oral sex on you while you were asleep and just waking up…did you wake up with Mr. Alexander performing any other sex acts on you?”
“After you didn’t — were not able– to obtain the cock ring, you were then, it sounds, you were instructed to then go and get Tootsie Pops and Pop Rocks? And at that time, what was your understanding of the purpose of obtaining these items?”
“What do you mean ‘inside of you’?”
“There was a lot of talk on this tape about photo shoots and pornography and the porn star thing and pictures of you with semen on your face making quote/unquote legitimate porn. Based on those, it brings up the question, did you and Travis ever videotape yourselves while having sex?” Arias answered in the affirmative. Nurmi continued with, “And at whose desire was that to take place?” She answered, “At his”.
“Well, were they more similar to the pictures of you laying on the bed, or were they more similar to the pictures where he seemingly has the camera a few inches from your vagina?”
“So, this trip to Ehrenberg includes oral sex, grinding, grabbing your buttocks at a truck stop, and proselytizing about the book of Mormon (his voice raises an octave as gets louder at this point), AND A MOVIE, RIGHT?” And how’s this for respect? Hey, at least he called him “Mr. Alexander”.
“On this tape, Mr. Alexander talks about how (he’s yelling now) HE WANTS TO ZIP TIE YOU TO A TREE AND PUT IT IN YOUR ASS, DEEP. REMEMBER THAT? THERE’S NO MISTAKIN’ WHAT WE’RE TALKIN’ ABOUT HERE, RIGHT?”
“He also, in this message, says you are the ultimate slut in bed. What does that mean to you?”
“He says he wants to send one down your throat and another on your face. What does that mean to you?”
“Were you gonna ask him to tie you to a tree? Were you gonna ask him to ejaculate down your throat and on your face?
“Did you want him to be designed for your most vile and lustful pleasures?”
“Was it your ultimate goal in life to Mr. Alexander’s whore?”
“He says, ‘A day hasn’t gone by that I haven’t dreamt about driving my shaft long and hard into you.'”
“But how ’bout feeling like you’ve been raped, but you enjoyed every delightful moment of it. Did you wanna feel like you were raped?”
“To be accurate here, he also says, ‘You’ll rejoice in being a whore whose soul purpose in life is to have animalistic sex with me, and to please me in any way I desire.’ Was it your ultimate goal in life to be Mr. Alexander’s whore?” “So, did you remove all of your clothing and take a picture of your buttocks for Mr. Alexander?” “So, your wrists are bound, and he performs oral sex on you. Do any other sexual acts take place while you’re tied to this bed?”
Now that Nurmi has finished his Fifty Shade of Travis narrative, he’s going to move onto Mr. Alexander: Domestic Abuser.
Remember these exchanges in the courtroom? “So, he hits you in the face, and if I heard you right, in the car later when he’s at home, he tells you he loves you?” “Did this begin…did this shaking…did that begin before or after the beatings began?…Did this begin before he slapped you in the face — or the cheek?…Before he threw you down and choked you? Before he broke your finger and kicked you in the ribs?…Before he pushed you down in the room and wouldn’t let ya leave, and insulted your family?” “…You realized, you told us, you were one of them, and if I understood you correctly, that was a reference to a battered woman…one of those women that don’t call the police when their boyfriend abuses them, right?” DID YA WANT MR. ALEXANDER TO BE ANGRY WITH YOU (he’s yelling)?…Because ya’d start shaking if he did, wouldn’t you? When he swore at you?…When he called you a whore?…A slut? That made you shake. You were scared. right?…Did you like it when he called you a three hole wonder?”
