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Who`s Winning War of Words in Jodi Arias Trial?

Aired February 22, 2013 - 19:00   ET


JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL, HOST: Tonight, who is winning the epic war of words in the Jodi Arias courtroom? Fireworks and fights between the prosecutor and the woman who admits she slit Travis Alexander`s throat but says she doesn`t remember doing it because she blacked out.


VELEZ-MITCHELL (voice-over): Tonight who won round one...


VELEZ-MITCHELL: ... between accused murderer Jodi Arias and fiery prosecutor Juan Martinez. He`s on the attack, yelling, punching holes in Jodi`s claims that she blacked out and can`t remember stabbing Travis to death.

But a confident Jodi fires zingers right back at prosecutors, saying she forgets things "when men like you are yelling at me." Is Jodi too snarky on the stand? Is the prosecutor`s anger out of control?

Plus, Pop Rocks and Tootsie Pops. Part of Travis and Jodi`s kinky sex play. What does it all mean? And why a friend says Travis went to target practice but did not own his own gun. We`ll debate who`s winning with our expert panel.

JODI ARIAS, MURDER DEFENDANT: It`s commanded of us to forgive all people.

JUAN MARTINEZ, PROSECUTOR: She`s a little bit dumb. You said that, right?

ARIAS: Yes. I called her dumb and stupid.

MARTINEZ: Did I ask you whether or not you called her stupid, ma`am?

You can tell us, for example, what type of sex you had with Mr. Alexander many years ago, but you`re having trouble telling us what you said a couple of days ago?

ARIAS: If I hurt Travis and if I killed Travis, I would beg for the death penalty.

I have no memory of stabbing him. I just remember trying to get away from him.

MARTINEZ: Your problems with your memory, is it a recent vintage?

ARIAS: Define recent.

MARTINEZ: I don`t know, since you started testifying.

So you did enjoy sex, then, is that what you`re telling me?

ARIAS: At times I did.

MARTINEZ: What factors influence your having a memory problem?

ARIAS: Usually when men like you are screaming at me or grilling me or someone like Travis doing the same.

I don`t remember doing anything like that.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Tonight, showdown in the Jodi Arias courtroom, the prosecutor hell-bent on showing Jodi`s claims that she can`t remember slashing Travis Alexander to death is B.S., convenient amnesia to avoid being grilled on the 29 times she stabbed him. But will the jury buy Jodi`s blackout?

Good evening. I`m Jane Velez-Mitchell.

The beautiful 32-year-old photographer is accused of repeatedly stabbing her girlfriend, slitting Travis Alexander`s throat from ear to ear and shooting him in the face after an afternoon of kinky sex.

Jodi has now spent nine days on the stand but only minutes describing the little she says she remembers of the bloody, violent killing of Travis. Listen to this.


ARIAS: He lifted me up as he was screaming that I was a stupid idiot, and he body-slammed me again on the tile. And I began to run down the hallway and I could hear following -- I could hear his footsteps chasing me.

I remembered where he kept the gun so I grabbed it, and he go got -- like a linebacker, he got kind of low and grabbed my waist, but before he did that, as he was lunging at me, it went off. I didn`t mean to shoot him or anything. I didn`t even think I was holding the trigger.

He said, "I`ll (EXPLETIVE DELETED) kill you, (EXPLETIVE DELETED)." There was, like, a huge gap. I don`t know if I blacked out or what. There`s a huge gap.

KIRK NURMI, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Do you remember stabbing Travis Alexander?

ARIAS: I have no memory of stabbing him.

NURMI: Do you remember dragging him across the floor?


NURMI: Do you remember placing him in the shower?

ARIAS: I`m sorry. That`s no. I remember dropping the knife, and it clanged on the tile and made a big noise, and I just remember screaming.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: We listened for days to Jodi remembering everything from gas prices to drinks she ordered, but when it was time to talk about stabbing Travis Alexander 29 times and dragging his body into the shower, oops, she can`t remember a thing. The prosecution called her out on her suspicious memory loss. Listen to this.


MARTINEZ: The problems with your memory, is it a recent vintage?

ARIAS: Define recent.

MARTINEZ: I don`t know. Since you started testifying.

ARIAS: It depends on the type of memory issue.

MARTINEZ: If it benefits you, you have a memory issue? What factors influence your having a memory problem?

