Did Brother Of Jodi Arias' Ex-Boyfriend Use His Identity In Battery Case?

03/11/2013 10:30 pm ET | Updated Mar 12, 2013
  • David Lohr Senior Crime Reporter, The Huffington Post

Travis Alexander, the ex-boyfriend Jodi Arias is charged with murdering, was convicted of 2002 theft and misdemeanor battery charges, according to court documents. However, Alexander's brother says he was the one who actually committed the crime.

UPDATE: According to Jane Velez-Mitchell, Travis Alexander spoke of being a victim of identity fraud when he worked as a motivational speaker.

"It's something that I am ashamed of," Dennis Gregory Alexander told The Huffington Post. "I have been clean for almost 10 years and it's something Travis forgave me for a long time ago. He was a righteous guy and he never did anything wrong. It was all me. It was my doing. Travis was a gentleman. The furthest thing he would ever do is any sort of crime."

The charges, noted in California court documents obtained by The Huffington Post, accuse Travis Alexander of assaulting a store security guard in 2002, six years before he was slain in his Mesa, Ariz., home. Alexander was eventually convicted of the charges and sentenced to probation, according to his lawyer.

A key element of Arias’ murder defense has been her claim that Alexander was abusive. No evidence has been presented in the trial that suggests Alexander had any criminal history.

Arias, 32, is accused of shooting Alexander in the head, stabbing him 27 times and cutting his throat from ear to ear on June 4, 2008. She claims the killing was self-defense and could face the death penalty if convicted. The prosecution contends that Arias killed Alexander in a jealous rage.

Travis Alexander was 24 when he was charged with shoplifting and scuffling with a security guard at a Stater Brothers supermarket in his hometown of Riverside, Calif., in March 2002. Alexander was 30 when he was killed.

Alexander “did willfully and unlawfully steal and take personal merchandise” valued at less than $400 from the merchant, according to the criminal complaint filed in Superior Court of California. He "wilfully and unlawfully use[d] force and violence" against a man named Fred Lopez, according to the complaint.

Lopez worked for Stater Brothers at the time, a store spokesperson said. He hasn't worked there in about 10 years and efforts by HuffPost to contact him were unsuccessful.

The public defender who represented Alexander had incomplete records from the case, but recalled that Alexander got caught trying to steal an item valued at less than $50. Lopez tried to stop Alexander, and a physical altercation ensued, lawyer Debra Rice said.

"It looks like he was convicted of both of them -- the battery and the shoplifting," Rice told The Huffington Post. "That was 11 years ago, so I really don't remember much other than what I am looking up" in computer records. Rice added, "It looks like he shoplifted something and Lopez tried to stop him from taking it. It was a felony battery when he was arrested, and then it was filed [in court] as a misdemeanor."

Alexander was sentenced to three years' probation. Court documents said Alexander failed to comply with a court order in March 2002 to submit a financial disclosure form to the court.

Grover Trask, the former district attorney who prosecuted the case in Riverside, said he was unable to remember any details.

However, according to Travis Alexander's brother, he was the one who actually committed the crime.

Travis Alexander's brother, Dennis Alexander, told HuffPost that Travis Alexander was not involved in the theft and battery. Dennis Alexander said he committed the crime and falsely identified himself to arresting police officers as Travis Alexander and passed himself off in court as his brother.

"That was a time in my life when I was addicted to drugs and was a real mess," Dennis Alexander said. "I was stealing Sudafed, an ingredient in manufacturing methamphetamines."

Dennis Alexander said he was attempting to leave the store when he was approached by a security guard. "They tackled me and beat me up pretty good," he said. "I was already on parole and would have went to prison, so I used Travis' name and information. When they arrested me, they fingerprinted me and put it in the computer and found out who I was. They sent me to prison for a parole violation."

The court documents and Rice's public defender records indicate the case made it through court in Travis Alexander's name.

READ THE COURT DOCUMENTS: (Story Continues Below)
Travis Alexander Arrest Court Documents

Dennis Alexander maintained the records are incorrect.

"No, I never went to court on that," he said. "I figured they ran it concurrent, because I did a 12-month violation on that. I assumed that his name would have been cleared. It apparently stayed under his name."

Dennis Alexander said he tried to get a copy of the original booking photo Monday to prove it was him, but said police would not give him a copy. "They said they would release it to the prosecution," he said.

Jerry Cobb, the public information officer for the Maricopa County Attorney's Office, which is prosecuting Arias, said his office had no information on the shoplifting or battery case.

"We wouldn't have any information like that," Cobb said. "Travis Alexander's not accused of anything. He's a victim in our case and it's not something I'm familiar with."

READ THE UPDATE: Police Checking If Brother Was Actually In Custody

Editors Note: Updated for clarification

Related on HuffPost:

Jodi Arias Timeline

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