Witness Intimidation (Corrected)

If you thought things couldn’t get any more bizarre in the Casey Anthony Jodi Arias case, it seems the prosecutor, Juan Martinez, engages in flagrant witness intimidation.  Not just so that he can win the case – he’d already done that as of last week – but so that he can win a death sentence:

Martinez said that he had merely interviewed [proposed defense witness] Womack about her testimony last week, on May 15, and asked her pointed questions about her drug use and unreported income that could subject her to criminal prosecution. Womack decided to invoke her Fifth Amendment right in response to his questions, Martinez said.

I love how the word “merely” is thrown in there.  Why not say as well, instead of references to “pointed questions”, that he just “casually mentioned” to the witness that if she testified in a way he didn’t want her to that he might prosecute her?

The solution for this kind of misconduct by the prosecutor is to throw his whole case out and refer him for discipline, after which he should be disbarred.

I’m completely serious.  There is no conviction that matters as much as making damn sure no prosecutor thinks he can do something like that and get away with it, or win his case despite misconduct like that.  At the very least he should lose his case – immediately and forcefully and make damn sure you pin the blame right where it belongs, your honor.

But that’s the way the system should work; not the way it does.

Rather 10 guilty men go free rather than 1 innocent person convicted?  Screw that.  How about this:  rather than allow a public official to so abuse his authority and subvert a fair trial for any person – but especially the most reviled, who are the easiest for a crude bully to pick on – shut down the court house entirely and let everyone go, because if you permit that abuse you have already turned the courthouse into a farce.

Bullies make me mad.  You?

Correction:  According to this, defense counsel was present when Martinez interviewed the witness.  This changes things.  While I still think the substance of the questioning was improper and an effort to intimidate the witness, I would have to say that although it is an extremely unfair tactic by the prosecutor, it wouldn’t be criminal.  Unethical, but not criminal.



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66 responses to “Witness Intimidation (Corrected)

  1. Heather

    John, I have yet to find anyone I despise more than Martinez. He’s a true sociopath to my mind, a bully in the extreme, he has no conscience, he can’t have. And that Judge? I am so annoyed with her, she has guilt written all over her face. Both her and Martinez should get disbarred.

    Kirk Nurmi came through tonight, the words fell out of his mouth and I’m just so pleased. I think, after all this, that the verdict will have to be overturned, this farce of a trial cannot continue, surely?

    I want an acquittal, nothing else will do.


  2. Is it even legal for him to bring that up during her statement? It has no relevance to the current case. Arias has not been charged with anything drug-related nor to do with monetary fraud.
    Are there not laws that protect witnesses from invasion into their private lives or history unless it is directly relevant to the case at hand?
    You cannot surely cite “credibility” – if a person is a drug user or moon-lighter how is that relevant to their testimony as to a person’s non-violent nature or other characteristics?


    • Ugh. You’re asking some good questions that I can’t answer right now, but the really, really bad part is that he got her alone, outside the court setting, with no lawyer present, not even the defense lawyer who was calling her.

      Very, very ugly. Criminal by any sane standard. Blatant, just incredible he could even think that he could do that. Shows you how spoiled these prosecutors are. And having it exposed and then the judge does nothing? You can see why prosecutors all over can get the idea that they act in all events with impunity.

      I’m just telling you, as a matter of preserving civilized, lawful and just behavior or indeed civilization itself – allowing this kind of thing is a far, far worse transgression that anything Jodi Arias did or is even alleged to have done. It’s disgraceful how the courts routinely minimize this. It makes a mockery of the “compulsory process” to which the defendant is entitled under the 6th amendment.

      It’s disgusting. And this part is at least as much the judge’s fault.


      • Guilty beyond a shadow of a doubt

        Hold on. This prosecutor is doing what any defense atty would do if given the oppty. Any attorney would question the credibility of any witness. That’s lawyering 101. And please explain to me how the really dirty behavior isn’t the defense for either NOT anticipating standard operating procedures and warning and having womack prepared for certain questioning by the prosectr OR not caring at all about Womack being strung up? This isn’t the first time that either deliberate non preparation of a defense witness ended up backfiring on their witness or non preparation of what they SHOULD expect implies ineffective counsel.


      • trialwatcher

        JMRJ: You make this statement at top of your response to Pitchforks:

        “Ugh. You’re asking some good questions that I can’t answer right now, but the really, really bad part is that he got her alone, outside the court setting, with no lawyer present, not even the defense lawyer who was calling her.”

        I’m confused…….the last paragraph of your post at top of page says the “defense counsel was present when Martinez interviewed the witness”. So where did you learn that Martinez “got her alone”? Or do you mean that the defense team “got her alone”?

        In the court document you show Martinez does not directly say that she came back in the room and was “represented” by the defense team. He “implies” they left the room ‘together’ (i.e., ‘at the same time’), and when she came back in she refused to answer any more questions. They claimed in court they gave her no advice and she was then assigned a court appointed attorney. Seems to me that what happened was they “advised” her only to leave the room and when they talked to her alone all they said was “you need to get an attorney before you answer any more questions”. What is wrong with that?? She was their witness…..and they advised her to get represented by her own attorney.


