Thursday, April 2, 2015

Premeditation- Article III - The Cell Phone

When a perpetrator commits a crime,  they usually need to take multiple actions to cover it up.    And,  because they try to cover it up,  there rarely is a single "smoking gun" piece of evidence which shows guilt beyond all doubt.   For a piece of evidence to be beyond all doubt, any other explanation would be impossible.   There's not much which is impossible in this life,  and that's why guilt is determined by "beyond a reasonable doubt."

After a criminal covers her tracks,  often the only thing left to find is circumstantial evidence. Jodi's supporters seem to think like her. Perhaps that is why they believe that only direct evidence should have been used to convict her. And,  for many their definition of 'direct' evidence is evidence which proves the crime beyond all doubt.   If the only way to get justice were to eliminate all possible alternative explanations,  many criminals would get away with their crimes. Justice would never be served,  and victimization would go on unpunished. 

Because of all the 'possibilities'  associated with an action,  a defendant is always allotted a chance to explain why the actions which seem nefarious,  are not. The defendant does not have to provide proof of innocence.  It's well within her right to allow the jury only to hear the prosecution make the claim the actions were proof of a crime.  The defendant has the right to allow the jury to hear only that which shows she had the means, motive, and opportunity to do the crime.  However,  if the defendant stays quiet,  the only evidence the jury will hear and be able to weigh,  is that on the side of guilt.  The jury cannot make up "possibilities"  on Jodi's behalf.

Plenty of possibilities existed for the actions the prosecution claimed were signs Jodi planned to murder Travis:

The hair: she dyed it to prevent neighbors from recognizing her;  she dyed it for a new guy.

The car: she rented it to hide her presence at Travis' home;  she rented it because hers had problems.

A white car:   she wanted  to blend in at Travis' house;  she wanted  to blend in traffic in case she was speeding.

The cell phone:   she turned it off to avoid detection;  she turned it off because it was almost dead and she lost the charger.

Jodi had a fair chance to provide a reason those seemingly guilty actions were not as the prosecution claimed.  Only Jodi's testimony or other evidence introduced in the court can be used to determine if the State's  allegation was founded.  For example,  Jodi said she did not dye her hair during the trip.  Evidence produced in court showed her hair with blonde streaks and highlights on May 15th.  The rental car agent said her hair was blonde on June 2. And a photo on June 3rd showed Jodi as completely brunette without any blonde streaks and highlights.  That was the evidence.   Jodi never stated "I dyed it for a new guy." The rental agent did not say "She was a platinum blonde." That was not evidence produced in court.  She had the opportunity to say she dyed it on the way to impress Ryan, but she did not.   Instead,  she said, "I did not dye it on that trip."  It was her word against the evidence and the rental agent.   Credibility came into play.

When the case began,  Jodi Arias was presumed innocent.  However,  it did not mean each time she spoke,   the jury had to presume she was telling the truth.  Her testimony was considered 'evidence'  and was subject to the same evaluation for credibility as any other witness' testimony.

  • Did Jodi have the ability to see or know the things she was stating?
    • Yes
  • What was the quality of the Jodi's memory
    • poor except for when it served her 
  • What was Jodi's manner when testifying?
    • Meek, shameful, and mild with the defense.   Defiant and bold during the same type of questioning by the prosecution.
      • She proved aggressiveness when challenged.
      • If Jodi really felt the shame she feigned, it should have shown up during her questioning by the prosecution. A side by side comparison of her pedophile allegation showed two completely different mannerisms between the prosecution questioning and the defense.  The jury noticed.  
  • Did Jodi have any motive to lie?
    • Lying could have resulted in her life being spared and possible freedom.
    • She already tried to lie twice to save her freedom
  • Was Jodi contradicted by anything she wrote before the trial
    • Her journal.
  • Was Jodi contradicted by any other witness?
    • Ryan Burns,  Ralph Columbo,  and even some of her own witness' statements
      • ALV: Jodi told me she shot him in the closet
        • Jodi: I shot him in the bathroom
      • ALV:  Jodi told me she left the knife on the  stand by the bed.
        • Jodi: I don't remember where the knife was.
  • Was Jodi's testimony reasonable in the light of other evidence?
    • No.  In some cases,  Jodi's testimony contradicted itself.
      • Jodi claimed to be safety aware but didn't care about ensuring she had a working cell phone while driving alone, at night, in an unfamiliar car, and in an unknown area.