ARIAS: Usually when men like you are screaming at me or grilling me or someone like Travis doing the same.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Ooh! Let`s start our debate with our expert panel, half for the prosecution, half for the defense. The question: is Jodi Arias winning this battle of wits on the stand? Will she convince the jury she killed in self-defense? Or will the prosecution prove she`s a pathological liar who slaughtered Travis in revenge for refusing to consider her as a serious life partner? Who is winning?

We begin with former prosecutor Fred Tecce.

FRED TECCE, FORMER PROSECUTOR: "Screaming at me. Screaming at me." Those words are going to bury her. Her memory was horrible. I thought the cross-examination scored a lot of points. And as far as I`m concerned, the only thing she`s earning for herself at this point is a blindfold and a cigarette.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Anahita Sedaghatfar, for the defense.

ANAHITA SEDAGHATFAR, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: I thought it was another great day for the defense yesterday. Clearly, she was well prepared. She was methodical in her responses. And Jane, there were a couple of times when she tripped up the prosecutor.

And I think the prosecutor, yes, he`s a skilled attorney. He`s a great trial attorney, but he is being way too aggressive out of the gate. And he runs a serious risk of alienating those jurors, and this could end up backfiring on him. So I think he needs to seriously consider taking a step back on Monday and not attacking the witness.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Jon Lieberman.

JON LIEBERMAN, HLN CONTRIBUTOR: First of all, the jury got to see how assertive Jodi can be, that she`s not some cowering, battered woman, which I think was part of Mr. Martinez` plan with being so aggressive.

But let`s not forget the facts that continue to come out, the lies. Mr. Martinez is doing one thing, and that is continuing to bring out lies.

About the finger, for example. He pointed out that now she has two to three different stories about how her finger was hurt, just like she had three different stories about the murder.


LIEBERMAN: And one thing quickly, Jane. She`s admitted to the killing. She`s admitted to getting rid of the gun. She`s admitted now or he`s trying to get her to admit to witness tampering. There`s not much else she can admit to.


RENE SANDLER, ATTORNEY: Round one, Arias. She won the first round against this prosecutor. The prosecutor took the bait. He went for the minutia rather than big points in terms of lying to the police. Things that would really score points with that jury. He took the bait. Jodi Arias wins the first round.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: One of the most heated exchanges between Jodi and prosecutor Juan Martinez was all about kinky sex with candy. Who knew?

But seriously, prosecutor Juan Martinez and Jodi spent several minutes sparring over Pop Rocks and Tootsie Pops. Yes, apparently, they`re used as sex toys. You do the math.

Juan demanded to know whether Jodi had a good time during her candy- coated sex games with Travis. Listen.


MARTINEZ: You enjoyed the Tootsie Pops and the Pop Rocks, correct?

ARIAS: I enjoyed his attention.

MARTINEZ: No. I want to know if you enjoyed the Tootsie Pops and the Pop Rocks. In your view, you can go through an act and not enjoy it but also enjoy it. What are you trying to say?

ARIAS: Am I allowed to tell you what I`m trying to say?

MARTINEZ: I want to know whether or not you enjoyed it.

This encounter that we`ve been calling Lonnie`s baptism, there were some Pop Rocks and Tootsie Pops that were involved, right?

ARIAS: No. Lonnie`s baptism did not involve Tootsie Pops and Pop Rocks.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: I will say, sometimes I lost track of the point because of the unintentional hilarity of the sparring. Was this the best way to try to make the point that Jodi enjoyed the sex games with Travis and only painted them as degrading, humiliating and abusive when she was accused of murder and needed something to hang her self-defense claim on. And we`ll start with Anahita on that.

SEDAGHATFAR: You heard the sex tape, didn`t you? How can anyone argue that telling your girlfriend that she sounds like a 12-year-old girl having an orgasm and that`s hot, and that he fantasizes about tying her up to a tree and having anal sex with her and that he wants her to feel raped and enjoy it. How can anyone argue that that is not sexual domination?

Her argument here is self-defense. She`s arguing she was sexually abused, sexually degraded. This ties into her argument that she was a victim, a battered woman, a victim of domestic violence.


TECCE: No. First of all, here`s a lot of problems with that. There`s absolutely no evidence that supports this. A lot of her claims were not backed up by her -- by her diary, and her story changed over time, and I`m sorry.

SEDAGHATFAR: It`s evidence. Her testimony is evidence.

TECCE: You know what? It is evidence, but it`s not good evidence and it`s evidence of a lie.

