Exclusive: Travis Alexander’s best friend on Jodi Arias trial

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by Crystal Cruz

azfamily.com

Posted on February 20, 2013 at 7:01 PM

Updated Wednesday, Feb 20 at 7:20 PM

PHOENIX -- In court on Wednesday, all eyes were on accused boyfriend killer Jodi Arias.

The victim’s best friend, Chris Hughes, is watching Arias' graphic testimony online from his home in Utah.

“I'm just over it, you know. I'm done with the lies. She's already admitted to killing him and she's doing it again with character assassination and all of these ridiculous lies that are unsubstantiated, by the way,” said Hughes.

The courtroom was packed with media, family members and courtroom spectators.

Melissa Whitehurst is a spectator and has been listening closely to Arias describe killing Alexander.

“I just think it's so difficult for them to keep living the same thing over and over and constantly see those photos and now today have to hear from the person that actually killed him has to be difficult,” said Whitehurst.

Several family members, including Alexander’s siblings, are here from California watching the trial.

Hughes realized their stay is expensive and wanted to help them.

“We've had people reach out to us and say 'Hey,' I mean total strangers, people that don't know us or the Alexanders. They said “Look my heart is sick for what this family is going through and they must be financially strapped' and they said 'Look what can I do to help?'" said Hughes.

Hughes has set up a Facebook page in Travis Alexander's honor.

One woman posted on Hughes' Facebook page, "I’m an unemployed single mom but I will send what I can. Love from Seattle."

Not everyone wants to donate.

“I feel like if the family wants to be here it should come out of their own pocket because if you look at Jodi’s family it's kind of the same scenario because no one's giving them money but they're still here supporting their family," Whitehurst said.

Hughes wants the public to know he's the one asking for donations for Alexander’s family.

“They haven't asked for anything. They don't expect anything. This is all a shock and surprise to them,” said Hughes.

As for how much money has been raised, Hughes said he doesn't know.

He turned over all access to the PayPal account to the Alexanders.

“Our hearts are full of gratitude with the people who are donating and praying for people they don’t even know, but that they want to help see justice for our family," Alexander's sister told 3TV via Facebook.

Hughes said his friend is being painted in court as a deviant, something Hughes said Alexander wasn’t.

Instead he told 3TV Alexander was a “normal guy, a really gifted individulal” and further said, “If he were all the things that are being said about him his side (of the courtroom) would be empty. Travis was loved.”

He said it’s important for Alexander’s family to be in court and that’s why Hughes is aking for the public to help financially.

“If you have it in your heart then great. If not, no harm no foul. If anyone feels compelled to give it would be a blessing for not only the Alexander’s but for you as well,” said Hughes.

Those interested in donating can log onto raisingyou.org.

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