Phil_Spector_Trial_WEB by xiaohuicaicai

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									Phil Spector Trial




         Murder of Lana Clarkson
Arrest of Phil Spector
February 3, 2003

   Record producer Phil Spector was
    arrested early that morning at his
    Alhambra mansion. Police were
    summoned by a limo driver who dropped off Spector and actress Lana
    Clarkson, 40, and was waiting in the mansion‟s driveway. According
    to the limo driver, several shots were fired, then Spector came out and
    said “I think I killed somebody.”
   Officers who entered the mansion found Clarkson in the foyer,
    slumped over a chair, dead of a gunshot wound to her temple.
    Spector resisted arrest, was Tasered and then tackled. A handgun
    believed to be Spector‟s was recovered.
   Spector allegedly told officers the incident was an accident. He then
    claimed that it was a suicide.
Evidentiary hearings
Spector’s initial admission &
later exculpatory statements

   At a suppression hearing Spector asked
    that his admission to officers that he
    accidentally shot the victim be suppressed
    because he was under the influence of
    prescription drugs. His motion was
    denied. Judge Fiedler ruled that this
    admission can be introduced.

   Spector‟s lawyers also asked to introduce
    later exculpatory statements made by
    Spector to police, that Clarkson‟s death
    was by her own hands, either an accident
    or a suicide. Judge Fiedler repeatedly
    refused to allow these statements in
    unless Spector takes the stand and can
    be cross-examined.
The strange case of
Dr. Henry Lee

   Dr. Henry Lee, former Connecticut State
    criminalist, is an expert in forensic serology. His
    testimony helped gain OJ‟s acquittal.
   Two former members of Spector‟s defense team,
    attorney Sara Caplan and investigator Stanley
    White, testified that Dr. Lee took what looked like
    a fragment of an acrylic fingernail from the
    scene. It could suggest that Clarkson‟s hand
    was in front of her face, not on the trigger.
   Dr. Lee vigorously denied taking the item. But
    judge Larry Fiedler ruled that he withheld
    evidence. Prosecutors can mention the item and
    attack Dr. Lee‟s credibility if he takes the stand.
   Dr. Lee later told his hometown newspaper that
    from “from day one they (were) probably trying to
    set me up." In later comments Dr. Lee said he
    was “severely offended” by the judge‟s ruling and
    that if he testified it would be “on his schedule”
    and would cost the defense a lot of money, as he
    would be traveling in China.
Henry Lee at the O.J. trial

   Testified there was "something wrong" in how
    LAPD handled blood evidence collected at the
    crime scene that was matched to O.J.
      – Transfer stains inside containers of supposedly dry
         blood samples.
      – "Something, somebody . . . put the swatch in the
         (package to) cause such a transfer. Who did it?
         What happened? I don't know,“ he said. "Only
         opinion I can give you under these circumstances:
         Something's wrong."
   Defense argued this proved that the blood was
    tampered with. Prosecution argued any staining had
    been caused by heat buildup.
   Dr. Lee also testified to shoe prints, blood spatter and
    other evidence, in each case taking the position of the
    defense. Although his opinions were subjective and
    some were highly qualified, his testimony was
    considered devastating to the prosecution.
Victim’s computer entries,
including her diary

   The defense wants to introduce Dana Clarkson‟s “diary”
    found in her computer
   This diary, “The Story of my Life” described...
      – An interest in the occult, including visions of an actress who killed herself
      – Depression with her acting career
      – A “fascination” with guns
      – Drug problems when she was young
      – Heavy drinking
   Prosecutors knew about the diary but felt it was not trustworthy – that it could
    not be authenticated, that it could have been part of Dana Clarkson‟s work for a
    creative writing class she took. They did not give it to the coroner to use in
    evaluating the cause of death.
   There was also an e-mail to a friend, “despairing over financial problems and
    [saying that she] wanted to get her affairs in order and „chuck it‟.”
   The judge criticized prosecutors for “over-explaining” and questioned how one
    could keep the victim‟s words out of the trial. But he found diary entries made
    in the 80‟s and 90‟s too old to be relevant, so he only allowed the more recent
    e-mails to come in.
Opening statements




