PHOENIX - Jurors in the Jodi Arias trial witnessed a showdown in the courtroom Thursday as the lead prosecutor began grilling Arias to try and prove she planned to kill her ex-boyfriend.
Juan Martinez is known for being an aggressive, no-holds-barred lawyer for the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office.
But legal experts said Arias held her ground Thursday.
“I would never want to imagine being in that seat right now but for what she's up against - she's doing well,” said attorney Brent Kleinman .
At one point, Arias even turned the tables on Martinez.
“What factors influence your having a memory problem,” asked Martinez.
“Usually when men like you are screaming at me or grilling me or someone like Travis [Alexander] doing the same,” quipped Arias.
Leading up to the cross examination, Kleinman said Arias' defense team likely practiced and prepped her for tough questions.
“They're gonna have someone pretending to be Juan Martinez and go through it, so she's done this once or twice before,” Kleinman said.
But Kleinman said Arias needs to be careful.
“If she's going to challenge him wit to wit, she's going to lose,” he said.
Kleinman also predicted Arias' defiant behavior would not last through the trial.
"When it gets to more graphic testimony that he's going to be asking her about, I don't think she's going to have the same demeanor she has today and that's going to be the tell all," Kleinman said.
But Kleinman said Martinez also has to be cautious and added there's likely someone watching the jury to see how they react to his demeanor.
“They may tell him to tone it down a little bit or shorten the cross to what needs to be done. There's people he's got making sure he's not rubbing them the wrong way,” Kleinman said.
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