Jodi Arias in February
A judge sentenced Jodi Arias to life in prison without the possibility of parole on Monday after she was convicted of fatally stabbing and shooting her former boyfriend in 2008.
The sentencing capped a sensational trial that has spanned years.
Maricopa County Superior Court judge Sherry Stephens had to decide whether to sentence Arias to natural life in prison or life in prison with a possibility of release after 25 years, AZCentral.com reported.
The death penalty was removed as an option after a jury last month was unable to reach a verdict in her sentencing retrial.
Stephens said that the she found the crime "especially cruel" and that the mitigating factors presented by the defense were not adequate to grant Arias a possibility of release in 25 years.
Arias will be "incarcerated for the rest of her natural life with no possibility of parole," Stephens said before the packed courtroom.
Arias, 34, was convicted of first-degree murder by another jury in 2013. She shot her former boyfriend, Travis Alexander, in the head and stabbed him nearly 30 times in what prosecutors described as a jealous rage. The 30-year-old's body was found in the shower in his Phoenix home with his throat slit. Prosecutors said Arias murdered him because he wanted to break up with her.
Arias read a statement before the judge on Monday saying she was "disgusted and repulsed" by herself and that she could not believe she was capable of doing something that terrible. "I am very sorry for the enormous pain I have caused the people that love Travis," Arias said. "I'm horrified by what I did and I wish I could take it back."
She also said that death would have brought her "untold peace and freedom" but that her family members and friends would have suffered if she had begged for the death penalty or taken her own life.
Arias' mother, Sandy Arias, also read a statement and said she knew her daughter for the "beautiful soul she is and she is not the monster she is made out to be."
After initially denying her involvement, Arias later admitted that she killed Alexander in self-defense. The four-month trial in 2013 became a tabloid spectacle as media outlets and the public devoured details of Arias and Alexander's sex life.
The jury that convicted her was unable to reach a verdict on whether to sentence her to death or life in prison, leading to a sentencing retrial last year.
The second jury also became deadlocked when it voted 11–1 in favor of the death penalty. The holdout juror was accused by the other 11 of having an agenda; her objectivity was questioned after she watched a Lifetime movie about the Arias case and had "liked" local TV stations on Facebook, the Associated Press reported.
Tasneem Nashrulla is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.
Contact Tasneem Nashrulla at email@example.com.
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