But hey kids! It isn’t just Mr. Alexander who beat Ms. Arias. According to Ms. Arias, her parents were also abusers. Everyone sit in a circle for story hour with Mr. Nurmi as he takes her back to her broken childhood: “We talked a little bit about your dad during high school, your mom with the wooden spoon — did they continue in high school as well?” “When you say he hit you across the face, did he punch you?…Do you recall, did you bleed?…Did you bruise?…Did it hurt?…Just to clarify, your dad’s a pretty big guy, right?…You said he used to bench press 500 and something pounds.” “To your knowledge, was your mom aware — I know you mentioned the one incident where your mom was present — was your mom aware of your dad beating you?” “Was there a — any particular physical incident of abuse that motivated you to leave your parents’ home?” Now Mr. Alexander, sexual deviant and domestic abuser, is about to be labeled a pedophile. Want “proof?” Here it is: “Did something happen in January, 2008 that changed your relationship with Mr. Alexander?…Before we get into the particulars, can you remember where it occurred?…What did you see on the 21st, or late January, 2008, or I should say this — what happened on the 21st of January, 2008, that changed the course of your relationship with Travis?” “Again, Jodi, let me address the question, and perhpas it’s difficult, but why would it be. From what you’ve told us, you saw him masturbating to the image of a child — why would it have been a problem for you, in other words, why couldn’t you imagine not having anymore contact with him at that point in time?” “Can you guess how old for us the little boy was?…Did you recognize the little boy…Was the little boy dressed?” “So, I’m sorry…you were driving away from his home. How did you feel about what you saw?…Did you speak, did Travis ever make other attempts to call you after you saw what you saw?” “After that conversation, did you come away with the understanding that Mr. Alexander had a sexual interest in children? Did you come away with the the understanding that it was boys and girls, or was it just one or the other?…Did you believe him to have an interest in young boys? Did you believe him to have an interest in your girls?…Did you think you could help him?” “Now we’re talking about the boys’ underwear and anal sex. Is this the boy’s underwear that you received back on Valentine’s Day?…Did he explain to you why he wanted you to wear this underwear and why he wanted to have anal sex with you while you were wearing this underwear?…Let me ask you this — how did you feel about having anal sex with Travis while you were wearing this boys’ Spiderman underwear? “The reason being, if I understand it correctly, he liked pretending that you were a young boy.” “Wah, wah, wait…was there a certain wardrobe that was required for this school girl outfit?” “Referring to this picture, it appears that, uh, there is no pubic hair in this picture. Why?…So. you removed it at his request?” “What was your understanding of why he liked your hair in braids?” After eight days on the stand, Nurmi finally got to the point. Here is the only testimony, elicited by Nurmi, that was relevant to this case. This refers to the murder of Travis Alexander: “Did you consider, at that time, did you consider escape and running away as a viable option when he was attacking you?” “But Jodi, you have to ask, he throws you down on the floor, says fuckin’ kill you bitch, and you fear for your life. Why… doesn’t that kind of conduct kinda throw that promise out the window? As we stand here today, have you forgiven yourself for not trying another option?” “Well, let me ask you this: Do you remember stabbing Travis Alexander?…Do you remember…dragging him across the floor?…Do you remember placing him in the shower?” “Why do you still feel, given what happened on June 4th, why do you believe now, that you realistically even had other options, once it started?” “And based on what you told us before, you had a pretty good idea that Travis was dead, is that right?” “Jodi, I’ll ask my question again…as we stand here today, have you forgiven yourself for not finding another way out of this situation you found yourself in on June 4th?” “And those thoughts were with you after you learned, or got confirmation from others that he was deceased?” “Once you had permission to openly grieve, did you tell your family what happened?” “At this point in time, was Travis’ reputation more important to you than your own future?” This is why the majority of the public will never understand L. Kirk Nurmi or his book — or more accurately, books.
Yes, he had a job to do, but that job did not require him to slaughter a dead man. Countless defense attorneys have gone on the record saying that slandering the victim is a bad idea. L. Kirk Nurmi talks about the constitution. He talks about how difficult his job is. He talks about the “win”. The win is keeping a murderer from a lethal injection. If doing that means pulling apart the consensual sex life of a victim and his murderer, then Nurmi will go there. If doing that means painting the dead victim as a domestic abuser, then Nurmi will go there. If doing that means alleging that the corpse left to decay — a corpse that used to be a popular, but flawed individual — then Nurmi will go there.
I have no sympathy for him. He didn’t have to do what he did. He spent very little time discussing the murder, but we did get a bird’s eye view of Jodi Arias’ entire life (including old boyfriends, tales of break-ups and make-ups, her education, her artistic ambitions, her religious and philosophical dabbling, and her road trips). The murder? It was a foot note in her testimony — at least that’s the way it was presented. Nurmi abused the jury. He tortured them with his non-linear , confusing defense that seemed to go on forever.
He now finds it necessary to write three books about the trial — three books about himself. The beginning of his first book includes a section called, “Who is Nurmi?”. By contrast, I considered the post trial behavior of Juan Martinez, the prosecutor and real winner in this case. He could have gone on a victory tour. He could have courted the media. What did he do? He consented to one interview after the trial concluded. In that interview, he wouldn’t even disclose what his hobbies were. When it comes to Martinez, we may never know who he is beyond his public persona.
That’s the way it should be, don’t you think? Let me know what it is you all think. I’m interested if I am alone here.