        April 25, 2007
Opening
statements (4/25/07)

   Prosecution: murder
     – Victim sitting with handbag, ready to leave
     – Spector told driver “I think I killed somebody”
     – Gun belonged to Spector
     – Spector used diaper to wipe blood from revolver and victim‟s face
     – Blood spray on Spector‟s jacket showed he was within three feet
     – Spector tried to wash off gunshot residue (GSR)
     – Spector used guns in past to threaten women who resisted his advances
   Defense: “accidental suicide”
     – Police jumped to conclusions
     – Victim playing, accidentally shot herself
           Loaded the gun (her DNA on cartridges)
           Limited blood spatter on Spector and absence of GSR on his right
            sleeve
     – Limo driver was sleepy, not native speaker, mistook what Spector said
     – Women to testify are “bitter ex-girlfriends” looking for money and
        notoriety
Defense lawyer
Bruce Cutler quits (8/26/07)

   Famous New York defense lawyer Bruce Cutler was
    allowed to quit the Spector defense team on 8/26,
    after testimony came to an end.
   Cutler successfully defended alleged mob boss
    John Gotti Sr. at three trials.
   Spector was concerned that the bombastic demeanor
    Cutler displayed during opening arguments and cross-examination “did not sit
    well” with the jury. He was also worried that the judge was “targeting” Cutler.
   Spector was also miffed that Cutler took time off to work on a new TV show,
    missing courtroom sessions and the jury‟s field trip to Spector‟s house.
   Cutler told the judge "I do not agree with the strategy which will be employed in
    presenting the defense in this case to the jury on summation. I can no longer
    effectively represent my client under those conditions."
Prosecution case-in-chief




            Pattern evidence
Dorothy Melvin (5/3/07)

   In 1993 she was at Spector‟s house
    and found him pointing a gun at her
    New car. When she objected he
    pointed the gun at her, ordered her back
    inside and ordered her to strip. She went inside and they argued. She
    was finally able to leave, leaving her handbag behind.
   She asked police to help her retrieve her handbag. Officers who
    responded temporarily handcuffed Spector while they helped the victim.
   Prosecutors played a message Spector left on her answering machine:
    “Be very careful what you say to me because nothing you say is worth
    your life."
   She did not report the incident to police -- she said she was Joan Rivers‟
    manager and wanted to avoid a scandal
   She stayed in touch with Spector. She never again saw him alone
Dianne Ogden (5/7/07)

   In 1989 she was leaving Spector‟s
    home after a small party when he
    ordered her back in at gunpoint to have
    sex. He “put [a gun] all over me” and
    said he would blow her brains out
    if she didn‟t spend the night. On another occasion he threatened her
    with an “Uzi” as she tied to drive away.

   She felt affection towards Spector, called him generous and charming
    and said he only turned vicious when he got drunk.

   She did not come forward voluntarily – D.A.‟s investigators tracked her
    down in Utah.
Stephanie Jennings and
Melissa Grosvenor (5/9/07)

   Stephanie Jennings
     – Two-year romance with Spector in 1990‟s.
     – In 1995 Spector got drunk at a party in a
        hotel. When she refused to have sex he slapped her, blocked the door, pointed
        a gun at her and said she could not leave. She was terrified and called police.
     – Did not think he would have purposely shot her, but feared it could have
        happened accidentally. She did not tell officers that he pointed a gun.
     – Tapes played of Spector cursing, that he would “put her out of business.”
     – She is a photographer, sold pictures of Spector to the Enquirer for $1,000.
   Melissa Grosvenor
     – In 1992 Spector flew her to Pasadena and put her up in a hotel.
     – When she tried to leave the mansion he pulled a gun, pressed it to her face and
        said “If you try to leave I'm going to kill you.” She slept on a chair.
     – Convicted in 1989 of embezzlement (stole from a bank where she worked).
     – Defense attorney said she tried to keep a sister from testifying. She said she
        only told her sister not to lie. She said that her sister was an addict and was
        being paid by Spector.
Vincent Tannazzo
Security guard (7/10/07)

