Retrial, Really? The Relentless Obsession to Execute Jodi Arias

She was found guilty last year in the 2008 killing of her ex-boyfriend.

So why is Arizona repeating this spectacle? Arias was convicted on May 8th, 2013 of brutally murdering Travis Alexander in 2008, but the jury hung by a vote of 8 to 4 (8 for death) on the question of whether she should be executed.

(It’s always possible that happened and she rejected it, but it seems highly unlikely based on the pleas of the defense team and determination of prosecutors to pursue death).

Full disclosure: I have never thought this was a death penalty case. Not because I believe her far-fetched claims of abuse but because as horrible as it was, this is a somewhat typical domestic murder -- hardly representative of the worst of the worst for which I believe the death penalty should be reserved. She was a jealous, troubled and spurned lover.

Does it legally fit the definition where a prosecutor could pursue the death penalty? Absolutely. This was an especially "cruel" murder, with Travis stabbed 27 times, shot and nearly decapitated. Under Arizona law, that's enough to seek death. But just because they can pursue it, doesn’t mean they should. They are about to embark on an estimated two month-long retrial solely on the issue of her sentence.

Maybe the most compelling argument in favor of moving forward is that Travis Alexander's heartbroken family seems to want her to face the death penalty. While that should be a consideration, and I have great sympathy for this family who handled themselves with poise and grace as Arias shamelessly attacked Travis, they don't, and shouldn't get to make that decision. This is the people of the state of Arizona versus Jodi Arias and so the district attorney, not the family, represents the people.

Prosecutors already proved that Jodi Arias is cunning, dangerous and evil. So now this sentencing re-trial runs the risk of engendering some level of sympathy for Arias that is as unwarranted as it is unnecessary.