        • Yes I had to correct the post. I had originally gotten a news report, quoted in the post (follow the link) that implied that only Martinez had interviewed the witness, by himself. Turns out other lawyers were there, so I was wrong about that.



          • trialwatcher

            Ok,MRJyou are explaining and answering only your “correction” ,but not responding to the rest of what I am saying about the _implication_ in Martinez’ statement, and in court yesterday, that the defense lawyers were advising the witness. You said that “changed things”. How did their presense in the interview “change things”?


            • Well, if what had happened was Martinez meeting with the witness without counsel, and at the meeting threatening to prosecute her, under the guise of “interviewing” her, than I think that would have been criminal conduct.

              As it is, threats to prosecute her in the presence of lawyers representing her is unethical, but not criminal.

              It’s unethical because the prosecutor has an obligation to protect the defendant’s rights to a fair trial, or at least not violate those rights. One right from the 6th amendment is the right to “compulsory process”, which means you have the right to call witnesses in your defense. This right become illusory if the prosecution threatens to prosecute all the witnesses you try to call.

              If he has impeachment material to raise on cross examination, then go ahead. But to bring all that up beforehand in an effort to dissuade a witness from testifying at all is wrong, not so much to the witness but to the defendant.


    • Hi Pitchforks.

      Well, “credibility” questions give a cross examiner a lot of room, and there would be nothing improper about Martinez delving into all that while the witness was on the stand. If he decided he would prosecute them later, even though that would seem plainly retaliatory, that would perhaps be an issue with that prosecution, and unfortunately not an easy one for the defense.

      One of the problems in a trial is that whereas you are unbiased and can see that the prosecution’s delving into matters of questionable relevance just to embarrass a witness is a lousy tactic that calls into question his other assertions, most jurors would only see that problem if the defense lawyer did the same thing. I often point out that a prosecutor can be really obnoxious to a witness but a defense lawyer cannot. Defense lawyers have to be far more subtle and save almost everything for closing arguments.

      None of that changes the bottom line here, though: meeting with a defense witness in advance and threatening to prosecute them if they testify is just naked witness intimidation and should he held to be a plain and straightforward due process violation. The system relies upon, and has said so on too many occasions to belabor the point, that the prosecutor’s job is to do justice, not to obtain a conviction. They are given a lot of power on that condition, and when they cross the line – and criminal behavior certainly crosses the line – that’s a due process violation because it undermines one of the pillars that supports the proper functioning of the system in the first place.


    • trialwatcher

      It is relevant to her testimony because Martinez knows of Jodi’s apparent marijuana use when she was a teenager. I don’t know if Patty Womack was the friend involved who was ‘growing pot on the roof” with Jodi. And perhaps Ms. Womack’s current use of “illegal substances” has nothing to do with that long ago incident.

      In regard to the pictures of Jodi she was apparently selling…..but not reporting as income, Martinez is legitimately using that to impeach her testimony as someone who is making money off the case. Bastard that he is!!

      Is it moral and ethical for him to do this? Of course not…..but he can get away with it. What is outrageous is for him to threaten to prosecute her for these things, not just “impeach” her on the witness stand. Did he just “merely” warn her that could happen….or was it a direct threat?

      What about what he is trying to do also to Donovan? the friend of Jodi’s who tweets for her. She is on probation for something, I don’t know what, and he threatened to revoke probation because she is now “associating with a convicted felon”. The question is……has she “associated” with Jodi AFTER the conviction?


  3. Guilty beyond a shadow of a doubt

    I think the defense in the end couldn’t use patty Womack for other reasons. Nurmi stated last week Womack would speak to a lack of support from her own family and arias’ abusive childhood. The problem is Womack gave an interview to media weeks ago that Martinez is also aware of that Nurmi pretended not to be aware of in which Womack said arias had an ‘idyllic childhood’ so which is it? And WHY would defense use such a witness anyway? Why not call a family member at all? What happened to Darryl brewer or heck Matt McCartney?sorry, but I think the problem here is everyone smells manipulation afoot.


    • Well, Guilty, none of that is the issue. You have Martinez admitting he intimidated a witness, basically saying “so what?”, and the judge signing off on that. It doesn’t matter what the witness would have said, it doesn’t matter who suspects who of what, there is no ‘suspecting’ here this was a flagrant crime by Martinez.

      If the defense had done anything even remotely similar to any prosecution witness they’d be disbarred already and probably in jail.

      There isn’t a legitimate opposing point of view on this one.