   Vincent Tannazzo, a security guard
    for Joan Rivers, said he twice kicked
    out Spector from parties in the early to
    mid 90‟s, once for flaunting a gun and
    another time for being belligerent.
     – On the first occasion, Spector said that all women “deserve a
         bullet in their head.”
     – The second time, Spector said, of a woman, “I‟m gonna put a
         bullet in her head.”
     – Tannazzo admitted he never called police.
Prosecution case-in-chief




            Night of the event
Rommie Davis, Kathie Sullivan,
bartenders, security tape
(5/10, 5/14/07)

   Rommie Davis had dinner with Spector. He
    drank two daiquiries. She thought that his
    behavior had deteriorated due to drinking.
   Kathie Sullivan visited several restaurants
    and clubs with Spector later that night. They
    ended up at the House of Blues. She
    described an incident in 1997-1998 when
    Spector was seeing her and a friend off. He
    came down the stairs with a rifle or shotgun
    and escorted them to their car, saying that
    the gun was for “protection”. They thought he
    looked like Elmer Fudd.
   Spector was drinking “Navy grogs” that night,
    which contain three kinds of rum.
   Spector sent Sullivan home about 2 am.
    Security footage showed Spector and the
    victim getting into a limo about 2:24 am, less
    than three hours before her death.
Adriano DeSouza –
Spector’s driver (5/15 – 5/22/07)

   Occasionally worked as Spector‟s driver.
   Spector invited Clarkson, VIP room hostess at the
    House of Blues to the mansion. She at first
    declined because she had to work the next
    morning. She told DeSouza “just for one drink.”
    Spector yelled at her for talking to the driver.
   About 5 am DeSouza was waiting in the mansion
    driveway when he heard a “pow.” Spector
    stepped out with a gun and said “I think I killed
    somebody.” Blood dripped from a finger.
    DeSouza asked what happened and Spector
    shrugged. DeSouza walked into the mansion and
    saw the body. DeSouza drove off and called 911.
   DeSouza admitted that he once said “shot” but
    “killed” was correct. He defended his English.
    Videos of interviews indicate he understands
    English. DeSouza said he is illegally in the U.S.
    and that his deportation was deferred for the trial.
Prosecution case-in-chief



            Physical evidence
            and forensics
Coroner Dr. Louis Pena –
Cause of death (5/29 to 6/1/07)

   Positively ruled the death a homicide
     – Coroner‟s special role – to determine
        cause of death
   Circumstantial evidence
     – Spector‟s statement to driver
     – Clarkson‟s presence at a stranger‟s house
     – Clarkson‟s death by another person‟s gun
     – Only drawer opened was one containing gun
     – No history of depression or attempted suicides
     – Drugs she was taking had been prescribed by a neurologist for headaches
   Physical evidence
     – Gun was wiped down after its use
     – Left front pocket of Spector‟s pants stained with her blood
     – Tongue bruised, consistent with barrel being shoved in her mouth
     – Evidence indicates trigger pulled while the gun was inside her mouth
     – Death instantaneous, she could not exhale or cough out blood
     – Gunshot residue on her hands is expected
Dr. Louis Pena (6/4 – 6/5/07)

   Dr. Pena admitted that he did not read all her
    e-mails before ruling that her death was murder.
   Defense attorneys confronted Dr. Pena with
    excerpts from Lana Clarkson‟s recent e-mails:
     – "I'm giving up the dream and therefore the struggle“
     – "Things are pretty bad. I won't go into detail, but I'm on the verge of losing
         it all" (She was heavily in debt, suffered from severe headaches and was
         in pain from breaking her arms in a fall.)
   When the prosecutor read longer passages from the e-mails, placing these
    comments in context, Dr. Pena said that her talk about “giving it up” meant
    giving up on her acting career, not suicide.
   Dr. Pena also noted that she made plenty of positive comments, wrote of future
    plans and sent holiday greetings. He found no basis for changing his opinion
    on the cause of death.
Det. Mark Lillienfeld –
Murder weapon, motive (6/5/07)