When we last left the courtroom, Juan Martinez was in the early stages of unwrapping the real Jodi Arias. He wasn’t allowing her to get away with her nonsensical story about rummaging around Travis Alexander’s garage to find her Social Security card late one August evening in 2007. Martinez probably rolled his eyes when he heard Arias recount the orders given to her by General PF Chang. General Chang, commander of a Chinese restaurant chain, demanded that Arias report to work with more than just her Social Security number; she needed, she claimed, the actual card issued by the federal government. Remember, this is General PF Chang, conqueror of American-approved Beef Lo Mein, Egg Drop Soup, and Pork Fried Rice — not General Sun Tzu, the oft quoted philosopher, strategist, and author of “The Art of War”. We’re talking about Americanized Chinese food and soy sauce. Why did they need to see her actual Social Security card? Martinez gave the issue as much attention as it deserved — none.
Juan Martinez knew that Jodi Arias was addicted to Travis Alexander. She wanted an LDS marriage, her name added to the title on his house, and to bear his offspring (whether she believed she would give birth to their spirit babies or just a bunch of kids of the carnal variety. She was certain that giving birth to Travis’ children would cement her place in his life). Travis was still a better bet than the wandering and lost Count Bobby Juarez, the tent-dweller named Matt McCartney, or the vodka drinking, cigarette smoking, too encumbered, co-foreclosure partner named grandpa/Darryl Brewer.
She was at Travis’ home that night to spy on him, not to find a Social Security card (something most people keep in their wallets). With Martinez’ pointed and direct questions, the jury knew exactly what he was implying. He wanted them to know that truth about Jodi Arias. He wanted them to know that she viewed Travis as her possession. I’m assuming Arias did her nightly cruise by Travis’ home (not that it’s proven, but in my head, it’s completely plausible) and she saw a car she didn’t recognize in his driveway. Seething with jealousy, Arias made up an excuse to use at her trial that was on par with something a wayward adolescent would concoct if they were busted. She needed to plant herself on the other side of those glass sliding doors because, short of entering his house and prowling around in secret (which I’m certain she was willing to do), a view through those glass doors might tell her everything she needed to know.
She looks foolish as she argues with Juan Martinez about what constitutes a light source (a light bulb or a television). She looks delusional as she talks about her right to question Travis as to whom he was or was not dating (because he was, in her words, “courting her back”). She looked like a practiced grifter as she explained that she wasn’t working because the restaurant season is slow in August, but it never entered her mind to look for any other line of work. She looked like a squatter when she explained that she wasn’t paying rent to Rachel, her roommate — or to anyone else. As I said, Juan Martinez has just begun to unwrap the real Jodi Arias. By the time he’s done with her, it won’t matter how many pony tails and junior department blouses she wears on the witness stand; she will be revealed for the creature that is hiding behind those over-sized glasses.
After clearly establishing that Arias had a living situation we’d all love to have — rent free — Martinez continues by saying, “So you could have left that whole situation alone (meaning the creeper/peeper questions she confronted Travis with the next day), but you decided to confront him anyway, right?” Arias answers, “Of course”. Martinez continues, “And the reason you did it is because you were jealous, right?” He knows she won’t admit to jealously this early into cross, but this is for the jury, not the defendant. She answers, “No (with a deliberately suppressed grin and a downward glance that is supposed to say, “If you only knew, stupid jury”). Martinez ignores her answers and plows ahead. He asks, “You did talk to him about this issue, correct?” She answers, “Yes.” Martinez replies, “And he got upset with you, right?” Arias, still wearing a subdued grin, gives a clipped, “No.” Martinez continues, “He didn’t get upset with you and scream and run upstairs? Isn’t that what you told us yesterday?” Still wearing the face of a woman who is waiting for the right moment to verbally decimate her enemy, Arias answers, “Yes, he did.”
Martinez, his hands moving up and down like two neighboring elevators, says, “So, ma’am, to go back to this issue involving text messages. One of the things that you told us was there was a text message that was sent by somebody by the name of Steve — Steve Carroll, right?” She answers, “Yes”. Martinez barely takes a breath as he continues, “And it was a two part text message, right?” Arias moves her eyes to the right and says, “E-yes”. Martinez continues, “And this two part text message ended up going to Mr. Alexander, right?” While Martinez was asking her this question, Arias seized the opportunity to pour herself a plastic cup of water. As usual, she uses her left hand to lift the cup to her lips. This is the way she always drinks when she’s on the stand, and it always looks unnatural and uncomfortable. However, it serves a purpose; she bends her wrist so that her fingers are wrapped around the front and right side of the cup. This is so that the jury can see her gimped finger, the one Travis allegedly broke in a fit of rage. She barely has time to swallow the water before she answers Martinez’ question as to whether the two-part text message ended up going to Travis Alexander. She answers, “Yes”. How casual. How “I’m on a 15 minute break from work, so could you hurry this up, please?” she sounds. Does this woman not understand that she isn’t applying for a job or a loan? Does she not realize that every question this seasoned prosecutor is presenting to her is important? A drink of water? It can’t wait? The death penalty is on the table.