      • Guilty beyond a shadow of a doubt

        Yes, I know u believe that but you are wrong. Martinez didn’t ‘admit to intimidating’ anyone. That’s lawyer talk, specifically kirknurmi talk who has consistently attempted to blame Martinez for every single failure in their case. I don’t agree with you and what’s more the judge doesn’t agree with you and everyone understands that judges DO consider potential appeals down the line and do not want to see their rulings overturned. I am not typically a betting wan but ill bet on this…I can with 99.9 percent certainty say NO judge will overturn this ruling or any other that pertains to this case. She has given wiiiide latitude with this defense at every turn. Just becs she will not allow the defense the oppty to blame the prosecutor for an admittedly weak case…does NOT mean she has been unfair to the defense. Like I said before it is the defenses job to put up honest and unassailable witnesses.

        How on earth does the defense now rationalize not putting up ANY witnesses to speak on Arias’ defense? When u put up a witness who is credible and is not lying you should not have to worry about anything the prosectr brings. Where r they? This was a ruse. You r so quick to judge the prosectrs media use, but when it comes to the defense REQUESTING an on camera hearing -in which they knew most of the damning evidence that shows real reason this witness didn’t want to come forward…you believe they are being completely honest and are NOT simply trying to manipulate perception of the situation.

        Why no other witnesses??????


        • trialwatcher

          Wait a minute, Guilty, “the real reason” she does not want to testify is because Martinez THREATENED to prosecute her for her own drug use and for selling pictures of Jodi and not reporting as income. This is a way for him to _impeach_ her credibility, but is CRIMINAL to threaten to prosecute her for what he asks her in order to “impeach” her.

          any witnesses for Jodi in this phase can be questioned by Martinez and he will EXPLODE any side issues these witnesses have ostensibly to impeach their credibility. This will be broadcast all over the country and indeed the world. I would not want to subject myself to that either.

          And you just know NONE of these witnesses for Jodi will have any impression on this jury at all. It is a waste of time and breath to even present a case in this phase of the trial. I am very happy that Nurmi brought this all forward in court and not behind closed doors.


      • pati b

        The defense/defendant have done worse!!! Accusations of pedaphelia with absolutely no evidence, attempting to send messages to witnesses through magazines before trial, forged letters, dragging the victims name through the dirt (again with no evidence) which judge allowed. The list goes on and on! I see it that jodi was given the upper hand in this case but the fact tht she is a murderous sociopath and it is very obvious is the reason that she was convicted “not” because Womack didn’t testify on jodi’s behalf. Either way we would have had the same outcome because any sane person can see through jodi’s lies!


  4. Monica Brown

    BS on you. Drug use and unreported income are offences as in against the law. Obviously Womack even knows that and that makes her smarter than you. That is why she invoked the 5th. duh. It is also why there was not trial last week. Who goes to court in cutoffs. She has been there in court long enough to see how people dress, etc. Doesn’t want to be seen, scared of threats. BS more like going to court doesn’t pay as well as Nancy Grace. What no death threats after that? She was never going to testify ever. It is all a game, are you too blind to see it. Womack was never going to testify. Darrel was never going to show her face, and good old Alyce or however the hell you spell it never entertained a though of speaking up for Jodi because it would have proved everything Martinez ever said about her, she was biased, would have been proven without a doubt.

    Juan Martinez, misconduct for what. Doing his job. It is actually refreshing to see a layer who upholds the law. What you suggest he turn his back to drug use and abusing the income tax system, What is he supposed to do, turn his back to illegal activities, like Jodi’s defense lawyers do. ie promoting lies. Those are the lawyers that deserve to be disbarred. Sorry bud but the average Joe is charged for their drug use, and their income tax evasion. When you are in a position, when you have power and when you turn your back, to laws that are broken, that is when you abuse your position. If Martinez has done anything wrong it is in not actually charging Womack for the laws she has broken. Gee should I happen to be caught using illegal drugs or invading income tax, I really hope someone will give me a way out…..cheap.

    The farce and circus the Jodi Arias trial has become is her doing and no one else. The media interest is her doing, Inside Edition etc, and her little games. She is not the victim, never was, never will be. The victims are Travis Alexander, and his family, always were and always will be! Kool aide is not all its cracked up to be, Jim Jones is the prime example. Jodi pours it as well as he did!!!


    • You and Guilty are totally missing the point. He can cross examine her all he likes. He met with her in an inherently intimidating setting and threatened her outside of court. Totally illegal, criminal conduct.


      • GUILTY beyond a shadow of a doubt

        No JMRJ, he did not “threaten” her at all -Martinez can and certainly has the right to interview this witness prior to ‘in court cross examination’- especially since there is some question as to the “truth” that will be asserted in court. Just a month or 2 ago this same witness-P Womack- who Nurmi says intends to relay to this jury how Ms Arias received “no support” from her family and had an abusive childhood -gave a media interview in which she specifically talks about how Arias’ had such an ‘idyllic’ childhood. But how about NOT calling such a witness in a Death Penalty case so obviously problematic? And why IGNORE completely Darryl Brewer who seems to have no problems and was game all the way? In his recent interview that I just watched with the local Arizona news station even he made it clear that there was lots of legal drama and strategy going on by the defense that he did not understand and was clueless as to why he wont be called. Now I am starting to wonder whether the lawyers aren’t purposely assisting Arias in a successful ineffective counsel appeal. But why would they do that????