   “Unregistered” murder weapon found next to
    victim. Open drawer in nearby table had a
    matching holster. Same ammunition found in
    home and two other revolvers found upstairs.
   Gun wiped of blood; bloody diaper in bath.
   Shotgun resembling gun used to threaten
    Dorothy Melvin also found upstairs.
   Many phones in residence -- none were used
    to call for help
   Dark interior, lit candles, alcohol, brandy
    snifter, ginger ale, Viagra suggest sexual
    motive
   Defense attorney criticized failure to use of
    hairnets and booties to prevent contamination
   No evidence that victim‟s clothes were ripped
    or torn
Criminalist Steve Renteria –
Blood evidence (6/12/07)

   Spector‟s DNA not found under Clarkson‟s
    nails (goes against theory of a struggle)
   Small amount of Spector‟s DNA found on her
    left breast, and DNA which is to a much lesser
    certainty hers in Spector‟s groin area
      – Suggests sexual contact (consensual?)
   Only Clarkson‟s DNA found on the gun.
      – Touching can transfer DNA, so defense
          says this rules out Spector holding the gun
      – According to Renteria, DNA from victim‟s
          blood would overwhelm DNA deposited by
          someone who might have held the gun.
   No blood spatter found on floor or walls
      – Consistent with someone standing in front
          of Clarkson when the shot was fired
Hairs, fibers, fingerprints,
firearm (6/13 – 6/18)

   Acetate tape used to lift hairs and fibers from
    victim‟s dress
     – Procedure criticized by defense for
         disturbing blood patterns
     – Criminalist said she was careful to stay
         away from the blood
   Photos of Clarkson‟s hands “did not turn out” –
    cannot tell if it‟s spatter or freckles on her hand
   No fingerprints at all found on murder weapon
    or ammunition
     – Criminalist testified that usable prints are
         rarely recovered from firearms
   Firearms expert
     – Ammunition used to kill the victim was rare
         and identical to other ammo in the home
     – Gun used in the killing could not go off
         unless someone pulled the trigger
     – Gun discharged inside victim‟s mouth
Dr. Lynne Herold –
LASD Crime Lab (6/19 – 6/20)

   Clarkson‟s body was moved and tampered with
     – Victim‟s blood was on the gun. Blood on
        raised surfaces was smeared, as though the
        gun was wiped down.
     – Blood on Clarkson's face was also smeared.
        A bloody diaper found in the bathroom may
        have been used to wipe her face and/or gun.
     – Bloodstain on the chair shows that her head
        was turned from right to left. Victim did not
        do this -- the gunshot was incapacitating.
     – Purse was hanging on her shoulder
        backwards, an awkward way to carry
     – Blood stains inside Spector‟s pants pocket
        suggest he put the gun there
   Spatter patterns on Spector‟s clothes show he
    was within two to three feet.
     – Citing studies, defense said spatter from a
        shot in a contained area could go to seven
        feet. Dr. Herold said studies were not real-
        world (one used a sponge).
Attorney Sara Caplan (7/10/07)
Det. Richard Tomlin, LASD (7/23/07)


   Caplan was found in contempt by Judge
    Fiedler for reusing to testify and was
    threatened with jail.
   After the California Supreme Court refused
    to hear her appeal, Caplan testified that
    she called Dr. Lee‟s attention to a small
    white object on the floor and that he placed it in a vial.
      – She said was the size of a fingernail. The defense claims this is too large
         an item to be the fragment of an acrylic fingernail missing from one of
         Clarkson‟s fingers.
   Det. Tomlin testified that no such object was ever turned over to investigators.
Defense



   Physical evidence
   and forensics
Dr. Vincent J. DiMaio –
Forensic Pathologist (6/26 – 29)

