TODAY   |  May 04, 2013

Jury deliberations begin in Arias trial

There are more men than women on the jury in the Jodi Arias trial, and TODAY legal analyst Lisa Bloom said that may be a good thing for the defendant.  “The conventional wisdom is that men are softer on female defendants,” Bloom told TODAY’s Lester Holt.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>> a jury in arizona will resume deliberating the fate of jodi arias. it comes after four months of often lurid testimony that included intimate details about arias' relationship with her ex-boyfriend. arias is charged with first-degree murder but she could be convicted on a lesser charge. lisa bloom is a "today" legal analyst. lisa, good morning. good morni good to e you. she was on the stand for 18 days. one of the issues is likability but her own lawyer says most of the time i don't like her. it's not about whether you like her or not.

>> that was the most surprising thing in yesterday's defense closing arguments. nine out of ten days i don't like jodi arias. as a trial attorney myself, i would never say that. i usually bond with my clients. you sit with them day after day . this is a self-defense case. her story is that travis alexander attacked me. i had to respond to defend myself. if that's true, why isn't she likable?

>> then the prosecution says the evidence points to a premeditated act. she was trying to cover her tracks as she went back to commit the murder. the judge has given the jury several options here from murder to manslaughter. what's the strongest case the prosecution has?

>> there are four choices for this jury as you say. murder 1 which is premeditated intentional killing. if they convict her of that, she could be subject to the death penalty . a second phase of a trial to determine that. murder 2 is intentional killing without premeditation. manslaughter would be in the heat of parssion they killed him. and self-defense. no one thinks that will happen. if i had to speculate, murder 1 fits best with evidence at trial.

>> self-defense up against the fact he was stabbed 27 times. throat was slashed. and he was shot.

>> yes.

>> that's a lot of self-defense.

>> a lot of stabbing was stabbing in the back. stabbing in his back. that's hard to explain in a self-defense theory. she got away. she lied to the police. she told several different stories. she didn't have any significant injuries.

>> more men than women on this jury, is that helpful to a female defendant, attractive female defendant. i don't want to say men are shallow.

>> tell us how you feel. the conventional wisdom is that men are softer on female defendants and that female defendants in general are less likely to get convicted and if they are convicted, less likely to get the death penalty . this is a male victim. this is a story the prosecution tells of a woman who was stalking him and drove 1,000 miles to get him. he was afraid of her. he told his friends he was afraid of her. men may relate to that story and not be easy on her and prosecutor in his closing argument said don't buy those tears. he was very hard on her for crying trying to undercut the sensitivity that men have for an attractive woman crying.

>> thank you for joining us. let's head back to churchill downs where dylan is getting ready for what could be a very soggy kentucky derby . hey, dylan.