Here`s the problem. If she really was battered, if that`s why she killed him, she should have gone to the police and she should have been on the witness stand for 90 minutes saying, "This is a terrible, terrible tragedy. I`m sorry I killed the guy, but this is what he did to me." Not run the guy down for nine days and then tell the jury, "Oh, by the way, I forget about the murder."

So you know what? None of her testimony, none of her conduct is consistent with a woman who was battered. I`m sorry.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Rene.

LIEBERMAN: She is a liar. She is a liar.

SANDLER: She absolutely is consistent.

LIEBERMAN: Thank you. Thank you.

SANDLER: It is consistent with somebody who`s been battered and abused. The lack of memory during this event is consistent with someone who has suffered continuous abuse.

So it`s all relevant. It`s all consistent. And it`s fitting perfectly into the defense theory.

TECCE: She remembers erasing the camera. Does she remember putting the camera in the dishwasher. Obviously, she remembers lying and having nothing to do with it until the police found the camera and got the pictures that she thought she erased. I`m sorry. Not a single step.

SANDLER: She was frozen (ph). Absolutely.


TECCE: We haven`t even started to talk about her efforts -- we haven`t even started to talk about her efforts to try and get someone to lie and perjure herself, which was the most scalding cross-examination I`ve seen in years.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes! What you are talking about is one of the biggest stunners so far in the case.

The prosecutor suddenly revealed that Jodi, while she`s in jail, was writing secret messages about her defense to a friend. Messages scribbled in magazines that she tried to literally smuggle out of jail. The prosecutor forced Jodi to read her secret messages out loud.


MARTINEZ: On this page No. 20 it says -- read it for me.

ARIAS: "You testify so" -- it looks like it says "we can fix this." Looks like it says, "Directly contradicts what I`ve been saying for over a year."

It says, "You (EXPLETIVE DELETED) up what you told my attorney the other -- the next day. The interview was excellent. Must talk ASAP. Get down here ASAP and see me before you talk to them again and before."


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Shanna Hogan, you`re writing a book, "Picture Perfect," on this case. What do you make of these secret messages written -- you can see it right there. Tell us.

SHANNA HOGAN, AUTHOR (via phone): Yes. That was one of the most shocking moments in court. We`ve known about this for a while. She communicated with her boyfriend, Matthew McCartney, through jail and he was involved in creating these letters that were later proven to be forgeries. And that was the only substantial evidence that was given to produce her -- to back up her statement.

So when he gave his first interview to the attorneys, he gave a very different story. And Jodi needed him back into the jail to talk about her version of events so he could come back and support her claim. So it was - - it was basically her soliciting false testimony from behind bars.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Wow! And by the way, Matt McCartney, and I don`t know whether he was involved in any kind of forgery. He`s always invited on our show. We`d love to have him on to give his side of the story and weigh in.

On the other side, more debate, more shocking testimony. Unbelievable stuff.


MARTINEZ: "I write right now that I love Travis Victor Alexander so completely that I don`t know any other way to be."

ARIAS: He was trying to court me back.

MARTINEZ: The reason you confronted him back in August of 2007 was because you were in love with him, and you didn`t want to let him go.

ARIAS: But I was in love with him.




ARIAS: Picked it up, and he flung it at the wall and it ricocheted off the wall and rolled onto the -- off the desk and landed on my head and hit the carpet. I was going to apologize, and he had stood up and the chair got pushed to the side. And he spun me around and then bent me over the desk and pressed up against me. He grabbed both of my arms and spun me around and then grabbed my right arm and twisted it behind my back.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: So there`s Jodi claiming just a little while before the killing occurs she drops a CD. And she claims Travis flipped out and then ultimately had sex with her, like rough sex against her will, sort of, maybe. She was just enduring it because she didn`t want him to be violent.

I want to bring in Dr. Jenn Berman, psychotherapist. And you`ve counseled victims of domestic violence. Do her stories ring true?

DR. JENN BERMAN, PSYCHOTHERAPIST: No, and I desperately want to believe her. As someone who has been an advocate for victims of domestic violence, I really -- I want to believe what she`s saying, but I just don`t. It`s so inconsistent.