   Prominent retired Chief Medical Examiner
   "People...try to make suicides homicides.”
   Physical evidence proves she shot herself
     – Spatter can go six feet or more; patterns
        on Spector‟s clothes show he was far away
     – Bruising of tongue and body movement
        caused by expanding gun gases
     – Her hands had much more gunshot residue
        than Spector‟s. She also had tissue on her
        arms and blood spatter on her hands.
     – She was depressed, used alcohol and drugs
     – "She's the one who fired the gun...and
        probably didn't think of the consequences.
        It was...stupid...based on alcohol.”
     – Spector was too weak to overpower her –
        she could have easily taken the gun away
     – Conceded that most suicides don‟t shoot
        themselves in the mouth and rarely kill
        themselves outside their homes
Robert Middleberg – forensic
toxicologist (7/18/07)
Stuart James – blood spatter (7/23/07)


   Middleberg said it was impossible to tell if
    Spector was drunk the night of Clarkson‟s death
     – Urine tests can over-estimate BAC
     – Without conducting experiments on the
        person in question one cannot say if a 135-pound man would
        become drunk after consuming, in one night, “a daiquiri, two Navy
        Grogs containing three shots of liquor in each, and four additional
        drinks.”
   James said there is no consensus among experts on how far spatter
    can travel from an intra-oral wound
     – Estimates range from inches to as much as six feet depending on
        the size of blood drops and how much force or pressure was
        involved
Dr. Werner Spitz,
forensic pathologist (7/25-27/07)

   Former Detroit chief medical examiner.
    testified in Kennedy assassination. Wrote a
    text used in medical schools. Gets $5,000/day.
   Clarkson‟s wound self-inflicted
      – Drinking and prescription painkiller could
         have impaired Clarkson‟s judgment
      – Wounds to mouth almost always suicide
      – Blood and gunpowder on her hands, tissue
         on her sleeves indicates self-inflicted
      – Gunshot caused bruising in mouth
      – “Last cough” when artery was broken and
         force of gunshot like a “fire hose”, sprayed
         blood/tissue 6 feet +. Spector would have
         had more blood on him if he was close.
   Prosecutor asked why none of the victim‟s
    sprayed blood was on the rug or furniture. Dr.
    Spitz said he couldn‟t comment as he didn‟t
    see the other evidence.
Dr. Jan Leetsma
Neuropathologist (8/8/07)

   Clarkson‟s position, slumped with legs out,
    is consistent with suicide.
   Bodies can spasm hours after death (cited doctor
    reports about persons guillotined during the
    French Revolution.
   Cannot determine whether Clarkson‟s death was murder or suicide
   But -- persons cannot exhale blood five seconds after a fatal shot
Dr. Michael Baden
pathologist (8/14-16/07)

   Clarkson did not die instantly because her
    spinal cord was not completely severed. She
    lived for several minutes after the shot.
      – This explains why she could cough out
         blood, and at a distance
      – She might have done it while Spector was trying to help her, thus
         explaining the stains on his jacket
   No medical evidence that Spector‟s finger was on the trigger
   “To a reasonable degree of medical certainty” the wound was self-inflicted
      – Broken fingernail indicates her thumb was on the trigger
      – Mouth wound is characteristic of suicides
   Vigorous prosecutor cross-examination
      – Baden accused of tailoring his explanation, of waiting until the last moment
         to bring up the spinal cord issue. But Baden said he only thought of it
         issue over the weekend. He called it an “ah ha!” moment
      – Baden is the husband of Spector attorney Linda Baden. He insists that
         however the trial comes out is of no consequence to him.
      – Baden‟s fee will total $120,000
Defense




   Mental state
John Barons, playwright
David Schapiro, friend (7/10/07)

   Barons said that Clarkson was not very talented
     – Only cast her in a production because she
        had Hollywood contacts and he hoped they
        would come see the play and recognize his
        talent. Agreed this was “pretty shallow” on his part.
     – He eventually fired her because she was “erratic” and “demanding”
   Schapiro gave police e-mails he received from Clarkson
     – “I am truly at the end of this deal. I am going to tidy up my affairs and
        chuck it, because it is really all too much for one girl to bear anymore.”
     – “I‟ll have to bite the bullet and start doing amateur strip contests.”
   Schapiro agreed that Clarkson often exaggerated
     – He didn‟t worry about her being suicidal
Jennifer Hayes-Riedl
Clarkson’s friend (7/11-12/07)