        But what I am really interested in are the legal maneuvers the defense is attempting today. When Nurmi stated ‘in light of the court’s decision not to allow a mistrial’ he and Wilmott would then request to withdraw as counsel and then… in response to the court denying their request to withdraw… he states they will then call no further WITNESSES. What the hell??? Did Nurmi REALLY expect the judge to A. GRANT a mistrial or B GRANT their motion to withdraw? When they stated they’d be calling no witnesses and the judge basically shrugged like “OK, strange strategy” but your client will allocute yes? The looks KN & JW gave each other like a deer in headlights and they were unsure what to do next….the body language going on between them was stunning. Did they REALLY think any of those motions would be granted???


        • trialwatcher

          Guilty,you are completely ignoring that Nurmi said in court yesterday that there was no sense in putting on any defense if he could not present a “complete picture”, i.e., not just the one witness, Brewer, who would testify.

          And when did Nurmi say P. Womack was going to testify that Jodi had “no support” when growing up? I, and we, would have to re-listen to Patty’s statement in an interview about this “idylic” childhood statement. Are you taking this out of context, somehow?


    • Heather

      I’m totally aghast, are you for real? Do you even know what prosecutorial misconduct is?


    • Penny Gates

      Monica, you said, “Juan Martinez, misconduct for what. Doing his job. It is actually refreshing to see a layer who upholds the law. What you suggest he turn his back to drug use and abusing the income tax system,”

      P.Womack is not on trial. She is merely making a statement of her feelings about the defendant. The prosecution’s attempt at putting her on trial is not upholding the law – unless she were the one on trial.

      Also, since when did ‘hypotheticals,’ bullying witnesses, perjury (see the changes testimonies of both the Medical Examiner and Detective Flores), leaks to the media and witness threats be deemed as ‘upholding the law?’ See the prosecutorialoversight website (dot org, I believe) and you might learn something about prosecutors not always following the law; resulting innocent people serving life or even on death row.


      • Penny, yes, thanks for the comment. It seems you get that this kind of conduct is an important issue, quite apart from the innocence or guilt of the defendant, although it certainly makes for an unfair trial which of course in turn makes a wrongful conviction more likely.

        Many people don’t get that. And wrongful convictions are a terrible thing.


    • trialwatcher

      Monica, you have no idea what you are talking about and you are making things up as you THINK they happened. You write:

      “What you suggest he turn his back to drug use and abusing the income tax system, What is he supposed to do, turn his back to illegal activities, like Jodi’s defense lawyers do. ie promoting lies. Those are the lawyers that deserve to be disbarred. Sorry bud but the average Joe is charged for their drug use, and their income tax evasion. ”

      First of all…..Martinez is THREATENING to prosecute her, which is not the same as having “proof” about any of that.

      Does Martinez have PROOF that she “evaded taxes” on her sales of the pictures? does he even know how much income she earned and whether it was taxable on her current tax returns? (I believe if sales were under $600 it does not have to be reported). If not…..he cannot “charge her ” with anything. If the IRS wants to investigate….that is their job, not Martinez’ job.

      As far as Patty’s _supposed_ drug use…..does Martinez even KNOW the details of that issue…..has she been accused/ charged by another court? Is she on probation?? Does he have witnesses that will tell that Patty has “substance abuse issues”? No details about this have been revealed…..but you BELIEVE everything Martinez accuses people of with no proof and with impunity.


    • Sorry to say but Juan Martinez has done exactly that. He has turned a blind eye to criminal activity. A felon yet. It’s true. A person close to this case has organized an event which has led to her being investigated by the DOJ in CA for felony witness tampering. It is also a felony for a police officer to lie under oath, as Flores has done, as Horn has done, as DeMarte has done, and yet again, because it serves his purpose, Juan turns a blind eye. Misconduct is cumulative and there are ongoing investigtions into misconduct in this DA’s office. He will get what’s coming to him regardless of what we believe or don’t believe.


    • Matthew Thompson Dalldorf

      I can’t be the only one who sees the irony in a martinez supporter bringing up the Jonestown massacre in his argument. I just can’t be…