Her diary doesn`t show that this was a woman who lived in fear. It doesn`t explore a long history of this sort of cycle of violence. So I have a really hard time believing it. That combined with all of these lies she`s told to cover up, it just is so hard to believe her.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Yes, and the idea that -- I kind of take offense as a woman. Any time she describes a sexual encounter it`s like it`s degrading. And there were some very degrading things that were said during the phone sex call and the texting. But is it possible -- I think I know the answer to this question -- to experience degrading sex and enjoy it a heck of a lot, Dr. Jenn?

BERMAN: Absolutely. And that`s what the book "Shades of Grey" is all about, and it`s one of the most popular books on the market right now. And I think that that kind of sex has become very mainstream.

I have a show called "The Love and Sex Show with Dr. Jenn" on Cosmo Radio. People call in all the time. They talk about bondage. They talk about rough sex. And these are people behind white-picket fences. This has become very mainstream, and I think that she`s re-writing history now.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: That`s an interesting way to put it.

Dave Hall, Travis`s good friend, told me Travis did not own a gun. Remember, she claims, oh, she grabbed his gun. He says -- Dave says he knows this, because Travis always borrowed his gun when they went to target practice together. This is exclusive video that Dave gave us, showing Travis` use of a gun at a shooting range.

Jodi testified she accidentally shot Travis with a gun that Travis owned and kept in a secret hiding place in his home. Listen.


ARIAS: So I ran into the closet and I slammed the door, and I remembered where he kept a gun. So I grabbed it. I jumped up on the shelf; he kept it on the very top. I grabbed it.

And then I ran out the other door as he was opening the door. And he ran chasing me, and I turned around and pointed it at him so that he would stop chasing me.

It was up here in the corner.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: I want to bring in Dave Hall, a good friend of the victim, Travis Alexander. This whole idea that Travis was chasing Jodi, and she ran into the closet and just grabbed a gun like that, from the top shelf, flying up there like Catwoman. I was actually trying to get something from a shelf this morning, and it took me a couple of minutes. And I was like, "Wait a second. You don`t just fly up and grab something."

DAVE HALL, FRIEND OF TRAVIS: Yes, you`re right. And if you had a map of his bedroom and his bathroom, you could see that she says she was running down the hallway, and she could hear Travis` steps behind her. When she gets to the end of the tile, she has a choice. You could turn left and exit the bedroom, go down the stairs and out onto the street, or you can turn right and go back into the closet where the gun is.

All she had to do at that point was turn left and leave the house and not have this situation, but she didn`t. She turned right and stayed in the house.

Obviously, her story is a complete fabrication of lies, but it just goes to show that there was no gun. Her story is a bunch of garbage.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Or if the gun was there -- well, there was a gun, because she shot him, and she admits that she shot him.

Police believe she staged a burglary at her grandparents` house about a week before the killing. And what was mysteriously stolen? A gun which is the same caliber as the gun used to kill Travis Alexander, a gun that has never been recovered.

On the other side, we`re taking your calls. More debate, more key testimony. Stay right there.


MARTINEZ: What factors influence your having a memory problem?

ARIAS: Usually when men like you are screaming at me or grilling me or someone like Travis doing the same.

MARTINEZ: So that affects your memory problem, right?

ARIAS: It does. It makes my brain scramble.




ARIAS: And at this point, I realized I was in really deep trouble, and I started thinking of what I could do to delay the inevitable.

NURMI: Why not just dial 911 and tell them what happened?

ARIAS: I was scared, and I couldn`t imagine calling 911 and telling them what I had just done. I knew I had messed up pretty badly. That`s not something that I could really run from.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Jodi told the jury she was upset and wanted to die when she realized Travis was dead after coming out of her blackout in the middle of the desert, but instead of calling 911, she decided to bury those feelings and drive to Utah to visit another man, Ryan Burns and then make out with him -- yes, canoodle -- which she says she did because she wanted to make it appear like nothing was wrong.

Will the jury buy this explanation of her seemingly cold-hearted kissing session with another guy just hours after she kills Travis? Let`s bring in the panel, starting with Fred Tecce.

TECCE: No. I think it`s just more of the same kind of lies and manipulation.

I mean, I think the theory of the prosecution has to be -- it`s consistent. It`s that every step that this woman has taken has been a lie and manipulation.

I mean, you look at those pictures of her with gorgeous, blond hair and then you look at her on the witness stand, and she`s changed her appearance to try and lie and manipulate this.

And look, being battered and being abused is a very dangerous and very serious problem in this country. What I find appalling and quite frankly, repugnant, is this woman is trying to use it as a get-out-of-jail-free card for murdering -- brutally murdering a man.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Anahita?

