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Updated Feb 26, 2013 - 12:53 pm

Prosecutor shouts at Arias during Arizona murder trial

PHOENIX — Testimony in the case of a woman accused of killing her lover
turned into a one-sided shouting match Tuesday between Jodi Arias and a
prosecutor grilling her over memory problems.

Arias told the prosecutor his aggressive
demeanor and posture was causing her to forget crucial details or provide
concise answers.

“I’m not having a problem telling the truth,” Arias softly told prosecutor
Juan Martinez, who stammered with his response, his voice growing louder.

“But you are having a problem answering my questions, right?” Martinez
snapped back.

In stark contrast to her testimony under questioning by her own lawyers, during
which she alternated between poise and tears and recalled precise details of
practically her entire life dating back years, Arias recalls virtually nothing
under questioning by Martinez.

She often responded to his questions by saying, “Sure,” to which Martinez
loudly snapped backs that he is merely looking for a yes or no answer.

The barbs have led to numerous private conferences between attorneys and the
judge as defense lawyers repeatedly object to Martinez’s aggressiveness,
accusing him of badgering the witness.

Later Tuesday, Martinez focused on how Arias had broken up with previous
boyfriends who she learned had cheated on her, as she said she did with Travis
Alexander, yet has testified during the trial how Alexander had complete control
over her.

“So when you decide something, you can do it right?” Martinez asked.

“Yes,” Arias replied.

Arias is charged in the June 2008 death of her lover in his suburban Phoenix
home. She said she dated Alexander for about five months before breaking up with
him but continued to see him for sex up until the day she killed him. She said
she was forced to fight for her life after Alexander attacked her, but police
said she planned the attack in a jealous rage. Testimony began in early January.

Arias spent Monday calmly trying to explain away her lies as the prosecutor
hammered her about not being honest with authorities, friends or family, even
sending the victim’s grandmother flowers after she killed him, all in an attempt
to throw off suspicion and avoid being charged.

Arias said she was scared and ashamed when she initially told authorities and
others that she had nothing to do with the killing, then later blamed it on
masked intruders before eventually settling on self-defense.

Arias has said Alexander invited her to his Mesa home on the day of the killing
for sex. His body was found about five days later. He had been shot in the head,
suffered 27 stab and slash wounds and his throat was slit.

Of the day of Alexander’s death, Arias said he was in a rage, body slamming her
and chasing her around his home. She said she grabbed a gun from his closet, and
fired it as they tussled, but doesn’t recall stabbing him. She said she then
remembered putting a knife in the dishwasher and disposing of the gun in the
desert as she drove from Arizona to see a man in Utah, where she spent the night
in his bed kissing and cuddling as she worked to create an alibi and avoid
suspicion in the killing.

Arias’ grandparents reported a .25 caliber handgun stolen from their Northern
California house about a week before the killing — the same caliber used to
shoot Alexander — but Arias said she knows nothing about the burglary. She said
she brought no weapons to Alexander’s home on the day she killed him,
undercutting the prosecution’s theory of premeditation.


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