  5. Monica Brown: Starting a post with “BS” doesn’t exactly render YOUR “testimony” as coming from someone of mature, adult, reliable character. In your zeal to put down anyone who is questioning the extremely questionable court protocol going on here, you have completely misconstrued my questions. Of course I am aware that drug use and unreported income are against the law. That is not what I was asking. I do not pretend to know every clause of US law, but as John IS a lawyer I was putting questions to him about what is permissible and what is not in DUE PROCESS while expressing what seemed to me to be fair/unfair. Smartness is not about knowledge, as your simplistic statement implies, it is in great part about being able to understand the syntax of what people say – you have demonstrated that your skill in that area is somewhat lacking. I agree with you on one thing – Patty Womack was EXTREMELY misguided in agreeing to go on Nancy Grace who has a Ph.D in exploitation and lying. Martinez is so apparently a bully in the courtroom one has to wonder what he does in private – generally what people do in private is far worse than what they do in public, so asking how he might have “persuaded” Ms. Womack during their time alone is quite reasonable. Many attorneys are saying that Martinez has been out of line. “Darrel”, otherwise known as male Darryl DID show HIS face today. He was there waiting to testify. HLN spread the idea that the defense was going to call LaViolette, she was not, as far as I have heard, on the list. What makes a witness “credible”- a person from the Mormon community who has a LOT to lose if they don’t tow the party line?? A person who fears the Hughes’ power posse and slandering them in the trash media?? There have been many witnesses who could have come forward and given a whole different story than that which has been propagated, but they were in fear of their lives being destroyed. That has been communicated to me by people who are in a position to know. Suggest you reads my article:
    Unraveling Justice
    By the way, I am not your “bud”, mate….


    • GUILTY beyond a shadow of a doubt

      Hmm. John here says what Martinez did was criminal.

      Another lawyer on another blog says what the defense lawyers did today in court just does not happen. Ever. Ever. It was definition of desperate. Will go a long way in helping her to appeal based on ineffective counsel. They are seriously in panic mode and will try anything to save her from death.

      Another lawyer on yet another blog says Jodi Arias’ lawyers in their last minute motions to withdraw are in CYA mode because they believe Arias will lie during allocution and perhaps bring out evidence previously ruled inadmissable. (Lawyer says rules of evidence are much more relaxed during this phase.) Says her attys want no suborning perjury charges.

      Another lawyer says that the defense calling no witnesses is smart strategy because it will put a lot of hard focus on the state.

      Bottom line it seems like it comes down to whichever lawyer can argue their position best. But from what I have seen during this trial I think any appeals judge that looks at the entirety of this case will see that this defendant has just really really bad facts on her side. Her lawyers fought hard for her based on what she gave them to work with, I think this defense strategy might have started as a question by her defense and Samuels but in the end, she ran with it and unfortunately went into “overkill” with it despite almost NO corroborative evidence.

      John, you seriously are missing huge parts of the story if you haven’t watched the trial. Why don’t you start?


      • “Bottom line it seems like it comes down to whichever lawyer can argue their position best.”

        Interesting point. I think it’s correct with a bench trial, but jurors are really a funny bunch and quite unpredictable.

        Many years ago, I had the honour and privilege of working for law firms that were perpetually on trial. As part of preparation, we retained marketing research firms who recruited “mock jurors” and held “mock trials.” During trial, they also hired “shadow jurors” who sat in the courtroom and observed as if they were a juror. None of these people had any idea which side had hired them. I sat in on interviews with them. I was also present for post-verdict interviews of jurors who agreed to speak with the lawyers.

        I was always surprised when much of the evidence went completely over the jurors’ heads — most especially testimony of experts, and in particular, if it was technical. Their decisions as to who to believe often — but not always — came down to which lawyer looked like someone they could relate to, or which witness wore an outfit that gave the impression of dishonesty, of something else that I considered trivial — particularly after working day and night on trial preparation for months beforehand.

        During one mock civil trial that I recall, the mock jurors found in favour of the defendant simply because the plaintiff’s attorney “never had a hair out of place” and “looked like a politician.” Whereas, the defense attorney often had “rumples and creases” in his suit and spoke with a distinct Chicago accent that they related to. Therefore, he appeared more honest than “the other guy.” Needless to say, we hired an image consultant for the attorney (“the politician”) to “rumple” his image slightly before trial. It worked. We won a multi-million dollar verdict!

        I also recall listening to (actual) jurors after another civil lawsuit — one which we won, but they awarded a monetary verdict significantly lower than we had hoped. They loved the plaintiff and felt he could be their next door neighbour. Unfortunately, a portion of the claim was loss of consortium which his wife testified to. The jurors had incredible dislike for her (which I had predicted prior to trial, actually). She was glamourous and curvy in a way that was difficult to conceal entirely in the suit she wore to court. She was also partial to tanning booths and testified with a healthy glow. The jurors worried that if they awarded the monetary judgment we asked for, she would divorce her husband for lack of performance and take half the money to run away with a boy toy.

        In a post-acquittal interview with jurors in a criminal homicide trial several years before that (and, I believe, before jury consultants were widely used), they liked the way the defendant dressed and his hair, and that made him credible. I was particularly proud of that one because I had worked on his image, and it was not easy, as he belonged to a gang and didn’t present well. I had even worked with him on diction.

        I was a 21 year old girl at the time, freshly imported from Ireland. At first, I was quite disgusted that my boss represented criminals, especially murderers who showed up with suitcases full of cash. He had been a star prosecutor for many years before and was, by then, in semi-retirement. We had many talks about a defendant’s rights to due process and adequate representation before I began to understand. He never inquired as to his clients’ guilt because he so firmly believed in these rights. It was actually because of him that I decided to apply to law school, and in part, because of that defendant. He changed his life after being acquitted of the crime he did not commit. I bumped into him some years later and he still referred to me as “ma’am” and thanked me. It was very touching.


