The Jodi Arias murder trial seems to be dragging on almost as long as the Fifty Shades of Grey casting wars, and now it’s taken a much more bizarre turn. Belligerent prosecutor and celebrity wannabe Juan Martinez bullied defense expert witness Alyce LaViolette, not only by trying to cast doubt on her credentials, but also by grilling her about Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. That’s not a misprint. Apparently Martinez’s motto is: If all else fails, resort to fairy tales.
For those whose command of late twentieth century California history is spotty or nonexistent, there was once an even more famous murder case in which an ex-cop named Dan White killed San Francisco’s mayor Moscone and gay activist supervisor Harvey Milk. White was sentenced to only seven years in prison, and he served only five. His slap on the wrist was engineered by what came to be known as the “Twinkie Defense.” In other words, he ate so much sugarÂ—including but not limited to Hostess TwinkiesÂ—that he went literally fruitloops. The inane Twinkie drivel saved his life. Similarly, Martinez thinks he can put Arias to death by frothing at the mouth about a fictional female and seven little people. Good grief.
When trying to “force LaViolette to answer questions with yes or no answers,” and raising his voice to a menacing rant failed to intimidate her, Martinez, growing angrier by the second, initiated a bizarre argument about whether “Snow White lived sadly in a shack or happily in a pleasant English cottage.” The nearly apoplectic prosecutor was trying to rattle LaViolette by ridiculing a presentation she gives at conferences called “Was Snow White a Battered Woman?” LaViolette described the title as simply “catchy.” But Martinez tried to make her a laughing stock by implying that LaViolette somehow sees all womenÂ—even fairy tale heroinesÂ—as more or less “abused.” Ironically, Juan only succeeded in making himself look like a jerk. When LaViolette refused to be intimidated and asked him calmly if he was angry at her, the courtroom burst into laughter. It’s a pity they didn’t applaud. If they had, even a thick-headed egotist like Martinez might have backed off and behaved in a more professional manner. Fortunately, for Team Arias, he did not. He just got angrier and yelled louder. The next time Martinez poses for photos with his fans behind the courthouse, perhaps he should sign his autographs “Grumpy.” Although he’s somewhat taller, it suits him.
The sad thing about all these absurd histrionics is that a woman’s life hangs in the balance. Hopefully, Martinez’s outburst will backfire and damage his credibiltyÂ—not LaViolette’s. Hopefully, Jodi Arias will, at the very last, avoid the death penalty which, despite the media’s best efforts to portray her as a soulless, homicidal monster, she does not deserve.
Photo Source: ABC News
Â© Hope Carson 2013