Watch the following How Competent are Expert Witnesses and Expert Witness Dr. Janeen DeMarte on Jodi Arias case videos. Respond to the following questions located at the bottom (you should provide approx 200-300 words total in answering each question asked):
Watch: How Competent are Expert Witnesses
Watch: Expert Witness Dr. Janeen DeMarte on the Jodi Arias Case
Expert Witness Janeen DeMarte on Jodi Arias: Personality Disorder & “Inappropriate Intense Anger” (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.Prosecutor Juan Martinez’s first rebuttal witness, psychologist Janeen DeMarte, describes Jodi Arias as strange, immature and having borderline personality disorder. As part of her diagnosis, DeMarte discusses Jodi’s unstable and intense interpersonal relationships, identity disturbance, suicidal behavior and ideation, affective instability, feelings of emptiness, and probably most significant to the case, “inappropriate intense anger.”
This “inappropriate intense anger” is a side to Jodi that hadn’t really been discussed in court up to this point. DeMarte reads an email Jodi sent to Travis where she reveals that her “anger is very destructive”, that she’s kicked holes in walls, kicked down doors, smashed windows, and broken things. Jodi writes that this anger “hurts people and it hurts me.” Was Jodi feeling this anger on a colossal scale when she finally came to the realization that Travis did not want to be with her?
On another note, some of this testimony may arguably be helpful to the defense for mitigating factors against the death penalty. Some of the testimony may humanize her. DeMarte testified that she does believe Jodi had suicidal thoughts spanning from 1995 and had feelings of emptiness. On the other hand DeMarte is also testifying that she believes Jodi’s memory fog after killing Travis is a lie.
Testy Exchange Between Janeen DeMarte & Jennifer Willmott on Whether Jodi Arias Was Abused (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.The prosecution’s expert psychology witness, Janeen DeMarte, goes head-to-head against defense lawyer Jennifer Willmott. Willmott seems to be taking on Martinez’s approach by asking close-ended questions to which DeMarte keeps telling her, “I’d like to clarify.” Willmott ends her cross-examination by asking DeMarte if she didn’t think it was important that in one of the tests Jodi scored low in hostility, aggression, and dominance. DeMarte seemed to have a response but was unable to “clarify.” During the exchange, Willmott is referencing the last argument between Travis Alexander and Jodi Arias on May 26, 2008 where Travis tries to break things off for good from Jodi. The argument was so harsh that it’s been referred to in the trial as “character assassination.” After reading the instant messages on that day, Travis’ close friend asked Travis, “Aren’t you afraid she’s going to hurt you?” About a week later, Travis is dead.
Janeen DeMarte Disagrees That Jodi Arias Had PTSD — Defense Says She Lied But Still Suffered Trauma (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.The prosecution’s first rebuttal witness, psychologist Janeen DeMarte, disagrees with the defense’s psychologist witness Richard Samuels on his diagnosis that Jodi Arias suffered PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) resulting in memory loss after killing Travis Alexander. Demarte’s argument is that if Jodi lied during the test (saying that 2 intruders killed Travis), then it automatically voids the test because it cannot be based on something that is made up. Jodi’s defense lawyer, Jennifer Willmott, argues that even if Jodi lied about intruders, she would still have suffered trauma since she had just killed someone close to her (and was allegedly in fear for her life before doing so). An argument can be made that Jodi planned to kill Travis, murdered him, and after that it doesn’t matter whether she suffered PTSD or not.
1. What information does our module readings and lecture provide in terms of an expert witness having credibility and competence?
2. What does the video “How Competent are Expert Witnesses...” share as problematic and worrisome in regards to expert witnesses (what are the concerns about competency and what are some the serious results of judges/courts siding with incompetent expert witnesses)?
3. Watch Dr. Janeen DeMarte provide expert witness testimony on the Jodi Arias case. In terms of what module readings and lecture share about providing and presenting expert witness testimony, how do you rate Dr. DeMarte’s performance? What did she do well? What did not go so well? Did she match up with some of the recommended standards of serving as a credible expert witness according to our textbook…explain (bring some module 3 reading and lecture information into this summary to support your answers).