   Clarkson “was absolutely out of her mind
    depressed” about money and her career
     – Borrowed clothes to wear at work
     – Broke up with a man she hoped “was the one”
     – Did not have money for rent or food
     – Drank too much and combined painkillers and alcohol
   Clarkson “never gave up hope” that “it” (a successful career) would happen
   Clarkson knew how to use guns
     – Appeared in roles where guns were used
     – Went shooting at the Beverly Hills Gun Club
   Described a prospective defense witness, Punklin Laughlin, as someone “who
    can‟t remember anything”
     – She accompanied Laughlin to meet with a defense investigator to help
        remind her of things
Punklin Laughlin –
Clarkson’s friend (7/12, 7/16-18)

   Claimed to be Clarkson‟s “soulmate.”
   Talked to Clarkson on phone a few days
    before her death. Clarkson said "I don't want
    to live anymore. I don't want to live in this town. I want to end it.“
   Clarkson used drugs and alcohol. She was “despondent” over her failed
    acting career and money problems.
   Clarkson broke down when movie director Michael Bay didn‟t recognize her
   On cross-examination Laughlin said...
      – She didn‟t mention the phone call or depression to detectives because
          she had been warned to have a lawyer when talking with police and sidn‟t
          want to hurt anyone
      – Admitted she spoke with a publicist and a writer after her friend‟s death.
      – Denied her testimony might be biased because she promotes a nightclub
          partly owned by a friend of Spector.
      – Denied ever saying “we need to fry that bastard for killing Clarkson”
   Prosecution later introduced a letter where Laughlin wrote: “My Lana...my
    sister...was violently taken from me at the hands of Phil Spector."
Gregory Sims, Clarkson’s friend (7/24/07)
Richard Munisteri, lawyer, House of Blues (7/31/07)
LASD computer analyst Thomas Fortier (8/1/07)
Donna Clarkson, Lana Clarkson’s mother (8/13/07)


   Sims is an independent producer, had a “platonic” relationship with Clarkson.
    Spoke with her a week before her death
     – She was despairing of her love life and career
     – Prosecutor asked if Clarkson was one of those people trying to make it in
         the entertainment business who had “hope and perseverance.” Sims said
         yes.
   Munisteri said that Clarkson made $9/hour as a hostess
   Fortier searched Clarkson‟s computer for "murder," "depression" and "suicide.“
     – Keyword “depression” appeared twice, once in an Oct. „02 message from
         her to a friend, "The depression level I am experiencing makes me very
         spent and worn out,“ and in an e-mail to her about depression screening at
         Cedars-Sinai Medical Center
     – Keyword “suicide” did not appear on her computer
   Donna Clarkson found forged letters of reference from prominent entertainment
    executives in her daughter‟s home
     – Defense claims Lana Clarkson intended to use them to obtain a loan
Prosecution rebuttal
Patrick Terzian, Clarkson’s agent (8/1-6/07)
Nili Hudson, Clarkson’s friend (8/2/07)
Michael Bay, film director (8/6/07)
Donna Clarkson, Lana’s mother (8/13/07)


   Terzian said Clarkson was not “over-the-hill”
      – She was a “successful working actress”,
         “beautiful, outgoing and talented”
      – Just before her death she was “ecstatic” about two new modeling jobs
   Hudson said Clarkson was not depressed in the weeks preceding her death and
    that it was “absurd” to think her suicidal
      – In 10/02 she came out of a serious fall with two broken wrists “excited...
         happy....like she'd always been: hard-working, tenacious, a self-starter.“
      – Clarkson was going shopping for shoes that would be easier on her feet
      – Received a note from Punkin Pie Laughlin that said: “My Lana, my best
         friend...was violently taken from me at the hands of Phil Spector."
      – Hudson admitted that she thought Spector was “absolutely guilty”
   Bay was asked about Punkin Pie Laughlin‟s assertion that Clarkson broke down
    when he didn‟t recognize her at a party
      – He knew Clarkson well and had used her for a Mercedes commercial
      – Clarkson was “funny” & “saucy”. He would not have purposely snubbed her
   Donna Clarkson said she went shopping for shoes with Lana Clarkson the
    afternoon of her death. Her daughter bought seven pairs.
Devra Robitaille
Former employee, friend, lover (8/21/07)