SEDAGHATFAR: I disagree. I`ve said all along, Jane, that a lot -- big part of the trial is going to be the expert testimony. And be assured that that defense is going to call a mental health expert, a battered woman, domestic violence expert that will explain that Jodi Arias`s behavior at all times was consistent with a woman who is a victim of domestic violence.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Jon Lieberman.

TECCE: You can get an expert to say whatever you want.


TECCE: You can find an expert to say exactly whatever you want if you have enough money. This case is about credibility. And Jodi has no credibility and, therefore, you can`t believe her self-defense story that she killed in self-defense.

SANDLER: Are you saying post-traumatic...


SANDLER: Are you saying post-traumatic stress is not a real disorder?

TECCE: It is. That`s not what this is.

SANDLER: That people don`t suffer traumatic incidents don`t remember...

TECCE: It is but not in this case.

SANDLER: ... everything that happened during the trauma? I mean, you can`t make that determination.

And I`ve been in trial after trial where experts have gone on the stand and have verified that it is very real, that people that suffered traumatic incidents in their life black out, that they will not remember every single thing that happened.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: OK, wait. Fred, go ahead.

TECCE: Right. Don`t manipulate the jury and make them wait nine days for you to play that card. That`s my point.

Of course, I can get an expert to come in and testify that I`m smart and well-spoken, but that doesn`t make it true.

The problem is her credibility is shot. She sits there for nine days to manipulate you, remembers every little detail. And then, as she loses credibility, she doesn`t remember the most important facts. And then she brings an expert in to basically say she`s telling the truth.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Rene, 10 seconds!

SANDLER: Ten seconds. I want to shift the focus completely. Travis Alexander was shooting an assault weapon, and nobody has said anything about that. So to make the leap that he didn`t have a gun is ridiculous.

TECCE: Was he shot with an assault rifle?

SANDLER: It looks just like an assault weapon.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Well, wait a second. Dave Hall. Dave Hall, clarify. Is it an assault weapon?

HALL: It`s an AR-15. And I can tell you right now Travis never owned a gun. And I was at his house one week before he was murdered, and if he owned a gun, he would have showed me and bragged about it and talked about it. He did not own a gun. I`d be happy to go on the stand and testify.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: All right. Plenty of debate still to come in the Jodi Arias case. This is the controversial footage that belongs to Dave Hall.

Top of the hour, Nancy Grace has her take on the week that was in the trial. "Nancy Grace Mysteries" here at 8 p.m. on HLN.

We have more debate on the other side. Stay right there. More testimony.


ARIAS (via phone): You know what I really like is when we were in the bathroom with the candles. And it was great (ph).


ARIAS: And there were bubbles. And I popped them. (ph)


ARIAS: Those were hot.




JODI ARIAS, ON TRIAL FOR MURDER OF TRAVIS ALEXANDER: When I finally came to, I saw that there was blood on my hands.

JUAN MARTINEZ, PROSECUTOR: And you enjoyed the tootsie pops and the pop rocks correct? You think that the braids are hot, don`t you?

ARIAS: I think cute is more appropriate.


ARIAS: I know. Those are hot.

MARTINEZ: What in the world gave you the right to go talk to an ex- boyfriend with who -- according to you -- you`d broken up with? What right do you have to do that?

ALEXANDER: I`m going to tie you to a tree and put it in your (EXPLETIVE DELETED).

MARTINEZ: You were jealous, right?

ARIAS: He was trying to court me back.

I confessed.


ARIAS: Confessed.

MARTINEZ: I write right now that I love Travis Victor Alexander so completely that I don`t know any other way to be.

ARIAS: And I could hear him.


JANE VELEZ-MITCHELL, HLN HOST: A fierce battle mano a mano in the courtroom -- prosecutor Juan Martinez ripping Jodi Arias apart over her on again/off again memory. Selective memory indeed -- Jodi claims she remembers so much. Nine days on the stand, but she does not remember viciously stabbing Travis Alexander 29 times or dragging his body across the room.

Here is prosecutor Juan Martinez picking at her convenient amnesia. Their exchange gets testy.


MARTINEZ: Do you remember stabbing Travis Alexander?

ARIAS: I have no memory of stabbing him.

MARTINEZ: Your problems with your memory, is it a recent vintage?

ARIAS: When I finally came to, I saw that there was blood on my hands.