        • So it wouldn’t be much of a stretch (to coin a phrase) to see how a jury could have a gross misunderstanding of evidence and based on that misunderstanding, sentence an innocent person to M1 or even death. That’s a scary thought…


      • LOL I’m having enough trouble just managing the comments around here. Maybe I’ll watch the trial some other time after things have calmed down.


      • trialwatcher

        Seems to me, Guilty, you are quoting “laywers on blogs” as saying this is “never done, ever”, and that Arias will “lie during allocution”…..probably lie……just more biased speculation by self identified “lawyers” on “blogs”. I am going to suggest that you are actually listening to the “lawyers” on HLN who are spewing this silly speculation today. Don’t want to reveal you are watching HLN?? lol


    • Heather

      Good to see you here, Pitchforks! I appreciate and always enjoy reading your very well written and informative articles and have read every one of them, you’re always right on the nail.


  6. Dennis

    To think that the prosecutor would jeopardize this conviction by doing something that some here claim is in clear violation is very hard to believe.


    • What he did was terribly wrong – criminal – but it probably doesn’t jeopardize the conviction. Courts, including appellate courts, just ignore it.

      To give you a sense of why it’s such a due process concern, the defense, even if they wanted to, can’t do the same thing. In a witness intimidating contest, the prosecution wins, because they can effectively intimidate witnesses and the defense can’t.

      So when a prosecutor engages in this conduct he deprives the defendant of a fair trial. That’s the bedrock of a due process violation, but like I said court ignore it, just like the trial judge did here. They turn the defendant’s trial into just so much bullshit.


      • Heather

        John, I am at a total loss as to why others can’t see this–truly worrying. Its as obvious to me as the nose on my face!
        Makes you wonder what trial they’ve been watching, doesn’t it, I mean, these people presumably live in the US, they should know about their injustice system (one would hope.).
        I shake my head in disbelief!


        • trialwatcher

          Heather, once people make up their minds about the guilt of a defendant their thinking/reasoning goes out the window and they become BLINDED by their own prejudgments. If these same people believed in the innocence of the defendant……they would then absolutely see the criminality of what this prosecutor has done. I do not in particular see Jodi as “innocent” or “guilty”……I do however see INJUSTICE in the court system and THAT is what I rail against. I did not “like” or “dislike” Jodi…..I did not “like” what I saw the prosecution doing in this case and therefore I felt she should be found not guilty or guilty of a much lessor charge.

          I also did not like what I saw in the OJ Simpson or Casey Anthony case. Call me crazy, but I look for the prosecution to PROVE their case, regardless of my personal feelings about the defendants. IMO, the verdicts in both those cases was CORRECT. This verdict, in this case, is the MOST INCORRECT I have ever seen in all the trials I have watched ever since the O.J. case.

          Bottom line: Juan Martinez is the MOST CORRUPT prosecutor I have ever seen and he needs to be exposed for what he is…..for the sake of our system of justice, if not for Jodi’s sake.


          • Heather

            Oh I agree, Marion, I separate it too, at first. In this case its very different (mind you I’ve only ever seen films of murders on TV so can you imagine the shock? ) but I STILL don’t know how they don’t see his bullying, his tantrums, his blatant insults, his yelling, growling and throwing things!! And put 2 and 2 together! lol 🙂 Even if they think she’s guilty, watching him should be enough for Anyone to see it! :):) All I think is needed is a bit of common sense, but they seem to have had a bypass..!

            You’re right of course, they ARE blinded to it, even though I have trouble seeing how anyone could be.
            My feelings are that both he and the Judge should be disbarred and JM, a defendant for misconduct. He should have a jail sentence.


    • Oh dear, Dennis, what quaint faith you have. Your rosy bubble needs bursting. Read Mark Geragos & Pat Harris’ book “Mistrial”.

      Also my article I posted in my response to Monica above…. Unraveling Justice….


    • Heather

      There’s a simple answer to this, Dennis, he just doesn’t care. Even when the judge sustains an objection by the defence when he has crossed the line, what does Martinez do? He repeats it as if he never heard. To my mind there is no question about it, Martinez is a sociopath; he bears all the hallmarks.
      Ironic isn’t it? Jodi has swapped Travis for Martinez; one sociopath for another.


  7. Reading the Motion for Mistrial and the Objection thereto is particularly telling:



    Intimidation regarding photographs Ms. Womack provided to HLN and may have been compensated for, but may or may not yet have reported to the IRS as income??? This is unbelievable.


  8. Chrysz

    Kudos for Nurmi today!!!


  9. Anonymous

    Kudos for Martinez! If Patty cakes didn’t have a criminal background she wouldn’t have to worry now would she? He’s a fantastic prosecutor. Nurmi should be ashamed of himself for representing a lying murderer! I see how one sided you are. Face the facts. Jury found her guilty. Moving on.


