Jodi Arias pleads for life in prison, regrets murdering boyfriend
Jodi Arias pleaded with the eight men and four women who found her guilty of first-degree murder today to give her life in prison.
Arias said she "lacked perspective" when she told a local reporter in an interview that she preferred execution to spending the rest of her days in jail.
Standing confidently but at times her voice breaking, she told the jurors that she planned to use her time in prison to bring about positive changes, including donating her hair to be made into wigs for cancer victims, helping to recycle trash and designing T-shirts that would raise money for victims of domestic abuse.
Arias admitted to killing boyfriend Travis Alexander and said it was the "worst thing" she had ever done.
Arias acknowledged the pain and suffering she caused Alexander's family, and said she hoped her conviction brought them peace.
"I loved Travis, and I looked up to him," Arias said. "At one point, he was the world to me. This is the worst mistake of my life. It's the worst thing I've ever done."
She said she considered suicide, but didn't kill herself after Alexander's death because of her love for her own family.
Alexander's family sobbed throughout her speech as Arias' mother and father looked on from the other side of the gallery.
After she finished speaking, the judge told jurors they can consider a handful of factors when deciding what sentence to recommend, including the fact that Arias has no previous criminal record.
They also can weigh defense assertions that Arias is a good friend and a talented artist.
Judge Sherry Stephens also explained to jurors that their decision would be final, emphasising the fact that Arias' life is literally in their hands.
"You will determine whether the defendant will be sentenced to life in prison or death," Stephens told the panel. "Your decision is not a recommendation."
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