   Employed by Spector at his record label in
    the late 70‟s
   Had an affair with him (she was married)
   Spector, who had been drinking, tried to keep her from leaving a party
    at his house. This happened in the 1970‟s.
     – He locked the door, then pointed a shotgun at her and threatened
        to blow her head off. The barrel touched her temple. It felt cold.
     – She told him to put the gun down, and he did. He unlocked the
        door and let her out.
   He threatened her again with a shotgun in 1986, at another party
   She did not think he would actually shoot her
   She was paid $9,000 for media interviews in Great Britain about this
    case
Dr. John Andrews,
neuropathologist (8/22/07)

   Bullet hit spinal cord dead center. Very unlikely that
    cord was not completely severed.
   Clarkson could not have “breathed, coughed, spit or moved” after this took
    place
     – It was “inconceivable,“ “impossible“ and “not medically reasonable“ that
         she could have “lingered” or coughed blood after the bullet transected her
         spinal cord.
     – Humans are not like chickens, who can run around after their heads are
         cut off. Transection “abolishes” human reflexes.
   The examples given of those guillotined during the French Revolution relates
    only to muscle contractions, not to the circumstances in this case
Defense surebuttal
Dr. Werner Spitz,
forensic pathologist (8/23/07)

   Clarkson‟s lugs had some air left, indicating she
    took a breath after the gunshot
   Gun caliber not large, may not have completely
    severed the spinal cord. Enough of a connection left to transmit an electrical
    impulse that resulted in a cough, accounting for blood spatter on Spector‟s
    jacket.
   Spinal cord damage noted at autopsy was “compounded” by the body being
    moved from the scene
Miscellaneous and closing

               Jury visits scene
               Competing view of physical
                evidence
               Closing arguments
               Verdict
               Sentencing
Jury visits mansion
(8/9/07)

   Spector “welcomed” jurors to the mansion.
    He was dressed casually.
   Jurors toured some of the mansion‟s rooms.
    Photos were displayed to help them connect these rooms to trial testimony.
   Jurors were allowed to:
     – Sit in a chair just like the chair where Clarkson sat, trying to recreate the
        position in which she was found.
     – Sit in a car positioned where the limo was parked when the shot was fired.
   Jurors were not allowed to:
     – See the room where Spector‟s blood-spattered jacket was found
     – Sit in a car in a driveway with the windows closed and A/C on
     – Listen from outside when someone set off a loud noise in the mansion with
        the doors closed.
   Jurors spent about an hour at the mansion.
Charge – 2nd. Degree Murder

   Jury will decide only on this charge
   Murder (187a PC): “Murder is the unlawful killing of
    a human being, or a fetus, with malice aforethought.”
   Malice (188 PC): “Such malice may be express or implied.
      – It is express when there is manifested a deliberate intention unlawfully to
         take away the life of a fellow creature.
      – It is implied, when no considerable provocation appears, or when the
         circumstances attending the killing show an abandoned and malignant
         heart.”
   Proving that someone not acting in self-defense knowingly pointed a loaded
    gun at another person may be enough to establish malice (see later slide)
   Degrees of murder (189 PC): “All murder which is...willful, deliberate, and
    premeditated...is murder of the first degree. All other kinds of murders are of
    the second degree.”
   Penalty for 2nd. Degree murder is 15 years to life. 85% of the sentence must be
    served.
Competing views of physical evidence
Los Angeles Times, 8/13/07