    • Heather

      Anonymous, has it occurred to you that Martinez is looking for excuses? Criminal background? For smoking a bit of pot? My goodness!

      You mean you really can’t see how Martinez is abusive to witnesses, how he yells at them, insults them, throws things and has tantrums dancing around the place?

      And you think What? That he’s fantastic? You APPROVE of ABUSE? For that’s what it amounts to, anon.

      The jury didn’t ”find” her guilty, they had decided that from day 1.

      And you didn’t see all the corruption? The ME Lying, Hughes Lying, Flores Lying and Tot Doc Lying by omission? Where were you? Or did you see it and approve of that too?


    • pati b

      I agree with you anonymous, moving on to the sentencing phase!!!


  10. Tangled web we weave

    Womack lives in CA. All of the allegations against her involve actions which occurred in CA. And it isn’t about money she earned by selling her Arias’ tales being reported to the IRS; it is about her allegedly collecting CA welfare benefits and failing to report the money to the State of CA while receiving benefits. So how can anyone claim Martinez, an out of CA jurisdiction AZ prosecutor, threatened to prosecute Womack for her alleged failure to report the income to CA if she testifies? They can’t because Martinez can not prosecute her and she, Arias’ counsel, Womack’s counsel and Martinez knows he can’t. So why would anyone claim anything different unless claiming such serves an agenda?

    The truth is Womack is scared of her actions being investigated back in CA and her words stated on the stand in AZ being used against her in an investigation. And that is precisely why Nurmi and Willott stopped Martinez’s interview of her and court was adjourned until today – the same interview the author originally claimed had place without counsel but actually occurred with Nurmi and Willmott present on last Wednesday. ( the author has since added an edit to the end of his article indicating this rather than just correcting it ). Solely due to the issues Womack’s actions brought into her ability to testify, the AZ court provided her with counsel on Thursday of last week and that counsel advised her to plead the 5th when crossed. That is why Womack is not testifying.

    Unless Nurmi has total disregard when it comes to doing his homework and preparing his witnesses, he knew about the interview, hoped Martinez didn’t, rolled the dice, and hit snake eyes. Oops, Martinez knew about the interview, and did his homework on Womack. Worse for the defense, Womack has made other statements that are directly contrary to what the defense wanted out of her. Martinez knew about those too. So who here is really should be looked when it comes misconduct? Martinez’s checkmate on the defense’s attempt to revise history made the issue clear as day.

    Add to it that Darryl Brewer has said he was ready and willing to testify both Thursday and today; that he has no idea of why he is not testifying; that with a good command of the English language he explain the reason with using the word “antics” twice and also the word strategy; the wide-spread acceptance of why no one in Arias’ family can testify, how trying that blow the can of worms wide open, and we have a better picture of the truth.


    • Tangled, interesting comment, but a couple of things:

      1. I don’t know where you’re getting your information. You’ve laid out a rather specific and elaborate sequence of events about the interview. Where are you getting this from?

      2. I don’t see where Martinez is checkmating anyone, or where there’s any strategy here by defense counsel other than trying to produce witnesses for their client for a very limited purpose: asking the jury not to kill her. Doesn’t seem to be working, not because of an tactical game playing but because people are afraid to come forward and say anything. I saw one twitter comment, obviously from someone who’s on the “hate JA” train, to the effect that only losers have even offered their testimony on behalf of JA.

      Which in this atmosphere makes perfect sense. Anyone with anything to lose is staying a thousand miles away from this circus. As commenter Jessie has ably pointed out.


  11. Jessie

    Well, I think we’re seeing in spades why the friend wouldn’t testify. I’m not even reading any comments but yours, JMRJ (which are conveniently all in blue). I’m sure I’m missing some good stuff, but this is what every forum devolves into — usually worse, since comments here haven’t really shown up in force here. Give it time.

    But this is why the woman isn’t testifying. She’s afraid of the mob outside. I read the press coverage first. Most of the headlines just say that Jodi Arias has no witness testifying in her defense. Which is technically true, but sounds as though she never had anyone willing to testify for her. You know….’cause she’s obviously such a vile, evil, lying sociopath.

    Oh, and narcissistic. Apparently, half the country is now psych experts as well as procedural pedants.

    So, I jumped from the press coverage to actual video of the motion. The defense attorneys were there when Patty Womack was being deposed. Martinez didn’t question her alone. I didn’t even interpret Nurmi’s motion as being based on Martinez bringing up things that could result in criminal charges. Martinez said, in his verbal response to the motion, that these things could be criminal offenses, but Nurmi said Womack withdrew because of threats from strangers.

    No one can get a fair trial in these conditions. There’s apparently chatter among lawyers that Jodi Arias has just been handed an appeals victory. Do you agree?

    If she’s guilty, that would be an outrage. If she’s not, it would be a stroke of incredible luck. But this verdict should be thrown out to maintain the rule of law. It’s been tainted by witness intimidation and we have every reason to believe by juror intimidation. Even if every single one of them avoided the coverage (and I believe they did — I’m an optimist), they still saw the mob outside. They still knew what was expected of them and what would happen to them if they didn’t deliver it.