Martinez continues, “And that he got upset about it, right?” Arias responds, as though Travis Alexander is the defendant in this trial, “Very…yes.” Martinez replies, “And, after he got upset about it, one of the things he wanted was to see the second part of this text message, right?” She answers, “Yes.” Martinez goes on, “And so you lied to him at that point, right?” Arias, with that same smug look on her face, answers, “No.” Sure, Arias doesn’t lie. Martinez digs deeper and says, “Well, you fabricated a second text message, didn’t you?” Arias replies, “After that point, yes.” Arias does not believe fabricating equals lying. She looks likes she’s bursting at the seams to explain her justification for what we call lying (and she calls truth).
Martinez is as incredulous as I am. He asks, “Do you…are you telling me that fabricating a text message is not a lie?” She answers, “No, I’m not saying that.” Umm, unless I don’t speak English as a first language, that’s exactly what she just said. Martinez responds, “So, you did lie to him — Mr. Alexander — right?”
Arias doesn’t answer quickly enough to thwart the impact of the words coming from the mouth of Juan Martinez. He asked a rhetorical question, and it was one to which he’d already provided the answer. He says, “We’re applying a different standard here then, right?” Kirk Nurmi earns his $250/hour by objecting. Nurmi thinks the question is argumentative, and Judge Stephen’s ruling — sustained — tells the jury, the gallery, Arias, Nurmi, and Martinez that she agrees with the biggest earning public defender in Arizona. No matter. Martinez is on a roll, and he continues, “With regard to this — issue of how you feel — isn’t that the same way you felt when you were peeping into his window in August of 2007? Isn’t that the same kind of feeling that you were having?” Although the question is as clear and vibrant as a top rated diamond, Arias buys herself some time by asking, “The same as what?” Martinez answers immediately, “As the one involving Steve Carroll.” Arias, looking like she’s having a conversation with someone speaking broken English, furrows her brow, looks as confused as possible, and answers, “I don’t know.”
Martinez, like a dog with a bone, answers, “You were mad at Mr. Alexander both times, weren’t you?” Arias answers, “I wasn’t mad at Alexander.” Oh, so now Travis, her soul mate, her guardian angel who introduced her the gospel and baptized her into the faith, the man with whom she baked cookies and intended to marry, is just “Alexander”? That said more than all of her BS answers this morning. Martinez replies, palms outstretched, “You weren’t mad at him, but you were upset with him, right?” Arias, willing to drag this out and muddy the waters, says, “At what time?” Martinez answers, “Either time.” Arias raises her left hand and says, “Steve Carroll…no.” Then she takes that left hand, and with a vertical karate chop, she says, “The girl from Phoenix, yes.”
Martinez sums it up by saying, “And so, it just seems like it’s okay for you to lie to him about a guy, but when it comes to him being with some other girl, you decide to confront him, right?” With an expression on her face that says, “What don’t you understand, Martinez?”, Arias slightly shrugs her shoulders and says, “Yes.” Martinez is racking up a lot of points here, and Arias doesn’t even know it. He goes on, “And one of the things you told us yesterday was that you were monogamous with Mr. Alexander, right?” Arias decides to throw a monkey wrench into the questioning by answering, “Sexually monogamous, yes.” Martinez asks, “Ma’am, you told us you were monogamous, and that’s what monogamous means — sexually monogamous.” Arias pauses, but breaks the pause before it becomes uncomfortable. She replies, “I think it means more than that, sometimes.” Please, somebody save us from having to hear the killer’s version of monogamy.
Martinez doesn’t give a shit about Arias’ definition of monogamy — he cares about the jury’s definition of monogamy. He’s made his point. He’s willing to go with the Webster’s definition. He says, “Well, in this case, monogamous means sexually monogamous, doesn’t it?” Nurmi breaks in with some stupid objection. It isn’t worth noting.
Let the game playing begin. Martinez presses the issue and asks “When you say monogamous, it means sexually, doesn’t it?” Arias responds with a ridiculous, “Which time?” Martinez continues, “The time that we’re talking about, right now. The time that involved Mr. Alexander.” Determined not to answer the question that will bust her, Arias skates around the question by saying, “Our relationship evolved…” Martinez smacks back with, “I’m not asking about when it evolved — at the end, right when you killed him — you indicate that you were monogamous with him, right?” Ooooh, that “killed him” phrase knocked her off of her podium. She answered immediately, “Yes.” He continues, “And at that time, you then left ‘the killing scene’ if you will, and went to Utah, right?”
