Will Jodi Arias receive extra jail perks? - Dallas News | myFOXdfw.com

Will Jodi Arias receive extra jail perks?

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PHOENIX (KSAZ) - FOX 10 reported earlier this week that convicted killer Jodi Arias is acting as her own attorney. While we wait to find out what that will mean for her in the courtroom we now get an idea of what that means for her behind bars.

"The sheriff was concerned that this was just another attempt by her to manipulate the system," said Chief Mike Olsen.

In jail, it's well known that inmates who act as their own attorneys get some special privileges that other inmates don't get.

Detention officers admit now that Jodi Arias is representing herself she will be treated differently.

"I think she is going to find out she is a little bit more limited than she hoped she was going to be," said Olsen

Right now Arias is confined to her cell 23 hours a day. She is allowed a single half hour visit per week, and she can talk on the phone up to an hour per day.

But now because she is seen as preparing her case she can get up to six visits per week, five of those with court approved witnesses, and there is no set time limit on those visits. It's the same with phone calls, and she will have a list of court approved contacts and can stay on the phone with them as long as the phone is available.

"We will give her time to use the telephone, and do the things she needs to do to represent herself. We don't want to hinder that in any way. However, she will still have to stay within the guidelines and the jail rules," he said.

MCSO Jail Chief Mike Olsen said Jodi's new status may hurt her art dealing business. Some of her pieces are going for several thousand dollars. Olsen said Jodi was moving the art out of jail through her mitigation specialist for her case. But now that she's her own attorney she shouldn't have to send the art anywhere. Despite the few perks, she's getting Jodi Arias is under very close watch.

"She is still a close custody inmate, the highest classification that we have. We're still going to treat her that way, she's been convicted of a crime, the most serious crime there is, she's going to be treated the same way," said Olsen.

The jury that found Arias guilty of murdering former boyfriend Travis Alexander couldn't agree on whether she should get the death penalty or life in prison.

Jury selection for the re-trial begins September 8th.
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