Updated: Mormon Moment: Travis Alexander Trial

by: Jeff Spector

May 10, 2013

jodyYou may remember I posted this story, The Latest Mormon Moment: Travis Alexander Murder Trial back on March 1st. I anticipated that it would be over in a few weeks. Well, it is still going on. However, the jury reached a verdict and found Jody Arias Guilty of 1st degree murder just this week. The jury made their decision in 15 hours.

The next phase of the trial involve whether she gets the death penalty or not. That was supposed to start yesterday. However, Jody, always the master manipulator, declared in a TV interview that she rather be dead sooner than later than spending the rest of her life in jail, she is no on suicide watch.

The Church and its teaching, particularly on chastity still had a role to in the trial, being brought up frequently. And how Travis, and Jody, for that matter, were not living the law.

At any rate, this latest Mormon Moment is still in the moment………

16 Responses to Updated: Mormon Moment: Travis Alexander Trial

  1. All_Black on May 10, 2013 at 8:52 AM

    that link links back to W&T home page..???

    By the way is this Travis or boyfriend have anything to do with the church? (i’ve only come across this this week)

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  2. Jeff Spector on May 10, 2013 at 9:11 AM

    I fixed the link and it should tell you all you need to know about it. Plus, it’s all over the Internet as well.

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  3. Brian on May 10, 2013 at 10:29 AM

    Let’s not forget the Mormon moment of the 17 year old Mormon who killed the soccer ref in Utah.

    I actually have always hated when a person’s religion is mentioned but it has nothing to do with whatever event is being reported. On the other hand, Deseret News constantly has articles on Mormons in the NFL, Mormons in this, Mormons in that. The last I noticed was an article on the 3 or 4 Mormons left on The Voice (or one of those shows). It’s as if the church is more true because some Mormons do well. We got a call the other day from The Church News trying to track my son down for an interview. Will burst their bubble when they learn he is not active.

    The mainstream frenzy has ended and I think both sides are happy.

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  4. Will on May 10, 2013 at 2:27 PM


    The identity of the 17 year old has not been released, so I’m not sure how you know his religion. Regardless of his faith, this event will ruin the rest of his life as it has the wife and children of the ref. A lose, lose situation.

    As for Jody Aris; all I can say is thank goodness Arizona has the death penalty.

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  5. mh on May 10, 2013 at 9:34 PM

    I haven’t followed this at all. I got a news alert on my phone about Jodi Arias, and I didn’t even know who she was. When I read the article, I remembered jeffs post in March. My wife mentioned the trial to me that day, and I told her Jodi was a Mormon. Then I read you’re post to my wife. (it is a great snapshot by the way.) My wife was pretty startled to learn Jodi and Travis were both LDS.

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  6. Jared on May 11, 2013 at 7:25 AM

    Like MH I haven’t followed this story. Now that I’m familiar with it, I sorry for all involved.

    The news and the American psyche take special interest, even delight, when those who profess faith are caught up in sensational and salacious courtroom drama, and ignore or roll their eyes when Spiritual experience and miracles are related.

    Two weeks ago Friday, I spent 2 1/2 hours listening to a man who died twice while medical teams treated him for a massive heart attack. Yes, another NDE (near death experience) by an active LDS. His experience is like that of Elder David B Haight’s Oct 1989 Conference talk. Elder Haight related some of the details of his NDE, saying:

    “I was shown a panoramic view of His earthly ministry: His baptism, His teaching, His healing the sick and lame, the mock trial, His crucifixion, His resurrection and ascension. There followed scenes of His earthly ministry to my mind in impressive detail, confirming scriptural eyewitness accounts. I was being taught, and the eyes of my understanding were opened by the Holy Spirit of God so as to behold many things.”

    Ralph Jensen said that he saw the Savior and was shown a comprehensive “vision” of the Saviors pre-mortal, mortal, and post portal life (His appearance to the Nephities). He also saw the creation of the earth.

    In recent years, many people with medical records to back their story, have related NDE that provide compelling evidence of an afterlife.

    I believe Heavenly Father is providing these kinds of experiences to increase faith in a world that is quickly moving into the end of days. I believe them because of my sacred experiences. I haven’t had an out-of-body experience, but I have had an in-the-body experiences like Enos and the people of King Benjamin. I’ve been mocked or marginalized by some LDS for testifying of these things. The scriptures teach that we need to let our light shine, if we have one to shine, and not to hide it under a bushel. But the occupants of great and spacious building make it difficult. This forum, Wheat and Tares, like many others in the ‘nacle is frequented by eye rollers, mockers, and nay-sayers. I’m not saying this to be critical. I am saying it with the hope of waking up those who are in a deep sleep.