We’ll continue with Utah the next time, but for now, let’s look at what Arias said about that night in August, 2007 — the night she creeper peeped into Travis’ home. Beyond that, let’s look at happy-go-lucky Jodi Arias as she walks into Travis’ home the day after her creeper/peeper expedition. Let’s take a look at Arias, armed to the teeth was proof, as she positioned her well used butt onto Travis’ washing machine while he was atop a ladder painting his laundry room. Remember, he’s gone, forever silenced. All we have is the story of the woman who slaughtered a man three times over and left him to melt down his own shower drain.
Remember, this was Arias’ play-by-play of the day in which she confronted Travis with her first hand info as he was painting his laundry room, and she shared it with this jury just 24 hours ago: “So, as I was walking around the house, and the blinds to the living room were opened, and I could see this blue glow coming out of the window from the TV, and I was walking toward the glass, and I glanced in, and I noticed two people making out on the couch, so I stopped for a second because I thought that was awkward, and I assumed it was one of his roommates, so I thought, how would I…how would I handle that? You know, I thought, maybe I’ll just walk in real quick and say sorry, cause I would have to walk past them to get to the garage… they were on the couch. So, I decided that I would do that, and as I was, as I was, umm, going towards the glass, she stood up and she re-hooked her bra, and the guy stood up wiping his mouth, and I saw that it was Travis. So, we weren’t together at this point, and I knew that there were other people that he was seeing, or that maybe I was seeing… but it kinda still hurt, so I ran. I didn’t go to… I didn’t go for the Social Security card. I just left and I went home, and it was too late to call anybody really, so I just waited for the next day to call my sister, my little sister, but she wasn’t home. She lived with my parents at that time, and my dad answered, and I told him what happened because he was somebody to talk to. I didn’t confide in him often, but he was asking me why I was crying, and so I just told him what happened, umm, and at that point, I decided, I’m just gonna go over there now and ask him if he’s dating someone.”
Oh, so it “still kinda hurt” to see what she saw when she was spying on Travis? That level of emotional disturbance might warrant a muttered, “Damn, I wish I hadn’t seen that, and I wish I still didn’t care as much as I do about what I saw. This sucks”, but to call her very troubled and substance addicted little sister — someone who was probably 16 at the time, meant that Arias was feeling something far more intense than “it still kinda hurt”. Arias calls home the next day, and she was willing to speak to anyone — even her father (the abuser) — and the abuser asked her immediately why she was crying. That tells me that she didn’t build up to crying during the conversation — she started out crying. In fact, she’d probably spent the entire night in some kind of sleepless emotional turmoil that alternated between anger, hopelessness, sadness, and revenge. There’s a lot more pain being expressed than “it still kinda hurt”.
Food for thought — Arias just told the prosecutor that she had the right to demand an explanation as to what she saw while peeping because Travis was “trying to court her back.”
So, which is it? Did she confront him about the woman on the couch because Travis was “courting her back”, or did she confront him about the woman on the couch because they weren’t together anymore and the knowledge that he was definitely seeing other people hurt her so badly that she couldn’t even control her emotions while talking to her father the next day? It cannot be both.
Under direct examination and the careful handling of Kirk Nurmi, Arias was questioned as to her motive for going back to Travis’ house the next day to discuss what she had seen the night before. This was her answer when the interrogator was being paid to have her acquitted. Back then, she said, “…at that point, I decided, I’m just gonna go over there now and ask him if he’s dating someone. That way I can move on, or something.” Or something? Gee, I wonder what she meant by that. Actually, that’s not true. We all know what she meant by “or something”, and the terrible tragedy of Arias’ choice to opt for “or something” has permanently silenced a good man in the prime of his life. Arias’ decision to go with “or something” means that his nieces and nephews will get to know Uncle Travis — forever almost 32 years old — by watching videotapes and looking at photographs of him.
Did she need a telegram to tell her that he’d moved on? Wasn’t the visual enough for her? Seriously, for someone who prides herself on her massive intellect, she should really think these answers through before giving life to them and allowing them to become memorialized in the trial transcripts. Whether or not Travis was dating the woman Arias saw him horizontally positioned with the night before, he was certainly having an intimate relationship — or maybe a one, two, or three night stand with the woman who was re-hooking her bra in his living room. Big deal. Who, including the most righteous and religious among us, hasn’t, at least once, grasped for forbidden fruit of the carnal variety? How many of those people have paid for that choice with their lives? It was obvious that Travis was sowing his wild oats, and he was no longer that interested in sowing them with Arias.
