Jodi Arias Could Still Face Death Penalty, But Could Also Be Paroled

Jodi Arias could still face the death penalty after all, a judge ruled.

In court documents filed on Friday, Judge Sherry Stephens ruled against defense attorneys who had tried to argue that banning a defense aide from visiting Arias in jail prejudiced the murder case against her. Arias was convicted last year of murdering former boyfriend Travis Alexander.

Stephens said there is no proof that the incident hurt the defense team’s ability to present evidence at the penalty phase retrial in September. After Arias was convicted of second-degree murder, jurors couldn’t reach a decision on whether to sentence her to the death penalty, sending it to a new phase of trial.

If Jodi Arias does escape the death penalty, she could still be eligible for parole: “Under state law, while her murder conviction stands, prosecutors have the option of putting on a second penalty phase with a new jury in an effort to secure a death sentence… If the second panel fails to reach a unanimous decision, the death penalty will be removed from consideration. The judge then would sentence Arias to spend her life behind bars or be eligible for release after 25 years. The second penalty phase is set for September.”Though it is not assured Arias will face the death penalty, legal experts believe it would be highly unlikely for her to be eligible for parole.

While she awaits her fate, Jodi Arias has reportedly been suffering health effects and is said to be drifting into paranoia. TMZ reported that contacted hepatitis C in jail, and Arias claimed it was from a needle used for a tuberculosis shot. She also filed a restraining order against Sheriff Joe Arpaio, claiming he was responsible for it. She also claimed that television host Nancy Grace leaked private and sensitive information about her.

Arpaio called the restraining order just a bid for attention.

“I know that she wants publicity and the only way she can get publicity is to go after this controversial sheriff, and she’s won because I am talking to you,” he said.

The sheriff also denied allegations that he supplied Nancy Grace with personal letters sent by Jodi Arias.

“The only real connection I had with her when I sent my detectives to New York to catch a guy who was gonna kill her and brought the guy back here, and he’s in my jail,” Arpaio said.

Jodi Arias is set to start her retrial in September to see if she will get the death penalty or life in prison.