UPDATED 9:24 AM PT — Thursday, March 26, 2020
The Arizona Court of Appeals has ruled that Jodi Arias will remain in prison despite misconduct from prosecutors. On Tuesday, the court upheld her 2015 conviction.
Arias will continue to serve life for the killing of her former boyfriend Travis Alexander. The victim’s body was found stabbed dozens of times and shot in his Mesa, Arizona home back in 2008.
Arias’ defense team said Maricopa County prosecutor Juan Martinez hijacked her trial by improperly questioning and intimidating witnesses as well as intentionally feeding on negative publicity by the media to give him an advantage during the case.
“This court should reverse Miss Arias’ conviction because it was obtained during an unfair trial,” stated attorney Cory Engle. “Prosecutor in this case engaged in pronounced and persistent misconduct which permeated all stages of the trial.”
The court agreed that Martinez exhibited a pattern of intentional misconduct during the trial, but his actions did not warrant a reversal of the murder conviction. The court concluded that Arias was convicted based on her guilt and was not entitled to a new trial.
“We have a whole line of case law that says if there’s overwhelming evidence of guilt, we are not to overturn a conviction based on the conduct of the state,” said Arizona Court of Appeals Judge Jennifer Campbell.
With regards to publicity the trial received, the court said Arias failed to show that either she or the jury were affected by the media during her trial.
The Arizona Attorney General’s Office and the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office said they agree with the ruling to uphold the conviction. Arias’ defense team has yet to respond to the court’s decision.