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Convicted Killer Jodi Arias May Get New Trial Due To Prosecutor Misconduct
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Jodi Arias became infamous over the past decade for murdering her ex-boyfriend, Travis Alexander. She was arrested in 2008 for his murder, convicted in 2013, and sentenced to life in prison with no possibility of parole in 2015.

Now, four years later, attorneys for Arias are seeking a new trial, claiming Maricopa County prosecutor Juan Martinez acted improperly during the investigation and trial. Arizona Central reported that the Arizona Court of Appeals agreed to consider “numerous allegations of misconduct” against Martinez. The outlet included a list of issues the Court of Appeals will look into:

  • Which Arizona Supreme Court cases accurately describe the standard of review for addressing prosecutorial misconduct?

  • Is Arias is entitled to a new trial if there was intentional prosecutorial misconduct, and would double jeopardy play a role?

  • What factors are relevant in determining whether Arias was denied a fair trial based on prosecutorial misconduct? Does publicity around the trial affect the decision?

  • Was she deprived of the ability to present her defense to the jury?

  • If there was prosecutorial misconduct, did it contribute to her guilty verdict?

  • What authority supports reversing a conviction based on prosecutorial misconduct when there is overwhelming evidence of guilt?

  • What authority supports a conviction when there has been a pervasive intentional prosecutorial misconduct?

  • What steps can the court take to constrain a prosecutor’s conduct inside the courtroom during the proceedings? Does the court have authority to control the prosecutor outside the courtroom if it impacts the proceedings?

  • Should the publicity outside the courtroom be considered when deciding if the atmosphere of the trial was “circus-like?” Can publicity outside the courtroom grant a reversal?

Martinez is also facing ethics complaints from the Arizona State Bar, which Maricopa County Attorney’s Office spokeswoman Amanda Steele said was a completely separate issue.

“We want to ensure our community’s understanding that there are two separate proceedings,” she said in a statement. “In one, there is the criminal conviction and life sentence in the Arias case that … is currently being considered by the Court of Appeals. This also involves claims of prosecutorial misconduct that allegedly occurred during the Arias trial. These separately are being reviewed as part of complaints submitted to the Arizona State Bar.”

In the Arias case, Martinez has been accused of having flirtatious or sexual relationship with two female bloggers and attempting to get them to dig up dirt on jurors during the trial. One of the bloggers allegedly “bragged to at least two others that she helped Martinez dig up negative information about a juror who refused to vote for a death sentence,” AZ Central reported.

The outlet also reported that a juror’s name was posted online just minutes after a mistrial was declared in the case.

Martinez also allegedly asked a removed juror what other jurors were thinking about the case. That juror also allegedly sent Martinez photos of her “naked breasts to Martinez after he told her he was ‘a breast man,’” the outlet reported.

None of this changes the evidence against Arias found in her car, home, rental car, and at the crime scene.

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