When Martinez asks Arias the same question under cross (why she felt she had the right to be debriefed on his intimate behavior the night before), there is no mention of knowing that Travis was dating other people. There was also no mention of “moving on.” However, there was, according to the murderess, mention of Travis “courting her back”, and that, she tells the prosecutor, is what gave her the right to interrogate an ex-boyfriend — the one she proudly declares (for the record) she dumped.
Following that line of questioning, Martinez directly asks Arias if Travis got upset with her for showing up at his house the next day to ask him about his dating life. She admits that he did get upset and he ran upstairs, but she steadfastly denies Martinez’ assertion that Travis was upset with her. He was just upset. Remember, he was happily painting hi laundry room when she arrived, but by the time she left, he was banging his body parts into walls…but hey, he wasn’t upset with her or anything.
Well, let’s see how her answer to Kirk Nurmi, her public defender, differs from from her assertion to the prosecutor that Travis was upset, but not with her. Here is her account of the episode — as delivered to Kirk Nurmi. She said, “So, I went over to his house, and we were, he was in the laundry room stenciling stripes down the walls, getting ready to paint them, and I hopped up on the washing machine and sat there, and he came down on the ladder, and he gave me a kiss and… mmm… I said… I just said it flat out… I said, ‘If you’re dating someone, it’s okay, you can tell me.’ And I told him, based on what he had said about Deanna in the past, I said, “I won’t freak out the way Deanna does,’ because he had said that about her, and he just thought that was a strange question, and he said, ‘Why are you asking me…?” Yeah. He just let out a real frustrated scream (A scream? Really?), and he walked out of the laundry room and pounded the wall with his fist really hard… I mean, not the wall, but the door frame of the laundry room, and he went upstairs, and I just sat there kind of stunned. I’d only seen his anger a few times at that point, and I heard this thud, this banging, like rhythmic, like over and over and over, like just, it was dull, like something was hitting something over and over and over. So I jumped off the washing machine to see what it was – he was the only one home – so I went upstairs, I went into the bedroom, and it was getting louder as I got toward the bedroom – and I turned to look down the hallway, and he’s banging his head repeatedly on the linen door closet, and I, it was awful to watch him do that, and I walked up to him, sort of, tentatively, because he looked… unstable (she made an unstable facial expression to prove her point)… and he was mumbling something under his breath, and he kept saying…”
At this point, Nurmi asked his client, Jodi Airas, if she had to run away from Travis – the man she now claims was neither angry or upset with her. She answered, “Umm, I finally said his name to get his attention, and he screamed ‘What?’ really loud, and he spun and looked at me like a mad man, and it freaked me out, so I ran down the hall thinking I would just get out of the bedroom, but he caught me right as I reached the threshold of the bedroom, right as I reached the carpet, he caught my wrist, and he pulled me back, and I was freaking out, and then he calmed down, and he explained to me that she was just a girl that he met in Phoenix, and they probably wouldn’t see each other again”.
Hmmm? What’s missing here? Could it be Arias shoving it in his face that she was peering through the glass doors the night before? Let’s look at her story to see if it makes any sense. There’s Travis. He, a man in his thirties, enjoyed a mutually consensual intimate encounter the night before, and that encounter was with a normal woman, not a disturbed woman like Jodi Arias. He felt good the next day, and in his mind, I think he felt like life was returning to a normal groove that he recognized. He was not depressed, and he had not taken to his room to pine away for Jodi Arias. Instead, he got up and got busy improving his beloved home. He’d gotten out his ladder, taped up the walls, poured his paint into a tray, got his brushes and rollers ready, and he had the ambition and energy to begin painting his laundry room. Now, according to Arias, she walked in the door and popped up on the washing machine. Remember, there’s no dialogue that mentions him answering the door. I believe she just walked in and made herself at home. So, as she continues to paint a picture that’s supposed to convince the jury that she and Travis were so close that walking in without knocking was an established pattern of behavior, she goes on to say that Travis descended his ladder (and if he was on the ladder, he certainly didn’t answer the door) and kissed her. I don’t believe that — not for a second. I think he stayed exactly where he was — on his ladder doing his painting. I think Arias just appeared and hopped on top of his washing machine. She claims she just blurted it out — was he dating anyone, and if he was, it was okay with her. She wasn’t going to freak out the way Deanna did. Arias uses every possible opportunity to paint Deanna as Jodi Arias; unstable, jealous, overly emotional, intrusive, and angry about the one who got away (Travis). In true borderline form, she allows herself to relish the high she gets from trying to discredit a Mormon school teacher and devout woman in front of the television cameras. She doesn’t think about how her Deanna rants prove that she is the one with the jealousy issues. All she cares about is her bully pulpit, and she uses it to discredit a woman that Travis honestly loved.
