Arias trial good for hot dog cart business

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By Jennifer Thomas By Jennifer Thomas

PHOENIX -- On a busy corner in downtown Phoenix, in the shadow of Maricopa County's imposing criminal court complex, Ed the Hotdogger has been dispensing dogs and kraut, sodas and chips for more than four decades.

"I was here when Sandra Day O'Connor was a Superior Court judge," Ed says as he lays a pickle atop a bursting bun stuffed with a Polish sausage and other condiments.

"I was here during the trial of [former governor] Evan Mecham," Ed says pausing for a moment to reflect on the colorful history he has personally witnessed and the people he has known and, in many cases, fed.

"But this one ... may be getting the most attention," Ed says, referring to the latest "big story" now unfolding in the massive court tower behind him.

That "big story," of course, is the tawdry and fatal tale of young lovers Jodi Arias and Travis Alexander.

"People are coming from Colorado and Oregon and New Mexico," Ed says. "Sure it's been good for business."

It has also led to some unusual requests from some of Ed's patrons, like the out-of-town woman who offered Ed $20 if he could get her a seat in the courtroom.

"I can make you a good hot dog," Ed says, "but I don't have that kind of power."