Jodi Arias ended years of speculation about her defense Wednesday when she testified about the slaying of her ex-boyfriend, Travis Alexander.
In her dramatic testimony, Arias was not as forthcoming with the details as some would have liked. The 32-year-old photographer said she remembers "almost nothing" about June 4, 2008, the day she killed Alexander in his Mesa, Ariz., apartment.
Testifying in a generally calm tone with moments of emotion and tears, Arias said under direct examination by her defense attorney that an argument about Alexander's camera sparked a fight that resulted in his death. She said that Alexander became enraged and body slammed her to the floor because she had dropped his camera while taking pictures of him the shower.
"It was like mortal terror. I pissed him off the worst I'd ever seen him pissed off," Arias said.
She said she ran to a nearby closet to escape Alexander. "I was scared ... He's freaking out. I'm freaking out ... I could hear his footsteps chasing me. I didn't want him to grab me again," she said.
Arias said she took a gun Alexander had in his closet so that she could protect herself. "He ran chasing me. I turned around and pointed it at him so he would stop chasing me," she said.
"I thought [pointing the gun at him] would stop him," Arias continued.. "He grabbed my waist. The gun went off. I did not mean to shoot him or anything. ... I didn't even know I shot him."
Alexander's body was found with 27 stab wounds and his throat had been slashed from ear to ear, but Arias said she doesn't remember inflicting those wounds.
"I remember I was in the bathroom, I remember dropping the knife and it clinked to the tile and it made a big noise. And I just remember screaming. I don’t remember anything after that," Arias said.
Arias said she might have put the knife in the dishwasher after Alexander was stabbed. She said she then fled Alexander's home and drove into the desert, where she disposed of the handgun.
"I was scared and I couldn't imagine calling 911 and telling them what I had just done," Arias said. "I was scared of what would happen to me."
Following her arrest, Arias said she did not know what to say to police. "I just denied it. I guess I didn’t understand that I could be quiet and not say anything at all," Arias said.
Arias went on to discuss plans she had to commit suicide and interviews she gave to the media, but did not provide any further details of Alexander's murder. Following a brief afternoon recess, her defense attorney, Kurt Nurmi, announced he was done with his direct examination.
Court is expected to resume Thursday morning with prosecutors cross-examining Arias. If convicted, she faces the death penalty.
The Huffington Post will be live blogging Thursday's testimony.
WEDNESDAY'S LIVE BLOG:
02/20/2013 5:40 PM EST
Court is in recess. Testimony will resume Thursday at 12:30 p.m. ET, when prosecutor Juan Martinez will begin his cross examination of Arias. The Huffington Post will live blog tomorrows events. A live blog link can be found tomorrow by visiting the full coverage page, at www.huffingtonpost.com/news/jodi-arias.
02/20/2013 5:37 PM EST
Defense Finished Questioning Arias
Defense attorney Kurt Nurmi has ended his direct examination of Arias.
02/20/2013 5:36 PM EST
Arias said she confessed to killing Alexander in the Spring of 2010.
02/20/2013 5:35 PM EST
Arias On Her Interview
For the second time during the trial defense attorney Kurt Nurmi has asked Arias why she told "Inside Edition" that no jury would ever convict her. Arias repeated earlier testimony, saying she had planned to kill herself before the case went to trial.
02/20/2013 5:26 PM EST
Arias is talking about her 2008 interview with "Inside Edition."
02/20/2013 5:22 PM EST
Back On The Stand
Jodi Arias is taking the stand following the afternoon recess.
02/20/2013 5:01 PM EST
Judge Sherry Stephens has called a recess. The live blog will continue when the trial resumes at 5:20 p.m. ET.
02/20/2013 4:58 PM EST
Thoughts On Arias' Direct Examination By The Defense
02/20/2013 4:51 PM EST
Arias On The Media
Arias said she "sugarcoated" everything she said to the media.
02/20/2013 4:46 PM EST
Arias On Why She Spoke With The Media After Her Arrest
"I wanted people to know I was a normal person ... [I] wanted to show people I was not angry -- [that] I didn't hate [Alexander]."