Jodi's first defense was a denial of being at Travis' house.   If she wasn't there, she couldn't have done it.   In order to reduce the risk of being identified at the scene,  Jodi changed her appearance, she changed her car,  and she removed the license plate.  However, there were other steps she needed to do to avoid detection.   In 2008, it was common knowledge cell phone signals could be tracked when the phone was on.   Even if she didn't make a call,  the cell phone signal could have been tracked.   It made it necessary for Jodi to turn off her cell phone.

Jodi's cell phone was turned off prior to Jodi reaching her alibi route of HWY 15.   In her first defense story, Jodi claimed  she left Pasadena and took HWY 15 North towards Utah.   In order to cover up for the time she was missing,  Jodi said she both got lost and slept along the way. If Jodi left her phone on,  it would have been very easy to show she was lying.  

Eventually,  Jodi had to change her defense story.  She  made mistakes at the crime scene which placed her there beyond all doubt.  Her DNA was found mixed with Travis' blood within a print of her hand left on the wall.   Jodi invented a new story.  She was there  but didn't plan on going.   She claimed her original intent was to take HWY 15 to go to Utah, but Travis talked her into coming to see him instead.  While she was there, masked intruders shot Travis and let her go.  Eventually,  Jodi would change her story a third time.

When Jodi changed her defense for a third time,  she continued to claim she didn't plan to go to Travis' when she set out on the trip.  Per Jodi's story,  while she was in Pasadena,  she started to think about the route she was taking to Utah.  It was HWY 15,  and she was not familiar with it.  Jodi decided to act against her previous plan to save money,  and fill her extra gas cans with the more expensive California gas.   Jodi said she wanted to err on the side of safety because she was "A woman alone, driving an unfamiliar car,  on an unfamiliar route."  She didn't want to get lost, run out of gas, and get stranded.  

In addition to buying the extra gas in Pasadena,  Jodi also turned off her cell phone.   Jodi claimed the phone was nearly out of battery power,  and she couldn't find the charger.  So she turned it off and continued to head towards the unfamiliar route in her unfamiliar car.

Jodi's testimony about her safety concerns and the gas is considered evidence.  However, that evidence was contradictory to her cell phone story.   It meant that one or both statements were not true.

In Jodi's testimony about the extra gas,  she claimed fear of getting lost and then stranded if she ran out of gas.   If Jodi were worried about getting lost,  she would not have proceeded along an unfamiliar route for a 9-hour trip at night without ensuring she had her charger with her.   Jodi recently got a new Helio phone to replace the one she claimed stolen.  The  Helio phones she would have ordered in 2008 came with a GPS.  Jodi's phone was not entered into evidence.  If it were, it would have served as another example for the jury to realize her story was not reasonable.   A person who has fear of getting lost uses their phone GPS to help them out.  A low phone signal and a lack of charger would not have ensured Jodi could have found her way.

Helio Ocean

Helio Heat

Helio Mysto

Helio  Fin

Per her story,  what Jodi was saying was "I am worried about safety,  and getting lost. Nonetheless,  I am not going to make sure the thing that could help me from getting lost would remain functional before I start along the route where I might get lost."

Possible? Yes.  Reasonable? No.

If Jodi were worried about getting lost or stranded,  she would have taken the time to look for her cell phone charger before starting on an unfamiliar route.  If the charger was lost and Jodi searched for it,  she would have found it.  Jodi was driving a compact car that she just rented the day before.   Per her statement,  her luggage was in the trunk.

"I took back the third gas can because there was not enough room in the trunk for three cans and my luggage."

How much clutter could there have been in such a little car she just rented that she could have missed the charger under the front seat?

(interior of a 2008 Ford Focus)

Due to the size of the car and the lack of clutter,  it would have taken Jodi only a few minutes of looking for the charger in order to find it.  And,  if Jodi could have found the charger in the midst of a dark desert,  she could have found the charger much easier on the lighted streets of Pasadena.  When considered as a whole,  Jodi's story is not at all reasonable to believe.