MARTINEZ: So you can tell us, for example, what kind of coffee you bought at Starbucks back on June 3, 2008 but you can`t tell us what you said yesterday or the day before?

ARIAS: I always got the same drink at Starbucks.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Dr. Jen Berman, psychotherapist, is a blackout during a traumatic event like a killing something that exists in real life. I`ve blacked out, but that was before I got sober almost 18 years ago so alcohol was involved.

DR. JEN BERMAN, PSYCHOTHERAPIST: Ok. This is a different kind of blackout. And look, I will say this. It is absolutely possible when a person experiences trauma it is a known fact in psychology that they can experience memory loss.

That said, this is someone who she committed a crime. She admits she stabbed him 29 times, she shot him in the head, she slit his throat -- absolutely that qualifies as a trauma. But then she goes and she drives and she goes to kiss someone else because as she put it that she wanted to cover up. So she knew she did this, so she had to have some memory of doing it.

So to me, this is sign of someone who has a poorly developed conscience that just got caught in a lie and then went to cover it up.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: The prosecution exposed Jodie`s personal diary to try and prove she killed Travis out of jealous rage. In a dramatic moment prosecutor Martinez refereed to a journal entry from August 26, 2007. That day Jodi wrote about loving Travis so deeply she could not live without him.


MARTINEZ: I write right now that I love Travis Victor Alexander so completely that I don`t know any other way to be.

ARIAS: He was trying to court mew back.

MARTINEZ: The reason you confronted him back in August of 2007 was because you were in love with him and you didn`t want to let him go.

ARIAS: But I was in love with him.


So panel, does this prove that she was a jealous ex-girlfriend who killed him because she couldn`t have him or could it show that while she loved him so much that she had his best interest at heart and the only reason she killed him was because he had come after her? Starting with Jon Leiberman.

JON LEIBERMAN, HLN CONTRIBUTOR: I think she clearly loved him. I mean she`s written it everywhere. She`s testified to it, but what`s more significant is that she`s writing that she loves him on the heels of when she also testified that he had been nasty to her or he had physically abused her.

So the timetable that she`s setting and what Mr. Martinez is getting at is it doesn`t make sense. You don`t write in your journal how deeply you love somebody if they just did something horrible to you. It just doesn`t make sense.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Anahita, ten seconds.

ANAHITA SEDAGHATFAR, CRIMINAL DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Again, I disagree. I think that piece of evidence, if anything, it helps Jodi`s case. It shows that she truly loved this man and that something had to have happened during the incident that caused her to have to do what she did.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Wow. What a debate -- thank you, fantastic panel. Jodi back on the stand next for more cross from Juan Martinez -- will it be two cross? We`ll be all over it. Join us Monday at 7:00 p.m. Eastern right here.

But don`t go anywhere. On the other side, a steamy love triangle ends in murder. We`re talking "Scorned".


ROBI LUDWIG, CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGIST: Sarah realizes the person who she thought she was with is not the person she was with at all. He is in fact, a violent, volatile, obsessional stalker who doesn`t know how to respond to limits when a woman sets them in place.



VELEZ-MITCHELL: Viral vid of the day. A college cheerleader makes the basket of a life time with a front lift, half court shot. Oh my God. It goes in. Go Ashley. Go Ashley. This is freaky good. . Look at this, oh, my gosh -- three, two, one -- boom.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Extreme passion can lead to shocking consequences.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I think she still loved Matt. But I think she also loved Rick.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Her torrid affair with Rick Namey was supposed to be just a fun experiment, but it`s quickly turning into a disaster that she`s playing with fire.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The calm before the storm.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: This twisted triangle will end in violence, heartache and tragedy.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: A steamy love triangle ends in horror. Sarah Rodriguez, a beautiful 21-year-old pre-school teacher`s aide was devoted to wholesome high school sweetheart Matt Corbett, but Sarah who lived in Orange County her whole life -- and we`re talking California -- was looking for some kind of adventure when she found it with a mysterious stranger -- little did she know that her exciting, adulterous journey would end in murder.

This unbelievable story is true and it will be profiled on Investigation Discovery Saturday night, but we`re getting a sneak peek.