Now here’s what she failed to say to Nurmi: She probably told Travis that she saw what was going on the night before because she was there, under cover of darkness, and she watched him as he wiped his mouth and the mystery woman put her bra back on. That’s what she was leaving out, and that’s what caused Travis to react in such a way that Arias will now paint him as a man with an anger problem out of control. He’s screaming, he’s pounding on the wall, he heads to his bedroom (to escape from her), and then starts banging his head against the wall. Who wouldn’t? Imagine the day after you engaged in an intimate encounter. You’re feeling good about it — thinking about the possibilities, and then suddenly, some ex-whoever from the past shows up in your laundry room to tell you that he/she was watching your private encounter. Pretty awful, right?
And then again, maybe Travis ignored her BS and continued to paint without running away and pounding on door frames and linen closet doors. We’ll never know.
Arias claims she followed the raging bull, but remember, he’s not upset with her (so she says). She calls his name to break the spell of rage that has seized his mind and body, and suddenly he yells, “WHAT?”. She’s approaching tentatively (because he’s not upset with her or anything) and when he spins around, he looks like a mad man. She runs (because he’s not upset with her or anything), but he grabs her wrist and pulls her back. He pulls it together long enough to promise that he’ll never see Miss Phoenix Late Night ever again. Does that have the ring of truth to it, or do you believe Arias left out anything that had to do with her behavior that day?
Just remember, Travis, according to his killer, wasn’t mad or upset at Arias — at all. He was just mad at himself.
Back to court. Martinez has gotten Arias to admit that she has a double standard in terms of her own behavior and that of Travis. She’s affirmed that she lied to Travis about men she was dating, but she expected a higher level of honesty when it came Travis’ disclosures about his dating life. Martinez only got that out of her because he used words like “killed him” in the question. She never wants to belabor that point, so she just agrees when he injects those words into his questions. When the word “killed” is in the question, she wants to move along as quickly as possible.
Martinez continues, “And at that time, you left… the… killing scene, if you will, and you went out to Utah, right?” She meekly answers, “Yes”. She then drops her head and closes her eyes. She maintains this traumatic posture as Martinez asks, “And when you went out to Utah, ma’am, you ended up with somebody by the name of Ryan Burns, right?” Arias has now pried her eyes open. She looks at the jury and says, “Yes”. Martinez continues, “And you ended up in his bed, right?” Martinez strikes a familiar pose with his palms outstretched. She answers, “I think it was a love sack”. Good move, killer. Let the jury know that you are more concerned with the exact terminology for the furniture item on which you rolled around as opposed to the fact that you actually did roll around with a stranger on some type of bed or couch – right after you slaughtered a man and knew, at that very moment, that he was a corpse in his shower stall just waiting to be discovered. I’m sure the jury just gave her points for that.
Arias closes her eyes again. She is trying to look like this is all just too much to talk about. Martinez says, “Okay, and with regard to that, at that point, according to you, Mr. Alexander still wasn’t dead, was he?” If she says yes, the jury is free to disregard all of her direct testimony indicating that she received confirmation of Travis’ death on June 10, 2008 (which, I must admit, still boggles my mind. She killed him and she knows that, but until she got outside confirmation of his death a full six days later, she didn’t allow herself to “grieve” his death. Seriously, has anyone ever heard such crap in their lives?).
Arias thinks for a moment and then answers, “It wasn’t discussed”. I didn’t hear Martinez ask her if she discussed the death of Travis with Ryan Burns (or anybody else prior to Detective Flores or Dan Freeman). I heard him her ask her if she knew Travis was dead when she was enjoying the comfort of Ryan’s love sack and a horror movie. Martinez says, “Well, did I ask you whether or not you discussed it with Mr. Burns?” She doesn’t answer, and Martinez adds, “I didn’t, did I?” She answers, “I wasn’t talking about Mr. Burns.”
Martinez continues, “I am asking you, at that time, didn’t you tell us yesterday that at the time you went up to Utah, you weren’t sure if he was dead? Do you remember telling us that?” She answers, “Not in Utah, but the Hoover Dam… or right before the checkpoint.” Actually, she was all over the map on this one while Nurmi was questioning her. Yes, she did say she wasn’t sure about Travis’ death, but she was sure, but she wasn’t sure. In looking back over the testimony regarding Ryan Burns, Arias said she was there to see if there was a romantic spark. Nurmi, her own attorney, referred to the entire visit as a “pretense.”
