Jodi Arias Trial News: Lawyer Says She's 'Chatty and Smiley' But 'Could Never Do That in Court'

One day after Jodi Arias was sentenced to life in prison without parole, her lawyer, Jennifer Willmott, is speaking about the convicted murderer being really "chatty and smiley", but being in court forced her to refrain from showing that side of her personality.

Willmott is one of two attorneys at Arias' side from the start of her trial for the murder of her on-off boyfriend Travis Alexander in December 2012 until Arias was sentenced on Monday, April 13.

Jodi Arias
Jodi Arias and her attorney Jennifer Willmott at the Maricopa Court on April 13, 2015 |

Wilmott said that in spite of her plea to the court on Monday, where Arias said she viewed the death penalty as a release because then she would be free, Arias was actually afraid of a death sentence.

"I don't know how she feels about dying but it's really what comes before that that's so awful, to be on death row, so yeah, she was afraid of that, she did not want the death penalty," said Willmott to ABC News affiliate KNXV in Phoenix.

Willmott also revealed that her client is coping as best as she can.

"She's focused on her future and what she can do potentially in the future," she said.

The lawyer said that Arias' biggest hope is to be "able to have a contact visit and hug her mom. She hasn't been able to do that in seven years. She'd like to be able to hug her niece."

Willmott, who is a public defender, said that she received death threats throughout the trial and that it came to a point where police had to contact one person to stop harassing her.

She also said that if she were given the chance to do it all over again, she would still represent Arias but would change some tactic they used during the trial, without going into further detail.

"The hard part about that is if you were to see the Jodi that we see, she's very chit chatty and smiley and she's very funny and smart but she could never do that in court because that's completely inappropriate to be in such a serious proceeding," said Willmott. "All she knows how to do is be deadpan serious."

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