LUDWIG: Sarah realizes the person who she thought she was with is not the person she was with at all. He is, in fact, a violent, volatile, obsessional stalker who doesn`t know how to respond to limits when a woman sets them in place.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: She recognized, I think, before anyone else the potential that he had to hurt her and hurt the people around her.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Sarah`s affair with the mysterious Rick Namey grew very serious and seriously disturbing. Once she uncovered secrets about Rick`s troubled past it was already too late.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sarah happened to stumble upon some information that Rick was going to be ordered to court in regards to a restraining order for one of his former girlfriends.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: You could see the entire full episode of "Scorned: Love You to Death" on Investigation Discovery Saturday night 10:00 p.m. Eastern. But right now I have the wonderful Dr. Robi Ludwig, a contributor on Investigation Discovery to give us a preview.

Robi, tell us about how this tale of a girl torn between two men went so horribly wrong?

LUDWIG: Sarah and Matt were the quintessential high school couple that was going to make it all the way. In fact they were both planning on getting married. But before making that final commitment, Sarah really needed to experience life more.

So through the Internet she found Rick and also found that she had a passion for someone with more of a dark side. He was the bad boy that really captured her heart. He was controlling and dark but in many ways this was very exciting for her until it took a very difficult twist and a deadly twist.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Why do women always go for the bad guys?

LUDWIG: I know.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: This is a serious problem.

Sarah found Rick`s volatility very exciting. As you heard from Dr. Robi, in the sack, in the bedroom, but she was stunned when he started to get physically violent with her. Listen to this.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The indicators were there, but she was too young and hadn`t had that much experience in relationships to recognize those things as being very unhealthy.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He shoved her, so she fell on her back side. She was just so shocked that she didn`t know how to cope with it.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Now, after Sarah then broke up with Rick, Rick attacked her outside of one of her classrooms one day. Well, after that she got a restraining order.

But Dr. Robi it seemed that it was too little too late. He was already enmeshed in her life and she couldn`t get him out.

LUDWIG: Rick had a dark history with many of the women in his life including his sister who wouldn`t talk to him. He was the type of guy once he just was hooked in it was like he owned you and Rick really wanted to own Sarah, so much so that Sarah had to finally confess to her high school lover and boyfriend, "Listen, I`m in danger. I need your protection." And this is really when her high school boyfriend rose to the occasion and made it his mission to protect his girlfriend until the end.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Well, in fact, on April 16, 2003, Sarah and Matt -- this is her original boyfriend, the high school sweetheart -- they were driving home to have dinner before bible study, of all things, when Rick attacks them. Though Sarah was horrifically killed, Matt did survive with terrible injuries. Listen as Matt describes this absolutely just demonic shooting incident.


MATT CORBETT, SARAH`S BOYFRIEND: When I got shot, it just felt real hot, a lot of ringing in my ear. I would do anything I can to stay alive. I`m hearing screaming, shot me again in the back twice. And I remember me trying to touch Sarah but he went around the car and shot her once in the temple, killed her.

I said "Rick Namey, Richard Namey". I was trying to tell them who it was because I didn`t know if I was going to make it or not.



VELEZ-MITCHELL: Time for Pet o` the Day. Send your pet pics to Christina, look at you. You are a movie star. Joe-Joe, you look kind of like a rock star to me. Way to go, dude. And let`s see. Coco -- that is almost like a head shot out of Hollywood. Ditto for Claudette. Stunning, absolutely stunning.



CLAIR LUNA: Rick started exerting more control over her, and if she ever expressed any discomfort or any reluctance, he would turn physical toward her.

LUDWIG: Rick and Sarah`s relationship had those kind of control, volatile overtones and especially in their sex life that was rougher. So in some ways Sarah was desensitized or groomed, if you will, to accept something she wouldn`t accept otherwise.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: A love triangle turns deadly. Sarah cheats on her high school sweetheart with this guy named Rick. Rick then kills her. The sweetheart survives but he is shot, paralyzed and blind in one eye.

In 2004 Rick Namey, the guy who she cheated on who then kills her, he`s sentenced to 101 years to life in prison for murdering Sarah. Rick is behind bars for good. And finally Matt, the original boyfriend who was cheated on, tries to get some closure.

CORBETT: To be found guilty of first-degree murder, premeditation, and some carjackings, a few other felonies as well -- very happy with the decision.

JILL CORBETT, MATT`S MOTHER: When the verdict was announced, it was just like thank goodness. Thank goodness. It`s over.

CORBETT: Coming up on ten years. They say time heals. It`s hard to swallow at first but it does. It does.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Dr. Robi, this is a cautionary tale about love triangles -- avoid them.

