Transcript for Jodi Arias Found Guilty of Murder
This is a special report from ABC news. I'm Dan -- in New York jurors have reached a verdict. In -- trial of -- areas who is accused of murdering her onetime boyfriend. In his suburban Phoenix hungry looking at a live picture inside miracle -- county superior court house. That is the defendant right there -- areas waiting to find out exactly what the jury has come back with -- verdict. Now prosecutors say that she plotted the attack out of jealousy -- -- Says it was self defense she initially denied any involvement in fact she later blamed the killing. On masked intruders two years after that after her arrest she said that she killed Alexander. In self defense jurors got the case on Friday afternoon and as we've just been hearing they have reached a conclusion they have reached a verdict. And we are waiting for that to be read just moments from now eight men four women were on the case. Let's listen now. As the proceeding is getting under way. Please be seated. The records show the presence of the jury the -- -- -- council. Ladies and gentlemen I understand you have reached a verdict the verdict form has been handed to the mile. Please come forward. Her book read in record. The verdict. State and Arizona vs Indiana -- verdict count one. We the jury duly impaneled and sworn in the above entitled action upon our coast do find the defendant as to count on first degree murder guilty. -- Jurors find premeditated. Zero -- felony murder. Seven buying both. Final -- person. District you verdict so say you want at all. Ladies and gentlemen the clerk is now going to ask each of you a question please answer yes we're now. Juror number one -- -- -- for. Juror number two -- she. Juror number three position humor yes juror number four position -- verdict yet. Furniture number six -- cheaper yeah. Jury members said this year she verdict business. Journal remind -- verdict this juror number twelve -- you convert. -- number thirteen did you convert. Your number fourteen -- converted units. Your numbers sixteen and Fisher king verdict. Juror number eighteen -- -- can verdict. -- -- -- Next phase of the trial will begin tomorrow at 1 o'clock. Please be here at 1245. Between now and then -- admonition continues to apply. Do not speak about this case do not -- any media about this case. Are there any questions. You're excused. -- -- And so -- areas has been found guilty of first degree murder. The two types she was facing both felony and premeditated. You could hear some of the -- as that verdict was read in the courtroom there. And now has the attorneys are approaching the bench receiving further instruction from the judge. The next phase will begin tomorrow which will be the penalty phase. A want to bring it panacea -- a -- -- a prosecutor to talk about this. And -- -- thank you for being with us today this case has been so closely watched for the details that not only -- areas had shared. But from the evidence that prosecutors. Had been gathering over the years since that 2008 murder. At the same time a first degree murder charge carries -- strong burden on the prosecution. What did they do successfully to convince those jurors. -- beasts the prosecution here I really think put together a very tight case you know this was not the most complicated case although it went on for the trial for almost four over -- month session today. That people presented their case in two and a half weeks this was never a whodunit it was just he had to show who -- it which they had that was a given and what happened and they showed. So many different pieces of evidence that showed that premeditation. The -- that was missing from her grandparents' home the same caliber of the week before she changed her hairstyle that date before. She bought gas -- so that her half. Would not be able to be traced so -- when she went from her home in California. To her boyfriend's in Arizona. And then right afterwards that she started to concocted alibi they really put very quickly the very powerfully -- piece of evidence. And really what we sought after that was over two and a half months of the defense trying to break down the incredibly strong case that the prosecution have proven and he'll explain to me the differences between felony and premeditated under -- of that first degree murder -- shore. In Arizona first degree murder can be proven in different ways -- there with two counts that applied here premeditation. Means that she actually intended this before hand. When you talk about what people think of is an intentional murder. You can form -- the moment that you in this case dads are cut -- Hughes. Premeditation ask you something that is thought out ahead at times so that is the one thing that they could you also have felony murder and that means that during the course of a felony. That the intentional death was caused in this case the charges that she was burglarizing the home she was inside of Travis Alexander's home without his permission and Arizona. Give verdict has to be unanimous as to guilt or non guilt but it did not have to be unanimous about which way they got to the first degree and that's why you heard. That was five jurors that came out with the premeditation. And seven neck -- that they felt that it had been proven beyond a reasonable doubt both and that's why now goes to the next phase of the case is -- at the penalty phase. And I -- to get into that -- just don't but if you are just joining us -- areas has been found guilty of first degree murder. For the death of her boyfriend back from a case that started in 2008. And and -- -- -- -- I want to ask you a little bit about that next phase that will be moving forward on this because -- areas is now eligible for the death penalty how does the judge and the jury proceeded in this next portion. It is potentially a two phase process the next phase is called the aggravating phase and it's basically a mini trial. Because now once again the prosecution has its first approved. The aggravating factor to make her. Actually death eligible has not yet been proven although she's been found guilty of premeditation -- to be an aggravating factor in this case it's cruelty that she inflicted. Suffering upon. Travis Alexander in a cruel manner the jury has to find that the people present evidence. That proves that to their -- that -- satisfaction beyond a reasonable doubt if they do it moves until now a third phase and that is the phase -- the jury would ultimately decide either. Death like without the possibility of parole are 25 to life. If the jury during the aggravating face fines that the prosecution did not. Prove