- Photo: Jodi Arias
Was Jodi Arias' intimate relationship with Travis Alexander kept a secret from friends and family? That's the allegation made by Arias' defense attorney yesterday in court.
"Travis had made more friends at (the Mormon) ward, and had (Ultimate Fighting Championship) fight nights at his house many times, and Jodi was in town but she wasn't there," Daniel Freeman, a mutual friend of Alexander and Arias, testified.
"There was that group of friends, them and Jodi, two different groups, and so Lisa [Daidone] and friends from church were there, but Jodi wasn't there," Freeman added.
The defense has painted the picture that Alexander was abusive towards Arias, leading her no choice but to defend herself four years ago during an attack. Alexander was found dead of a gunshot wound to the head, 27 stab wounds, and a slit throat.
Prosecutors argued that Arias was calculating and planned Alexander's murder, while the defense has adamantly denied that and has been putting people on the stand to paint a different picture.
"I don't' know that I can say he didn't want to be alone with her, but he liked that when I was there, and my sister was there," Freeman testified. "They weren't as physical."
Intimacy has played a huge role in the trial thus far; both Alexander and Arias sent nude photographs to one another, and police found several nude photos at the crime scene. According to the defense, Alexander kept his relationship with Arias a secret because of his religious beliefs.
Alexander was baptized into the Mormon Church, and Arias later converted in order to continue her relationship with him. Had the Church found out about their sexual relationship, both would have had to "go to a discipline council and face excommunication or a probation period," Freeman, also a Mormon, testified.
If Arias is convicted of murder, she will likely face the death penalty.