|Jodi Arias Feels 'Betrayed' by Jury|
|By RYAN OWENS||May 22, 2013, 8:45 AM|
Hours after Jodi Arias asked a jury to spare her life for killing her ex-boyfriend, Travis Alexander, the convicted killer maintained in a jailhouse interview with ABC News that it would have been "meaningless" to apologize to Alexander's family in court because no one would believe her.
Arias, 32, was convicted last week of first-degree murder for the June 2008 stabbing and shooting death of Alexander. Arias has been branded a liar by the prosecution because she initially denied killing Alexander, then claimed two years later that she killed him in self-defense.
"I think in a sense, the words, 'I'm sorry,' just seemed meaningless, especially since nobody believes what I'm saying anyway," said Arias, who in court tearfully told the family that she never meant to cause them so much pain, but she did not apologize.
Asked why she didn't apologize to the family in court, Arias replied: "I did apologize to them." Reminded that she did not use the words "I'm sorry," Arias said, "Well, then I'm sorry I didn't say that. Because certainly I am sorry. I think in a sense, I-- the-- the words, 'I'm sorry,' just seemed meaningless, especially since nobody believes what I'm saying anyway. "
She went on to say that, "I think people believe that because I lied, that everything that comes out of my mouth is a lie. Which is unfortunate, because, if that were the case, then that would be true for everyone. Because I don't know somebody that's never lied," she said.
The same jury that convicted Arias will now weigh whether she'll get the death penalty later today in a Phoenix courtroom.
"I feel a little betrayed by them," Arias said of the jury. "I don't dislike them. I just was really hoping that they would see things for what they are. And I don't feel that they did."
If the jury opts for a life sentence, the judge will have the option of determining whether she spends the rest of her days behind bars or is eligible for release after 25 years.
"All I know is that, if I were given freedom again, I would handle it very, very responsibly," Arias said. "If you're not abusing me and attacking me and threatening to kill my life, there's no reason to fear."
Following her first-degree murder conviction last week, she gave an interview to a TV station and said she preferred the death penalty. Arias walked back that comment in her allocution statement to the jury on Tuesday, as she tried to convince them to send her to prison so she would have an opportunity to contribute to society.
"I think that if I stood before the jury asked them to sentence me to death, then it's kind of like asking for assisted suicide," Arias said.
Arias said that receiving the death penalty would only bring more pain to her family and especially Alexander's family.
"I'm hoping that they'll be able to move on and not think about me, if that's even possible. I want them to be able to put it behind them and get peace and get closure," she said. "I get a death verdict, this will drag on and on and on."
Asked if she would sentence herself to death for killing Alexander, she said no because she doesn't believe in "capital punishment." Arias said it will take time to understand the jury's decision if they sentence her to death.
"I will have a rudimentary understanding of why. And I think that understanding would grow with time," Arias said.
While Arias repeated many of her claims from previous interviews and testimony on the witness stand, she shed new light on the behind-the-scenes aspect of the trial. Arias said her lawyers would not allow her to call on witnesses who could have bolstered her claims that she was a victim of domestic violence at the hands of Alexander.
"My attorneys made decisions not to call certain individuals that I feel would have helped me. And I'm not blaming them," Arias said. "There have been a lot of things I don't agree with that my defense attorneys have done or that they've advised me to do. But for the most part, I take their advice."
Arias' case has drawn many connections to the Casey Anthony murder trial. Anthony was acquitted in 2011 of murder in the death of her daughter, Caylee Anthony; much like Arias, she initially told elaborate lies and then claimed at trial that she was a victim.
Many in America expressed outrage, feeling the jury made the wrong decision letting Anthony walk free.
Arias said the attention around the Anthony case may have influenced her first-degree murder conviction.
"I think some, yes. All? No. But I don't think that may be in the minds of some people," Arias said.
If Arias is sent to death row, she will be transferred to Arizona's state prison complex at Perryville. Arias would become the third woman on Arizona's death row.
"I try not to think about it. But if I'm confronted with that reality, then I will deal with it," she said.