cruelty beyond a reasonable doubt -- is up to the judge. To sentence -- areas to either like without the possibility of parole or 25 to -- if they don't find. The people have proven the cruelty factor than death is off the table and the sentencing moved on from there. And a stay with us -- wanna go to ABC's right now is -- inside the courtroom when that verdict was read -- what was the reaction when the verdict came back as guilty of first degree murder. Well there was an audible -- From being victim's side of the family Travis Alexander sibling. Many members of this family have been here for every single day of the trial and they -- I think it's fair to figure relief when they heard the -- first degree murder. Many of them also broke down and started crying and then were later. Smiling at each other and then patting each other. On the back -- about -- just say it on after that. Verdict what -- -- -- fascinating what. Didn't happen on -- -- majority -- side of the courtroom. -- came in today dressed in all black people made a lot of about what a first degree verdict was read. She -- Absolutely no emotion other than resignation and you didn't hear any cries or any -- First side of the courtroom and Mulder. Her grandmother they were all there but very little emotion quite clear that they had a pretty good feeling -- was coming today and now they will push forward. With a penalty phase and try to security areas from going to -- Before the Baylor had led her out of the courtroom did she make eye contact -- any kind of -- of a contact with anyone from Travis Alexander's family. I actually left court just before -- -- so I can actually because that I can't tell you when she first walked beer and chief -- quick little smile on at her family and there were more members of her family there. That had been their throughout that the trial so she -- acknowledged. But -- nothing that I know toward -- public interest and. Throughout this entire trial which is not a going on for almost five months has she had a great deal of family members that have been in support of -- their presence being in the courtroom there. I think -- critics say it's been bare bones it's been mom. Our grandmother recently showed up the mother -- a -- -- They have been there -- taking notes writing in the journal just about every day to patrol in fact I think every day at the trial. -- Father did show up 41 week -- -- health problems but no and it's quite it's been quite noticeable that there are. In fact very few people in that courtroom there to support. -- -- And if you largest joining -- -- areas has been found guilty of first degree murder up her onetime boyfriend of his murder back in 2008. Ryan I'm assuming -- now onset of the courtroom do you have vantage point of by the crowds have gathered outside of the courthouse there have they had any kind of a visible or audible reaction to that verdict. I am very confident that it saying that there were cheers however I was not there to witness them but there were awful lot of people outside. And first degree murder really is what everyone was expecting here -- -- -- a surprise there were a lot of concern that. Mystery what was taking them so long it took four days it -- fifteen hours a lot of people here in Phoenix -- -- Goodness gracious that there is more evidence of -- than any crime anybody can think of what in the world is taking them so long but I think it's fair to say there was a lot. Of release when the first degree was -- but. Oh from the beginning what can be Hastert had a deterrent for months of talk about let's not forget -- the area -- -- thing I'm telling her story. For an unprecedented eighteen days I'd like you -- -- to find an attorney anywhere. Ever heard of a -- in on the stand -- -- have a lot to consider. And they wanted to take their time in doing so they wanted to be serious about it because at the end of the day they may wealth and -- area. To -- and that's something everyone thinks they ought to take seriously and they. And I want to bring you back into the conversation if you wouldn't mind because I think -- -- have a great point of the fact that because -- -- such a tremendous amount of evidence. That was coming out in this trial that lasted four months. -- areas -- as you pointed out taking the stand herself having to answer some of the jury's question they had had peppered her with. More than 200 question Arizona being. One of only a handful of states that allows that to occurred during. Court process. But and I I just wanted to find out from your thoughts on the -- -- of reaching a verdict in the time that they did having to go through that amount of information. -- for whether you are the prosecution the defense or the defendant -- the families of those involved always incredibly. Different called nerve wracking time when now. The control is out of your hands and now -- -- over to the Jerry. You know based sat there for four and a half months and they were just listening to evidence they are processing it so each time a piece came to -- sure each individual's. It started to help form would ultimately be there. Verdict but then Maggie take all twelve of them and they're not allowed to discuss it. Until they have gotten a final instruction the judge and now for the first time after those four and a half months they sit is a group. And try to come to a unanimous verdict so here where it is mean most serious charge that anyone can face. It is incredibly serious crime it's important to both sides these people these twelve people sat there and did exactly what they're supposed to do which is why the jury system is such an amazing system. They -- their date dissected the evidence and you never know how twelve different people interact. And they took their time. And for them it was but about two days it was yesterday today in about an hour on Friday and then they came back with a unanimous -- -- Watching this scum of the family members coming out of the courtroom now. You can see it being swamped by reporters and supporters. Better -- with and listen and to some of the questions and some of the responses that are. Maricopa County superior court house. Okay. Course we're gonna continue to watch that as well but and I -- -- -- speak to you a little bit about how the actual. Breakdown occurred from this verdict. The jury finding -- areas guilty of first degree murder. Because she was facing two types both felony and premeditated. And responsiveness more people are leaving the courthouse -- we have the breakdown of how the jury had voted on this and -- I know that. When the burden is so high as it is for -- first degree murder charge. The