She and Menendez pleaded not guilty in federal court in Manhattan on Wednesday, with Arslanian bringing a $2,300 quilted Chanel bag for their first joint court appearance. “I’m just heartsick about her,” said a woman who identified herself as a close relative. “I’ve been crying all day. She is an upstanding person. Nothing in her life prepared her for this.” Marriage to a senator should have been the culmination of an American dream for Arslanian, who was born in 1967 in Beirut, Lebanon, in a wealthy Armenian household.