A key expert witness for murder defendant Jodi Arias admitted Monday under cross examination that she wrote a manifesto behind bars.
Prosecutor Juan Martinez mentioned the alleged manifesto for the first time Monday, stunning a packed courtroom audience.
"Do you remember when the defendant was in jail up in Yreka, [California] and the defendant’s manifesto ... Do you remember that was in your notes?" Martinez asked Psychotherapist Alyce LaViolette.
"I remember hearing about it [but] I've never seen it," she replied.
"Isn't it true that the defendant was signing or autographing copies of the manifesto?" asked Martinez.
"I believe those were my notes," LaViolette said.
Martinez interjected that Arias' writing of a manifesto appears to go against the idea that she lacks self-esteem – something LaViolette previously testified to. The domestic violence expert disagreed with his assumption.
"No, I don't think it does at all ... She may think she's a good writer ... but it doesn't mean [she has] high self-esteem," LaViolette said.
Martinez pointed out that Arias had asked someone to print out copies of the manifesto because she wanted them signed "in case ... she became famous."
The manifesto attributed to Arias was not entered into evidence Monday. The contents of it remain unclear. The Huffington Post has filed an official request with the prosecutor's office for a copy of the manifesto, but an official there said it could take some time for the request to be approved.
"In light of the prosecutor's ethical duties under ER 3.6, the State is seeking guidance from the Court on the nature and degree to which future public records requests could or should be fulfilled for the duration of the trial. Accordingly, the County Attorney's Office will cease fulfilling public records requests for materials in this case until such determination is made. While County Attorney Bill Montgomery fully respects the fundamental rights of a free press in our community, he is equally compelled to ensure a fair trial for Ms. Arias and any other defendant in similar circumstances. We'll follow up with you when we get a ruling and let you know what we’re able to release," Maricopa County Attorney's Office spokesman Jerry Cobb told HuffPost.
Martinez has been questioning LaViolette since Thursday, when the defense ended their direct examination of her. While testifying for the defense she said it was her opinion that Arias was physically and emotionally battered by Travis Alexander and feared for her life when she killed him.
LaViolette's finding challenges the prosecution's contention that Arias, 32, acted with premeditation when she killed Alexander.
The defense contends Arias, emotionally and physically battered and afraid for her life, killed in self-defense and did not plan to shoot Alexander in the head, stab him almost 30 times and cut his throat from ear to ear in his Mesa, Ariz., home in 2008.
For the prosecution, proving Arias' intent is key to sustaining the first-degree murder charge. Arias, jealous of Alexander's interest in other women, attacked him in the bathroom of his home after the couple spent the afternoon having sex, according to the prosecution.
During cross-examination Monday, Martinez repeatedly questioned LaViolette about her methods for determining Arias was a victim of domestic violence. He also pointed out Arias thinks she is as smart as Albert Einstein.
"So the fact that the defendant was happy to have her IQ tested because she believed she's on the level of Einstein, doesn't indicate to you this individual does not suffer from a low self-esteem issue?" Martinez asked.
"Most people who talk about how smart they are don't feel that they are that smart.... So, there could be a number of reasons why she was excited about that. I don't know, I wasn't there," LaViolette replied.
"The bottom line is you had it in your notes ... and, you're saying that, well, all these other people have these reasons why they want to know what their IQ is, you don't know why that's why the defendant wanted to know about her IQ right?" asked Martinez.
"No I don't," said LaViolette.
The trial is scheduled to resume at 12:30 p.m. Eastern time Tuesday, when Martinez will continue his redirect questioning of LaViolette.
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