Jodi's version of the cell phone not only did not make sense, but it was also contradicted by another witness.  Ryan Burns stated when Jodi told him about her cell phone dying she said she purchased another charger at a gas station.   However,  in her story on the stand,  Jodi said she found it under the front passenger seat of her car

As a witness,  Ryan would have been measured on credibility just like Jodi was.
  1. Did he have the ability to hear the things he testified to?
    • Yes,  Jodi admitted to calling Ryan that night.
  2. Quality of Ryan's memory?
    • Ryan displayed no signs of a poor memory.  When he was first interviewed, it was only a few months after the conversation happened.
    • Would it be something that Ryan would have remembered?
      • Ryan was very worried about Jodi when she was so late.  One of the things that caused him concern was her phone going straight to voice mail.  The excuse Jodi provided him would have been something he was very likely to remember.
  3. Did Ryan have any bias or motive to lie?
    • Ryan was not Travis' friend;  he only met him once.
    • Ryan was Jodi's friend and was very open about their mutual interest in each other.
    • Ryan did not initially think Jodi had anything to do with the crime.
      • There was no identifiable benefit for Ryan to lie
  4. Was he contradicted by any other witness?
    • Jodi contradicted him; Jodi also contradicted herself.
  5. Did Ryan's story make sense?
    • Yes.   His version fit the evidence and it made sense that after Jodi was missing for such a long time he would have wondered why.

Jodi's version of the cell phone story is not reasonable, and another witness contradicted it.  Even in the light of common sense,  her supporters still believe her story is true just because it is 'possible.'   They refuse to recognize how improbable and unreasonable it is.  Some of Jodi's supporters have tried to defend her cell phone story. They claim the fact the cell phone pinged an Arizona tower when she turned it back on was proof she didn't turn it off to hide her presence in the area.

Yes,  Jodi Arias' phone pinged an Arizona tower.   It pinged it from a location that was 275 miles away from Travis Alexander's house.  A location which could have been supported by her story,  "I drove 100 miles in the wrong direction,  thank you very much."  Jodi's goal was to avoid being detected in the area of Travis' home,  and 275 miles northwest of it isn't considered being "in the area."

At 11:48 pm on June 4th,  six hours after she killed him,  Jodi made a phone call that placed her location about 27 miles South of the Nevada border. The location was 60 miles away from her alibi route of Hwy 15.   The location worked with her story of getting lost.

When Jodi made her call,  it was six hours after Travis' death.  She had to be feeling the pressure to set up her alibi call before his body was discovered by his roommates.  Because of all the time which passed since she left Mesa,   Jodi would have known she was getting close to the Nevada border.  When she made her call,  she was in a remote area surrounded by desert. The signal should have hit the nearest town, which would have been Bolder City, NV.   However,  there were two issues that caused the  signal to hit a tower in Kingman,  AZ instead.   The closest Verizon Wireless tower was North of Bolder City in Vegas and a mountain range was between Jodi and that tower.  Per what Detective Flores told Jodi,  the mountain range caused her signal to deflect back to Kingman, AZ.

The phone call was made six hours after the last photograph at Travis' house.  It only takes 5 hours and 48 minutes to drive from Mesa to Las Vegas.   When Jodi made her call,  she thought she was close enough to Nevada to place her there with the call.  And, if not, her 'alibi' for the Arizona ping was right there in the call: "I drove 100 miles in the wrong direction, thank you very much."

The cell phone is just another piece of circumstantial evidence that when considered as a group, proves Jodi Arias was guilty of the premeditation murder of Travis Alexander.  Jodi had her chance to explain why the cell phone was not as the prosecution claimed,  and her explanation proved to not be reasonable.  Some Jodi supporters believe Jodi guilty of murder,  but feel she was overcharged with murder one.  The cell phone evidence shows they are wrong.  The evidence shows Jodi was lying about her reason for turning off the phone.  Her version is possible  but neither reasonable nor probable. Jodi supporters claim the cell phone evidence not important,  but that is far from fact. It shows Jodi was hiding her presence in Arizona from anyone who could use the signal to track it.  The only people who would do so would be law enforcement which means Jodi had an illegal act planned.   And,  since Travis ended up brutally murdered,  it's obvious what that act was.

For further evidence of premeditation,  see Article I- The Hair,  and Article II - The Rental Car and License Plate.