jury must come to some kind of -- consensus. And again if you can explain the difference between felony and premeditated and a. Sure you know hear what happened was -- she was charged with premeditation which means that he planned to do -- intended to do this. Not at the moment she began her various assaults on Travis Alexander but ahead at time. So that was one way and five jurors found that absolutely that count was proven beyond a reasonable doubt. But the other seven -- yes absolutely that's proven beyond a reasonable doubt but they also fell. That the second theory the prosecution put forward the felony murder was also proven and what that means is that. During the course of a felony in this case that while a -- -- taking place that. -- -- did not have the permission of Travis Alexander to be in his home -- that she was there with the intention to commit another crime. That it was while she was committing the burglary that she intentionally killed him and seven of the jurors said. The prosecution has proved that to our satisfaction beyond a reasonable doubt as well so that's how you have that breakdown and again in Arizona. Although guilt or non -- has to be unanimous the way they get there the theory under which they find her guilty does not. And Ryan I want to bring you -- because I know that you have been covering this case from the very beginning spent four months in a courtroom there. And now as we were moving onto the aggravation phase what have you been hearing about the -- in this. That that portion of the process might take. It's used to go back and remember Obama your bank -- -- -- -- -- -- -- on the number eighteen days telling her story. That -- I'm Brenda Bennett you'll get another -- are. Could talk to this jury. If you're willing to be up there are eighteen to eight. During the guilt or innocence saying I hesitate to guess what she might do now that she -- her life really are on the line. In addition about. We will hear from lots of people who will try to talk about receiving quality that -- area. Over the years we'll hear from her family members but this really could drag on for quite some time. And in a lot of ways that maybe -- most compelling part of the trial if you can believe that. Because -- Martinez the prosecutor will be fighting hard -- Make sure this jury knows every gruesome detail of what -- -- not convicted of doing -- export -- And then -- -- cheerful testimony. From Travis its family about why they believe -- should be put to death for what she did so a lot. So compelling moment. -- to come out of -- like that one more thing that I I personally discount fascinating -- and -- jurors. Were dismissed. During this proceeding over these many months one what stick. One had an allegation of -- conduct that's not the point right now appoint is that those three dismissed jurors. All made sure that they were there today. When that verdict was read and they all that together in the deli not far from where the media -- The gallery. And they they wanted to beat air and that that speaks to you know -- I thought to myself or if I somehow got. Out of jury duty after four months but sitting here and listening to -- this will be the last place I would wanna come back to that they felt so compelled by what they heard. They wanted to be here today I think that speaks volumes. I think that's an excellent point -- because this case certainly has -- so much attention not only. In Arizona or the United States but internationally as well because as you pointed out the details of this case. Have been so unusual about the murder of this 2002008. -- Travis Alexander. And -- -- get. As we're going into this aggravation phase can we expect something US Ryan -- pointing out that there will be a lot of detail that will be going into this next phase. Can we expect something -- that wasn't brought up during the trial. It's possible but I think what's more likely is that there's going to be much more emphasis on the crime itself I mean this is an incredibly. Rudolph crime I mean you can Kelso -- by any one of the three ways that she chose. She shot him she slit his throat from ear to ear and then she stabbed him 27 times and I think that. The prosecutor is going to really bring that home even more than just when you hear it -- sounds like enough but now. They are going to be asked for her to receive the ultimate punishment which in Arizona is life. Or excuse me is going to be the lethal injection so I think they're really going to show the incredible cool. Manner in which she chose to kill -- and so while something else may be new if anything it's more going to be more of the sadistic if you will -- -- -- of what she chose to do to our victim in this case. -- you one last time before we let you go because your final thoughts on this of for a case that has really captivated so much attention. And has certainly had taken -- a great deal of time and a lot of people's interest on this as they're moving into the penalty phase now. I'm interest to find out from the people that you spoken with on the ground did did they feel as if that -- the length of time in the amount of attention and energy that's been put in this case has been justified. Well I think most people would say. Let's answer that question when they find out what Germany's ultimate punishment is here. But I didn't think what a lot of people thought that the dragging on she is being able to introduce it -- -- that cereals cereal that didn't seem directly germane to the actual crime. And everyone -- was. Was -- 32 year old woman at the state won't put to death you have got to give her. Every opportunity to make it expense and they were -- dead and that defense. -- -- So what happens from here on out will be fascinating to large and I believe the level of interest in this case will only go up now. Anybody based. Because big guilt or innocence stated of this trial and -- that the -- areas started over. They better sit down about -- seat belt. Certainly far from over ABC's Ryan Owens on the phone with us -- thank you for your time your insight and the invaluable reporting that you've been. Doing for all of the ABC platforms and I also want to thank anise seed in the colosio's prosecutors to help walk us through this afternoon's verdict and of course now as removing onto the aggravation phase which will be the penalty phase. As -- areas has been found guilty of first degree murder we'll have a complete report on abcnews.com. For now. I'm Dan Cutler and New York with an ABC news digital special report. This has been a special report from ABC news did --
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