San Diego Love Triangle Verdict Murder or Manslaughter: Jennifer Trayers Case

(UPDATE 2/8/2012 Verdict: Jennifer Trayers convicted of second degree murder (just like Betty Broderick) faces 16 years to life in prison. Jury deliberated 4 days.)

In San Diego, a Navy doctor’s wife of 19 years, Jennifer Trayers, is accused of stabbing her Navy doctor husband to death. After weeks of testimony, the jury is out deliberating. Was the killing murder or manslaughter? Planned attack or rage killing after learning of an affair? The evidence seems to point to murder rather than manslaughter.

Tough case for manslaughter. Husband was stabbed while sleeping after taking sleeping medication. Evidence of  lying in wait? 8 stab wounds in the back and 2 in the chest. No self-defense? Wife learned of affair several months earlier before the stabbing occurred which may defeat any claim of rage-induced manslaughter at time of stabbing. Husband had previous affairs according to the defendant.

However, maybe, not murder. The medical expert testified 6 stab wounds occurred after his death suggests she possibly “lost it” and was acting in uncontrollable rage. Or, maybe, the jury will find other reasons to support a manslaughter verdict. The defendant did testify she had no intent to kill her husband and that may sway one or more jurors.

Clearly, there is evidence of the defendant’s controlling and manipulative behavior. Months prior, the defendant installed spyware to intercept emails between her husband and his mistress, and, discovered they were planning on getting married and having children. The defendant testified repeatedly that she felt ignored by her husband and claims she meant to kill herself not her husband.

Yet, after the killing, she sent an 8 page email to his mistress, stating “My husband is NOT going to be yours…I was the last person he was with” which suggests another, “if you leave me, I will kill you”, violent killing, a terrible tragedy.

Does jealousy ever justify killing another?

Simply my opinion, what say you?

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6 Comments on “San Diego Love Triangle Verdict Murder or Manslaughter: Jennifer Trayers Case”

  1. justneverno says:

    bottom line no one has the right to take another persons life….she did the crime let her do her time…

  2. WOW, sounds alot like the Dan and Betty Broderick case, which coincidently also took place in San Diego.

  3. MeowtainLion says:

    I also thought it was against rules to have affairs in the military. There is a code of conduct. Why isn’t the mistress in trouble.

  4. incredulous citizen says:

    As a close family member of the victim all I can say is that it is illogical to me that the law suggests that a defendant’s prison time can be cut in half because they are unable to control their emotions. “The feelings made me do it!” Moreover, the defense’s argument is preposterous. If this was a temporary fit of rage, why would she not call the police or 911 after the stabbing? Instead, she cut herself, sent an email, and took a nap. I do understand that Jen lost control and I believe she feels tremendous remorse. It is clear that she is shattered. I just hope that a fair verdict is given to punish the crime of murdering a person who was loved by many.

  5. Jill Estensen says:

    If the husband truly wanted to leave the marriage, he would have done so. Yes, perhaps he was between the rock and the hard place. Perhaps his mistress was as possessive as his wife. Perhaps he was involved with a newer version of his wife. The patterns in relationships repeat themselves. We will attract to us what we need to understand or learn and if we don’t learn it in this lifetime, we will come back to try it again. We will repeat it until we get it right. Crimes of passion or insanity? Either way the husband is free now. The wife however will have new experiences as a result of her behavior, sane or insane as it may be.


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