According to the San Diego Union-Tribune, on Dec. 31, 2020, Janks reportedly picked up Merriman from a care facility and drove him back to his residence. The two lived next door to each other and even shared a driveway.
At the trial, Janks reportedly testified she found nude photos of herself on Merriman’s computer when she was cleaning his apartment. One was reportedly set as his screensaver. She allegedly looked through his computer and found hundreds of other images.
Janks reportedly said she wanted to confront him about the photos when he returned home from the care facility, and even asked someone else to be with her when she did it. The person, who prosecutors reportedly referred to as a "fixer," didn’t show up.
The San Diego Union-Tribune reports Janks testified Merriman drank a lot of whiskey on the ride home from the care facility and fell twice as she tried walking him to his home. She allegedly tried to take him back to the facility, but they would not re-admit him.
She reportedly sent incriminating text messages to people, which included, "I just dosed the hell out of him," and "I can’t carry him alone and I can’t keep a kicking body in my trunk."
Janks reportedly said she left Merriman in her car to sleep off his drunkenness but then found him dead the next day. She reportedly covered his body in boxes and blankets.
Merriman died from an overdose of sleeping pills. Deputy District Attorney Jorge Del Portillo argued in court Janks strangled him and put a plastic bag over his head, too. Janks’ attorney, however, said Merriman abused pills in the past and he did not show any signs of strangulation.