Jodi Arias Jury Sees Bloody Handprint on the Wall
(PHOENIX) -- Grisly photos of a bloody palm print on a wall and floor were viewed by the Arizona jury Tuesday in the murder trial of Jodi Arias.
A crime scene investigator from the Mesa, Ariz., police department described the photos, which showed tile floors and walls of a bathroom and hallway that were covered in blood when Travis Alexander, 30, was found dead in his home in 2008.
Arias, 32, cried at the sight of the photos. She is accused of stabbing Alexander 27 times, slitting his throat, and shooting him in the head. She has confessed to killing Alexander, but argues that it was in self-defense.
Detailing photos presented by prosecutors, Heather Conner, a latent print examiner with the Mesa police department, identified bloody smudges on the floor as shoe prints and pointed out a bloody palm print on the floor and on a door. She did not identify whose prints they were.
Prosecutors are expected to argue that Arias slit Alexander's throat in the hallway and then dragged his body back into the bathroom.
Alexander's sisters, seated in the front row of the Phoenix courtroom, did not look up at the photos during the testimony.
Prosecutors are also expected to call the Maricopa County medical examiner to testify about whether Arias shot Alexander after he was already dead from stab wounds, a fact that could determine whether she gets the death sentence.
If Arias shot Alexander after he was already dead, it could qualify as a "heinous and depraved" killing, which would help the prosecution's case for the death penalty.
Arias has admitted to killing Alexander. Defense attorney Jennifer Willmott told the court during her opening statement that Arias was abused and controlled by Alexander, who was a "sexual deviant" that posed a threat to her.
The prosecution, however, argues that Arias stalked Alexander after the pair broke up and after he began dating other women. They allege that she murdered Alexander out of jealousy, and then changed her story twice when lying about the murder to investigators.
Prosecutors have told the jury that Alexander was a devout Mormon who was seduced and then stalked by Arias. They dated from 2006 to 2007, but continued a sexual relationship until his death in 2008.
Willmott has cited sexually-graphic emails and phone calls between Arias and Alexander as evidence that Alexander was a sexually violent individual.
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