    They’d lose their jobs. They’d lose their homes. They’d be referred to, even years later, as “village idiots” with the suggestion that they should be imprisoned. It’s not their fault, but their verdict is unreliable in these conditions.


    • Jessie, very well said.

      Sequestration. It’s an enormous burden on everyone and courts are reluctant to do it. I also question its effectiveness: even if the jurors don’t follow social or other media they have people close to them who do, and I don’t buy that they’re unaware of the public’s frenzied behavior just because they’ve been sequestered. Someone said, maybe in a comment here, that the Casey Anthony jury was shocked at how much coverage there had been. Color me very, very skeptical on that. The Casey Anthony jury overcame the partisan frenzy not because they were sequestered but because Baez did an absolutely brilliant job.

      So I come back to mistrials and dismissals. The braying mob screaming for blood would quickly learn to tame themselves, at least somewhat, if their braying resulted in the person they want to string up being freed. That kind of rationale gets applied all the time in the law: the law as “teacher”. We punish crimes in part to deter others. Same here. Dismiss cases and let them go, and that will deter the frenzy the next time.


  12. Tangled web we weave

    Womack first asserted the 5th last Wednesday and then with her own counsel provided by the court, continued to state on Thursday that she was going to plead the 5th. One can’t testify if they are not going to say anything – being a witness isn’t a pick and chose what question you will answer depending on who and what is asked sort of opportunity. Womack was out on lastThursday. But Nurmi couldn’t allow the real history to go out without revision, que the Womack is scared card.

    And isn’t it crazy that the fragile, scared Womack had no fear during the multiple interviews she gave to the media when she stated she was Arias’ friend, dug out and sold her wedding and childhood photos, and collected money to do so. Her fear just so happens to only occur when she finds out she will be asked questions that make her accountable for her actions. That is what scared her, that is when she asserted her 5th Amendment rights. And lo’ and behold, Patti is still, even today, communicating with the media – the source of what led to all that scary stuff.

    Spin it how you will, Jodi supporters, we know you will, even if it means you have to put words into Jodi’s witnesses mouths that are contrary to what they are saying today. This is just like old Gus who testified there was someone in his car that was afraid to come forward on Direct, but then plead the 5th when the prosecutor asked him who it was on cross. Everyone knows Gus plead the 5th because he did not want to perjury himself. But the Jodi posse says, “No, Gus plead the 5th to protect whoever was in the car”. Yes, that’s the posse claim regardless of the fact that the 5th is solely a means to avoid self-incriminating testimony and not an opportunity to pick and chose what testimony a witness will offer. Patty, Gus. Wash. Rinse. Repeat.
    And then there is Darryl, the other scared to speak guy, who just today happened to gave an on camera interview to the media. A requested and voluntarily interview just hours after Nurmi played the “they are all scared to speak” card. Yeah right, that sure makes sense when you mix in reality. Darryl was so frightened, people in fear of media coverage always seek out interviews they know will get national attention when they are scared of the consequences of media coverage. Also during the interview Darryl said he wanted to testify, was willing and ready to do so today, was not told he wasn’t going to be called, and stated it all occurred as a result of “antics” and strategy. If Darryl didn’t testify because of fear, don’t you think someone should have at least told Darryl he was allegedly scared. How do you explain the fact that just hours later Darryl said he wanted to take the stand and was doing the interview because he was unable to because the Defense did not call him?

    This is all nothing more than an appellate issue ploy, ad a very dangerous at that. And with the facts on record along with the very scared people going to the media, it isn’t going to work. It is really hard to convince people you are horrified of water when you are in the middle of a swimming pool.


  13. Dennis

    Though the state claims a fifth issue and the defense intimidation, the judge found the reason/s for the witness’s refusal to testify speculative because the court is unable to so determine?

    If the penalty phase is distinct from the trial proper could a court overturn the sentence and leave the verdict unchanged? Thought I read that somewhere.


    • Dennis

      Just watched: so the court found that a sealed proceeding would eliminate fear of intimidation, and that her reason/s for refusal are speculative without more information–which I gather won’t be forthcoming as it would require an oath/cooperation from the witness.


  14. Heather

    How do I feel about Martinez? He’s the biggest bully, lying, scheming scumbag to ever walk this earth. He should be jailed indefinitely. I can’t stand the sight of him – he is evil personified.


  15. Pingback: Research | arbeyconlon

  16. pati b

    I suppose a lying, manipulative, murderous, scumbag whore should be free to walk the streets???


  17. pati b

    Jodi is evil personified, I’m just glad she’s in her rightful place! Locked away forever.


  18. Hmm, yes, John. That was my reaction too. Made me chuckle. Wonder why it took her so long to find us!
    To wit:

    Hate, the Oxycontin of Women in Social Media

    Perhaps I will ask Patti to be interviewed for Routing Out – she would be an excellent subject for personifying the genre……


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