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  7. Brett on May 11, 2013 at 10:11 AM

    I happen to have served my mission with Elder Travis Alexander. He was a great missionary. He worked very hard and set a great example for all the rest of us to follow. He was my zone leader for two month and I honestly learned more from him in those two months than any other zone leaders I ever had. Even though I have not seen him since the mission, I think about him weekly because of the various things I learned from him. I just recently found out that he was murdered and it shook me to the core. No matter what mistakes he may have made, he was a great missionary, an even greater person, and a outstanding member of the church.

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  8. FireTag on May 11, 2013 at 4:05 PM


    Your perspective is appreciated here.


    Sometimes people come up against manipulators whose ability to hide their darkness is simply not understandable unless you have been exposed to it. Arias appears after the trial to be manipulative enough to be beyond the understanding of people more mature than a young man can be expected to be.

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  9. Jeff Spector on May 11, 2013 at 5:37 PM


    Thanks for stopping by and sharing your recollections. We are all subject to the trials of this life and make mistakes. But, there is no excuse for the murder of an innocent person. And to drag his name and his family through the mud is realty unconscionable.

    While I a not a firm believer in the death penalty, this might be one of those times where it is warranted.

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  10. All_Black on May 11, 2013 at 7:14 PM

    Didn’t Ted Bundy also join the church whilst on the prowl in Utah ?

    Maybe, soon, Bundy and this Jodi Arias will start a new LDS branch down in hell. Or maybe they will join Arthur Gary Bishop ward as first counselor and relief society president?

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  11. Brian on May 11, 2013 at 10:38 PM

    “this forum, Wheat and Tares, like many others in the ‘nacle is frequented by eye rollers, mockers, and nay-sayers. I’m not saying this to be critical. I am saying it with the hope of waking up those who are in a deep sleep.”

    I felt i woke up the minute I started rolling my eyes.

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  12. Hedgehog on May 12, 2013 at 2:11 AM

    Jared, I second FireTag, I appreciate your perspective.

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  13. Rick on May 12, 2013 at 12:20 PM


    I think you should consider these scriptures.

    “He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone.” John 8:7

    “Judge not, that ye be not judged.” Matthew 7:1

    I’m not saying this to be critical. I am saying it with the hope of waking up those who are in a deep sleep.

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  14. douglas on May 12, 2013 at 12:42 PM

    Brett, thanks for sticking up for Travis. We tend to focus on a man’s foibles, yet He that laid down His life will remember the good as well as the evil. Likewise if there is any hope for the demented soul that is Jodi Arias, He will find a way.
    Is there a lesson besides be true always to your covenants. I suppose it is this: when you know that if you’re in a relationship with a demented person, run, don’t walk away. At least I didn’t get shot or my throat cut. At this point, I no longer blame “her”, I blame only myself for not taking action sooner. Whatever it takes now to get my life back is well worth it.

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  15. mr020507 on May 24, 2013 at 9:43 PM

    To, Brett on May 11, 2013 at 10:11 AM

    the following is from a talk, at a BYU Idaho devotional by D. Joshua Holt, business management faculty, at BYU Idaho, entitled “Remember Remember”

    As I searched for inspiration on a topic for today I felt the Spirit say to me, “Help them remember who they are.” Today I want to share with you the importance of remembering.

    When my children were at home and before they went out on activities with friends I always said to them: “Remember who and what you are.” Did your parents not say the same to you? My children heard it so often they’d say, “yeah, dad.”

    But what is significant about this word remember? What was it I wanted them to remember?

    President Spencer W. Kimball said:

    “When you look in the dictionary for the most important word, do you know what it is? It could be ‘remember.’ Because all of [us] have made covenants…our greatest need is to remember. That is why everyone goes to sacrament meeting every Sabbath day—to take the sacrament and listen to the priests pray that [we] ‘may always remember him and keep his commandments which he has given [us].’ … ‘Remember’ is the word” (Circles of Exaltation [address to religious educators, Brigham Young University, 28 June 1968], 8).

    President Bruce Blanchard, a counselor here on BYU-Idaho’s campus, serves as a member of my stake presidency. In stake conference he told the story of a man he counseled when he lived in Utah before coming to BYU-I. The man was in prison and had actually served as a missionary in the same mission as President Blanchard. President Blanchard asked him “How does a temple-endowed returned missionary, who bore testimony, end up in prison?” The man simply answered “I forgot who I was. I forgot my Savior.” He forgot and fell away.

    Brett, you and your fellow missionaries, that were impacted for good, by Elder Travis Alexander, during your mission, would best be served, in holding onto those solid experiences………..