Everyone knows why she suddenly realized what she did when she got to the check point at the Hoover Dam. She was worried that someone had discovered Travis. She was worried that someone knew she was at his house the day before. Check points — places like the Hoover Dam — would have been alerted to be on the look-out for Jodi Arias, a woman in a rental car — a person of interest in a murder case. That’s why she suddenly had a moment of clarity that quickly dissipated after she got through the Hoover Dam check point without issue.
Martinez asks, “So, when did you know he was dead, tell me that.” There are several long seconds of silence as she searches the sky for an answer. Finally, with a twisted mouth, she says, “Well, I got confirmation on June 10th, but…”. Martinez interrupts and says, “Okay, so you got confirmation on June 10th, but you met with Mr. Burns, what… before June 10th… didn’t you?” She answers, “Yes.” He continues, “You met him on the fifth, right?” She answers, “Yes.” Martinez continues, “And so, at that point, you didn’t know, according to your own story, that Mr. Alexander was dead, right?”
Arias is on the borderline of exasperation with this pain in the ass prosecutor. She rolls her eyes, lifts her hands, and tries to explain it one more time. She says, “I guess I knew (she shifts her hands in an up and down fashion to demonstrate the mental scales she is envisioning)…” That would have been good enough for Nurmi. He would have thrown her another “how did he abuse you?” question once she stopped talking. However, Martinez waits. Finally she adds, “I wasn’t accepting it”. A voice of reason takes over as Martinez states, “You either knew or you didn’t… which is it ma’am? Make up your mind, please.” Arias thinks about how she would answer this if Nurmi were asking the question. Just then, we hear an objection. It’s Nurmi, of course, and he says, “Objection, asked and answered.” I don’t know why Arias is handed a pass, but she is. Martinez is told by the judge to ask another question. I’m sorry, but I don’t understand why the jury can’t get an answer to this very relevant question.
Who among us could slaughter someone, shove him in his shower stall, and then drive our car to some potential lover’s house a few hundred miles away, get some take-out food, watch a cool horror film, go to third base, and then say,”I think maybe I kinda/sorta/could have killed the guy at the last house I was at. No, I’m not answering any questions about that.”
Here’s the encore performance: Martinez asks, “Did you know he was dead when you and Mr. Burns were kissing?” Martinez is flustered, and I can see why. She doesn’t have to answer. Of course, Nurmi objects again. The objection is overruled. I don’t even know why. Sustain the first objection – overrule the next one… very confusing…..
Arias answers, “Umm, yeah… I did.” What? Martinez asks, “You think you did, but you’re not sure, then?” She lifts her left hand, boldly displays her gimped finger, and answers, “I wasn’t really in my own mind. I was out of my mind… sort of”. Martinez doesn’t care if she was in her mind or out of it. He’s finally gotten to the question he wants to ask, “So, if you didn’t think he was dead – that portion of you didn’t think he was dead – then it’s okay for you, at that point, if you didn’t think he was dead, to sort of roll around (he’s making circles with his hands) with Mr. Alexander, then… with Mr. Burns (no problem… I can’t keep her bed buddies straight either). Well, that was okay, huh?”. She looks down, thinks, and gives the most memorable response in this trial. Jodi Arias actually says, “I’m single.”
Right, she’s single and Travis is dead. In her mind, what’s the problem?
My Mom HATES “pushing” her book, so her daughter is posting this information for her. 🙂
Behind The Words Volume 1 hovers in top five bestsellers in True Crime, but we wanted to reach out beyond the Jodi Arias trial watchers –so we are offering it at $1.99 today, $2.99 tomorrow and $3.99 on Saturday.
So… feel free to share on your facebook page 🙂
My Mom has gotten hundreds of letters from readers saying they loved both books, which blows her away.. every single one she gets I hear, “Really? People like it THIS much?” If, some of you that wrote these incredibly kind letters, could take a moment to review the book(s) it would be appreciated so much! It is VERY easy to do – you just go to the page (link below, same place you go to buy the book you can review it on!) leave your “star rating” (1, 2, 3, 4 or.. hopefully 5!) and write as little or as much as you wish. If you want to leave a 3… ignore this post… 😉 haha
As a warning… sometimes with positive reviews, Jodi Arias supporters (we have even seen some family members) have commented on the positive reviews in order to argue. You can report those and they will go away (the posts, not the people… lol)
Thanks so much to all of you for all of your support and kind words!