LUDWIG: Yes. And, also, if you`re young -- you know, if somebody seems like a bad boy, beware. But Matt is really the hero in this story. If it weren`t for Matt, Rick may never have been found. It was through his sheer desire to mention the name when the police found him initially and he was barely holding on to life that really helped the police find Rick ultimately. So he`s our hero in this story.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: Another secret that Rick tried to keep from Sarah was drug addiction. Listen.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Rick has struggled with substance abuse for years and is undergoing treatment for heroin addiction.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sarah probably perceived that he was only a recreational user of drugs at first because he didn`t want to admit that he was actually an addict.

LUNA: I think Rick`s drug problem mixed with his anger issues made him a very difficult person to be around.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: As a recovering alcoholic, I understand how alcohol and drugs can really cause a person to act irrationally. This is a cautionary tale you can watch the entire show Investigation Discovery this Saturday night 10:00 p.m. Eastern. Check it out.

And on the other side of the break, oh, boy, you`ve got to see this.


VELEZ-MITCHELL: Hey, little Rico, tonight our "Animal Investigations Unit" tackles the controversy surrounding fur. Many fashionistas saying fur is once again a hot trend, but the Humane Society of the United States says that`s horrible news for animals.

The Humane Society gave us this footage and says what you`re seeing is actual dog fur that the Humane Society found on sale in New York. That`s right. The HSUS says that fur is from dogs -- dogs. Rico, dogs. It`s illegal to sell dog fur in the United States, but the Humane Society says it is still happening.

Meantime, there`s another hot trend on the runways this year, compassion. Vaute Couture (ph) became the first all vegan independent fashion house to show during New York Fashion Week. Tonight with us Leann Mai-ly Hilgard, president and founder of Vaute Couture. Leann, your clothing line is vegan meaning it contains no animal skin, no fur, no pelts at all. Tell us about this trend toward compassion in fashion.

LEANN MAI-LY HILGARD, VAUTE COUTURE: Well, more people are realizing that they can interact with the world in a way that they`re choosing. So when you choose not to wear or eat animals, that`s something that you are doing intentionally, and you`re making a huge difference doing that.

So I spent my life sayings and a year of development the first outer wear line that was made of all cruelty-free, vegan fabrics to say there`s no reason that we have to wear animals and is actually a statement of the heart.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: And this is your fashion show and it looks very, very hot to me.

HILGARD: Thank you.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: We reached out to the Fur Information Council of America and they claim the fur industry is committed to the humane and responsible treatment of animals and no industry is more highly regulated at local, national, and international levels.

The Humane Society of the United States claims that as many as dozens and dozens, sometimes up to 90 animals can be killed just to make one fur coat and that an estimated 75 million animals a year are killed for fur, for the fur trade.

The Humane Society gave us footage of raccoons. Take a look at these raccoons in cages. The footage also shows raccoons being skinned alive overseas. Some of the video is so horrifying we cannot show you a single frame of it. It is just too graphic. The Humane Society also gave us video of these foxes who they say are being anally electrocuted for fur in the United States.

Leann, why do you think your fur-free line is a better alternative than this?

HILGARD: Well, the thing is that people consider that the cruelty of the fur industry is intentional and some (inaudible) but really it`s just a matter of business. When you try to increase profits and lower costs, you`re going to be doing things to make the most production. And when you do that it doesn`t take into consideration the rights, feelings or needs of the animals involved; that`s why animals don`t belong in business.

And so for the fur industry, yes they are anally electrocuted. This is the way that they can make to keep the most fur to be perfect and pristine. And we don`t need to wear animals. If arctic explorers and astronauts are wearing synthetics that are at the cutting edge of innovation and high-tech weatherproofness, then we can be doing the next future of fashion by not wearing animals. There`s no need for it.

VELEZ-MITCHELL: So you`re saying that this compassionate fashion trend is growing because the fashionistas say, fur is everywhere but you`re saying that compassion is starting to be seen everywhere.

HILGARD: Absolutely. You know, originally it started with saying that we don`t need to wear fur and leather and now I wanted to step in and say we don`t need to wear animals at all. We don`t need to wear wool. We don`t need to wear silk. We don`t need to wear anything that comes from an animal, and it`s better off for the environment.

I mean the production of animals in fur is --

VELEZ-MITCHELL: They claim that it`s not but we`re happy to debate it.

Nancy Grace is up next.