(PHOENIX) — Just four months before he was found dead in his Arizona home, Travis Alexander called police and reported that his car tires had been slashed, according to records obtained exclusively by ABC News.
The incident, described as “criminal damage,” lists Alexander as the caller and his Mesa address, but Alexander did not report who he suspected was responsible.
The call, made to the Mesa Police Department on Feb. 2, 2008, has not been introduced in court, despite testimony regarding tire slashing from multiple witnesses during the four month-long trial of Jodi Arias, Alexander’s ex-girlfriend who is accused of his murder.
Arias, 32, is charged with first degree murder and could face the death penalty if convicted. Closing arguments are expected to begin late this week. She initially denied killing Alexander, 30, but claimed two years later that she killed him in self-defense.
References not only to tire slashing, but also to stalking and spying, have been made repeatedly throughout the trial, always handled delicately it seems due to the prejudicial nature of the testimony. Arias has never been charged with anything stalking-related nor tied directly in court to any incidents of tire slashing.
The first reference to stalking was raised by the defense. In their opening statement, they told the jury that Alexander had called Arias a stalker, and yet invited her into his home and his bed over and over again, including the day he was killed.
An early prosecution witness, Marie “Mimi” Hall, testified that Alexander had mentioned he had a stalker, that his tires had been slashed, and that he believed Arias had followed he and Hall on a date.
Another woman Alexander dated, Lisa Daidone, testified that in the middle to end of February 2008, “strange things were happening.” When asked to clarify, she said that a home security alarm alerted that a door had been opened. She and Alexander went to investigate and found nothing.
Fielding questions from the jury, Daidone said Alexander had referred to Arias as a stalker and that when Arias called him, “it was almost as if she knew we were together at the time.”
Even Arias talked about a tire slashing incident. During a recorded phone call with the lead detective shortly after Alexander’s body was found, Arias informed the detective that Alexander’s tires had been slashed and that he was “worried,” but never pointed to a suspect.
Arias’ own expert, Alyce LaViolette, was asked by prosecutor Juan Martinez whether Alexander was “extremely afraid of the defendant based on her stalking behavior.” LaViolette answered, “He was afraid of her, yes.”
“Because of her stalking behavior, correct?,” asked Martinez.
“Correct,” LaViolette said.
But LaViolette clarified, saying, “People who are stalked generally take action about being stalked, Mr. Martinez. And I saw no action taken.”
What exactly Alexander intended to report to police in February 2008 remains unclear. When officers attempted to follow-up with him about the call, they received no response.
Jurors will likely never hear about the call to police, at least not in the guilt or innocence phase of the trial. The state rested last Thursday and closing arguments are set to begin later this week.
Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio
Dylan Byers, CNN
Matt McFarland, CNN
Ali Larkin, CNN
Morgan Loew, CNN