Jodi Arias will never go free:  The evidence is stacked against her.  Justice was served.


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    1. I was really impressed at your comment. I know you removed it, but it goes to my email once posted. I wanted to post it in the article, giving you credit of course, if it is OK w/ you.

    2. I deleted it because it's clear that you have an exceptional grasp of the evidence in this case (not many people do, including those who believe she's guilty) and probably nothing I said about the gun is new to you. But when you do write the article about the 25, leave no stone unturned. It's the best evidence of premeditation in this case, after the cell phone, and removed tags IMO.

      However, there is one detail that you may not know. Now I'm no ballistics expert, so this theory could be wrong. Back when I did research on this case, I found out that the weight of the slug that was recovered from Alexander's skull is consistent with a 25 caliber expanding point (hollow point) made by Winchester (the shell was identified as a Winchester round).

      From memory, it weighed a little over 44 grains (a 25 caliber HP from Winchester weighs 45 grains -- the slight weight difference can be explained by a small bit of metal being shed upon impact). In contrast, a 25 caliber full metal jacket weighs 50 grains. At the trial, the ballistics expert appears to assume it was a 50 grain FMJ that hit Travis (the bullet was mangled) and she explained this even greater weight discrepancy by saying what I just said previously about metal being shed upon impact. But what if the real explanation for the weight discrepancy is that the bullet was not a FMJ? But an HP like the bullets described in the police report? I did further research and found out that hollow points act like regular FMJs (they don't mushroom) if they hit bone almost immediately (like hitting the forehead). And with the increased velocity (less weight means faster bullet), this could explain the remarkable penetrating capacity of the bullet that struck Travis.

      Of course, Jodi may have switched the bullets or the grandfather could be mistaken, but doesn't it seem like an unlikely coincidence that a 50 grain FMJ would reduce its weight to the consistency of a Winchester HP, just like the bullets described in the police report? Also note that Dr Horn reported finding no bullet fragments in the skull or brain. Kind of odd if the FMJ shed 5 grains of its metal.

      If it was an HP, then that's more evidence that Jodi stole her grandfather's 25.

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  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

    1. mom4902, I think the only way I can answer your comment is by posting under you deleted one. I wasn't quite sure what you meant by the Iphone jacking up the comment. It looked great in my email. Unless you meant it was because it showed up under the cell phone article instead of the one about the broken finger. ANyhow, please do repost as you suggested.

  4. From a friend:

    "I decided to score her blog post, out of 100%. Subtract 50% for technical inaccuracy as this information was plagiarized. Subtract 25% for intentional malicious bias. Subtract 25% for failure to provide sources and failure to provide technical details on codecs and licensing per device / manufacturer. We know the codecs are licensed from Steinberg (MP3), AAC (Apple Computer) H.264 and MPG4 (Sorenson Audio/Video). Each would have separate licensing numbers associated with each device (Helio Ocean and Digital Recorder). Overall I gave her a score of 0%. The entire article was designed to convince 'haters' that Jodi was a liar but in fact it is the author of this article who is both an intellectual property thief and liar (intentionally misleading and confirmation bias). Yep, Good job Debbie. NOT."

    1. I think you posted this on the wrong article --- you wanted the Helio Ocean article where the information is located at that makes it understandable why it was not necessary to post any codecs.

      For example, The Helio Ocean manual -- that inaccurate source your "friend" refers to -- indicates that the Helio Ocean can only record up to three minutes at a time. The recording played in court had parts which lasted longer without interruption than three minutes at a time. page 34.... And Arias said the recording was made with the Helio and Bryan Neumeister stated the defense team took the recording off of the Helio phone. Now, it doesn't take the posting of codecs to make it clear that in order to get a longer-than-3-minute phone recording on the Helio phone, the recording had to be first done with another device and then sent to the Helio phone. But, we will have to notify the Helio folks that your "friend" said their manuals are an "inaccurate" description of how their phone works.

      Wow... I just realized something. This is what, like number 10 post you have made to imply some sort of information is not factual but not threatening to Jodi's claim of innocence so not worth acknowledging. And, I haven't posted a comment on your blog once yet. I shouldn't be so rude since you have read so much of my stuff and posted. Sorry about that.


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