Jodi Arias sentencing retrial: Judge rejects motion to remove death penalty

Judge Sherry Stephens methodically refuted each of the 17 reasons the Jodi Arias defense team presented to remove the death penalty from this case.

Some, like Prosecutor Juan Martinez signing autographs outside the courthouse during the first trial, she swatted away with little comment.

But the judge devoted more time to a key defense claim: that prosecutors failed to share with the defense team evidence of pornography on Travis Alexander's computer... and deleted it on purpose or because of incompetence.

The judge said the defense had ample information about porn on Alexander's laptop at the time of the first trial but did not pursue it. She said even if Mesa Police blundered with the computer dismissing the death penalty was not an appropriate remedy.

The judge also rejected claims by Arias' lawyers that she couldn't get a fair hearing in this sentencing retrial because witnesses are afraid to testify.

There are ways around that, the judge said, including affidavits and videotaped statements that can be presented in court.
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