PHOENIX — Jurors at the sentencing retrial of convicted murderer Jodi Arias saw a series of gruesome photos that showed her ex-boyfriend's dead body crammed into a shower at his house — his throat slit.
Lawyers warned jurors that they would see graphic crime-scene photos and sexually explicit images that Arias and former boyfriend Travis Alexander took of each other before Arias attacked him.
"She loved him so much that this is what she did to him," prosecutor Juan Martinez said of one ghastly photo. He urged jurors to sentence Arias to death.
Defense attorney Kirk Nurmi said Tuesday that Arias was the victim of profound sexual humiliation by Alexander and that she is mentally ill and a victim of child abuse.
He urged jurors to sentence her to life in prison, saying she is remorseful about killing the man who never acknowledged to others that she was his girlfriend.
"Jodi Arias was always the girl behind the closed door in the bedroom," Nurmi told jurors.
The opening statements came as a jury was seated and testimony began in a retrial to determine whether Arias lives or dies for her crime.
It was less of a spectacle than the initial case in early 2013, when onlookers from around the country traveled to Phoenix and lined up outside court for the trial that became a tabloid TV sensation. Still, some of the people who regularly attended the first trial were back in court Tuesday.
Arias has acknowledged killing Alexander but claimed it was self-defense after he attacked her. Prosecutors said it was premeditated murder carried out in a jealous rage after the victim wanted to end their affair and planned a trip to Mexico with another woman.
Nurmi suggested Arias would testify during the proceedings that were expected to last until December.
"She will tell you how horrified she is that she killed the man she loved," the defense attorney said.