Jodi Arias Guilty Of First-Degree Murder In Arizona

4:26 PM, May 8, 2013   |    comments
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Video: Jodi Arias guilty, tears roll down face during verdict

FILE - In this May 1, 2013 file photo, defendant Jodi Arias sits in the courtroom during her trial at Maricopa County Superior Court in Phoenix. It has become a real-life soap opera for people around the world and dozens of fanatics who camp out on a Phoenix sidewalk to get into the show. The star is none other than a small-town waitress who killed her lover. Jodi Arias has been on trial since January, and her case has developed an enormous following with its tales of sex, violence and betrayal.

PHOENIX (AP/WUSA9) -- The jury has found Jodi Arias guilty of first-degree murder in the death of her one-time boyfriend in Arizona.

Arias is charged with first-degree murder in the June 2008 death of Travis Alexander, a motivational speaker and salesman, at his suburban Phoenix home. Authorities said she planned the attack in a jealous rage after being rejected by the victim while he pursued other women.

Arias now faces either life in prison or a death sentence.

Arias initially denied involvement and later blamed the killing on masked intruders. Two years after her arrest, she said she killed Alexander in self-defense.

Jurors got the case Friday afternoon. They reached a decision late Wednesday morning. 

Testimony in the trial began in early January, with Arias later spending 18 days on the witness stand. The trial quickly snowballed into a made-for-the-tabloids drama, garnering daily coverage from cable news networks, and spawning a virtual cottage industry for talk shows, legal experts and even Arias, who used her notoriety to sell artwork she made in jail.

Alexander suffered nearly 30 knife wounds, was shot in the forehead and had his throat slit before Arias dragged his body into his shower. He was found by friends about five days later.

Arias said she recalled Alexander attacking her in a fury after a day of sex. She said Alexander came at her "like a linebacker," body-slamming her to the tile floor. She managed to wriggle free and ran into his closet to retrieve a gun he kept on a shelf. She said she fired in self-defense but had no memory of stabbing him.

Arias acknowledged trying to clean the scene of the killing, dumping the gun in the desert and working on an alibi to avoid suspicion. She said she was too scared and ashamed to tell the truth.

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