Prosecution takes aim at witness in Jodi Arias trial

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By Tami Hoey By Tami Hoey

PHOENIX -- Jurors returned to Maricopa County Superior Court on Monday after a three-day weekend to hear continuing testimony in the sentencing retrial of convicted murderer Jodi Arias.

Jurors got Friday off after prosecutor Juan Martinez attacked testimony from a defense witness and claimed that Arias is a well-documented liar the previous day.

Defense attorneys are trying to establish that Arias was the victim of domestic violence and should not be put to death for the murder of her former boyfriend.

Defense witness psychologist Robert Geffner was back on the witness stand and under cross examination from prosecutor Juan Martinez, who was pulling out all the shots to discredit him.

Geffner has spent days talking about Arias' mental illness.

At one point, things got heated when Martinez and Geffner went back and forth arguing about domestic violence and the difference between a "shove" and a "push."

Martinez is flat out calling Arias a professional liar.

"'Don't believe a word out of Jodi Arias's mouth' is basically what he is saying about the trauma she experienced - the PTSD that she has now been diagnosed as having," said legal analyst Beth Karas. "It's Martinez's position that this is a woman who will lie when it's convenient."

Geffner has to be in California on Tuesday and the judge wants to finish up his testimony, so court could be in session until 8 p.m.

The retrial was supposed to be over last month but it looks like this case could run through March, especially if Arias herself gets back on the witness stand.

Arias, who was convicted of first-degree murder in the death of her ex-lover Travis Alexander, is fighting for her life as this jury determines whether she should spend the rest of her life in prison or should be executed.

The jury that convicted Arias on May 8, 2013, was unable to reach a verdict in her sentencing, and Stephens declared a mistrial May 23, 2013.

The body of 30-year-old Alexander was found in his Mesa apartment. He had been stabbed, his throat was slit and he had a gunshot wound to his forehead.

Arias, who initially denied she killed Alexander, would eventually admit that she killed him in self-defense, but jurors didn't buy into that claim.

Members of the current jury, which was selected from more than 400 potential jurors over several weeks, have been shown graphic photos of the crime scene, listened to interrogation tapes in which Arias produced a number of lies and had a juror dismissed for asking a woman journalist in attendance if she was TV journalist Nancy Grace, since the retrial began Oct. 21.

The trial, which has generated an online and cable news audience nationwide, is expected to last through January, Stephens said last week.