    Using just the Bible, how many experiences of serious heartache, is depicted, of those once favored, that, because, of their decisions, with the choices they faced, found themselves, outside the favor, of The Great Jehovah…………Cain, the first murderer in our earth’s history. Raised up before God, by Adam and Eve. Fast forward to David, reading all that he experienced for good, then as King, before his fall, what did The Great Jehovah state…………that David, was a man after His own heart……

    Brett, the true measure of a man, is not, how he, performs, in the light of day, or when all is looking at him…………..no, the true measure of a man, is when the earth turns on it axis, bringing on night, the darkness and when no one is watching.

    I have no doubt, that, there was a time, when Travis Alexander, was an outstanding member of the church, however, judging, by the endowed LDS women, that, took the stand, in open court, under oath, that testified, to Travis’s lack of commitment, to, the extremely sacred covenants, that he, willingly, took upon himself, before and after, he, entered the temple.

    Brett and any other person, holding on to a distorted image of Travis Alexander, fully sealed in shinning armor, metaphorically or symbolically. As being shielded in the armor of God……………….let it go.

    It is blatantly obvious, that, for several years, following his mission, that, Travis, was responsible, for dragging a number of endowed LDS women, insecure, little self respect and low self esteem, down to his level, with in the gutter, becoming complicit, in committing such egregious sins, that, they were second to murder.

    Becoming responsible, for these women, to make that lonely walk of shame, into their Bishops office, to start the incredibly painful, lonely, shameful, hurtful and damaging for all involved, which includes immediate families, of the repentance process. Placing their church membership, temple blessings, gift of the holy ghost and partaking of the sacred sacrament, all at risk, of having them revoked and placed outside the grace of Jesus and placed in a position of being under the buffetings of Satan.

    Yeah, this sterling stripling warrior, went through LDS woman after woman, subjecting them all to this process and leaving them all in his, wake, of broken hearts and broken trust, not to look back, adding another notch to his belt.

    Yeah, Travis Alexander was a real piece of work…………………..because he, honestly felt, he, could serve two masters, by way of participating in the gospel, putting on that show of hypocrisy, in the day, but in the dark, satisfying his carnal urge, engaged in ensuring the dance card of Satan, was full.

    I found it interesting, that only one LDS woman, a strong willed, full of self respect, truly willing to stand tall, for what, she, holds sacred, the blonde, was the only one, that, rejected the sexual advances of Travis, resulting, in him, ending the relationship and him moving on, to some other insecure, weak LDS woman, to be drug into his web of deceit.

    Travis, was a liar, he did just tell lies, He, was a liar. He lived a life of lies and deceit not caring, who, he dragged down with him.

    Interesting, that, his, only criteria, was that the woman, be LDS…………..what does that say, for his true feelings, for the women of the LDS Church.

    How ironic, for him, to make, a half assed attempt to end the incredibly unhealthy relationship with Jodi, to suck her in, for one last, roll in the proverbial hay, which ended his life, which left him, in an extremely precarious position, of crossing the veil, into “spirit prison”, because he, had put off, his day of repentance…….. to await the arrival of Jodi. Which depending on the verdict of the jury, could be a few years or until the end of her life.

    Either way, they will be in the same place after all, to await the last of all the resurrections.

    The only question, I don’t have the answer to, is, with as many, LDS women, that Travis was involved with Sexually, since serving his mission, had he been excommunicated or at the very least dis-fellow shipped. ????

    Or had he just continued to carry on his incredibly hypocritical life style. Waiting for just the right moment to seek out his Bishop, wink, wink……………..

    Brett, if anything, you can use, the tragic life of Travis, as a teaching example, to any and all, young perspective missionaries, as to what happens, to all those that fail to hold fast, to the rod of iron………………..exactly as depicted in Lehi’s dream, with in the Book of Mormon.

    Perhaps, that is why, President Kimball, once made the statement, “he felt, that the word remember, was the most important word, in our language”.

    Which is why, the word “remember” is the most prevalent word in the baptism ordinance and the sacramental prayer.

    When we fail to “remember” who we are and what we stand for, what happens.

    When we fail to “remember” to call upon Father daily, through the day and night, what happens.

    When we fail to “remember” to steep ourselves, in the scriptures, what happens.

    The tragic life of Travis, can be used as a serious teaching moment, for the generation up and coming.

    Brett, ………………….hold fast and stand tall.

    go with God.

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  16. Brian on June 4, 2013 at 4:11 PM

    The fact that Gordon Gee is Mormon has surprisingly not been mentioned in most articles surrounding the OSU president’s “those damn Catholics” remark. He apparently is resigning (retiring from) his 1.9 million dollar a year position at Ohio State,

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