   Diaper soaked in blood
     – Prosecution: Spector used it to wipe blood from gun
     – Defense: Spector used it to staunch Clarkson‟s bleeding
   Up to 18 tiny drops of Clarkson‟s blood found on Spector‟s jacket
     – Prosecution: places Spector up close, within three feet
     – Defense: if he was that close his jacket would have been soaked in blood
   Blood on Spector‟s trousers
     – Prosecution: blood inside pocket shows Spector put the gun there
     – Defense: lack of blood on trouser legs shows he was standing far away
   Blood on Clarkson on her dress, not her extended legs
     – Prosecution: proves blood spatter was short-range
     – Defense: her legs splayed out later, when she slumped in the chair
   Gun found under Clarkson‟s left ankle (she was right-handed)
     – Prosecution: if she held gun it would have fallen on the other side
     – Defense: police moved the gun

                             See next slide for defense “10 points”
Defense 10 points, argued during closing




         Source: Los Angeles Times, 9/10/07
Prosecution’s
closing argument (9/5/07)

   Emphasized driver‟s statement, forensic
    evidence and pattern testimony
   Criticized “experts”: “If you hire enough
    lawyers who hire enough experts who are
    paid enough money, you can get them to
    say anything”
   Said that the conclusions of the three
    defense pathologists (Spitz, DiMaio, Baden)
    were identical and filed within five days of
    each other – “a script”
   Defense witnesses had different
    explanations for how the victim came to
    shoot herself
   Doesn‟t matter whether the gun discharged
    accidentally, on purpose or during a
    struggle. Do not have to prove intent to kill.
Defense closing argument
by Atty. Linda Baden (9/6/07)
Case goes to jury (9/10/07)


   “Isn‟t it interesting that the prosecution never
    told you how this could have happened?”
      – “Who put the gun in Lana Clarkson's
         mouth and who pulled the trigger?”
      – Answer: Lana Clarkson
   Great emphasis on concept of reasonable
    doubt, as raised by...
      – Clarkson‟s suicidal tendencies
      – Reports that almost all intra-oral
         gunshot wounds are self-inflicted
      – Limited amount of blood spatter on
         Spector‟s jacket
      – Absence of blood on Spector's cuffs
      – Claims that blood spatter could have
         traveled six feet: "Every inch back from
         that 2 ½ feet is an inch of doubt...
         here...there are feet of doubt."
Jury reaches an impasse
on the seventh day

   After six days of deliberation the jury asked
    for clarification of reasonable doubt. All the
    judge can legally do is repeat the instruction.
   Later that day jurors reported they were split
    7-5, with the direction not stated. Nine said
    the split was final, three that it was not.
   When questioned by the judge, several
    jurors said they were confused by special
    instruction number 3 (see later slides.)
   Judge Fiedler sent them home. He
    considered including a lesser offense of
    manslaughter (see next slide).
      – Defense vigorously objected
      – Prosecution was in favor
   Judge Fiedler later changed his mind,
    fearing that the jury might feel pressured to
    find guilt on manslaughter.
Distinguishing between murder
and manslaughter
Los Angeles Times, 9/19/07


   Jurors were told that to find Spector guilty of
    murder, they had to conclude he acted
    "deliberately with conscious disregard for
    human life.“
   Manslaughter requires recklessness, but not knowledge of a threat to life.
   California jurors often look for the "I don't care" attitude.
     – "If you can show they were aware a life could be lost, yet in the face of
         that, exhibited that 'I just don't give a damn whether this person dies or not'
         attitude, then a [murder] conviction becomes a real possibility...If jurors can
         see reason or logic, despite recklessness, they often opt for manslaughter,
         rather than murder.”
     – Recklessness: A driver late for a job interview tries to pass a car on a blind
         curve across a double yellow line. He collides with an oncoming car and
         kills the driver.
     – Murder: A game of Russian roulette, where one person spins the gun‟s
         cylinder and presses the barrel against another‟s temple. The clear
         awareness that a life could be lost makes the survivor a murderer.
Redrawn jury instructions

   On the afternoon of 9/20/07 Judge Fiedler
    withdrew special instruction no. 3 (next slide).
   He replaced it with a new instruction: To convict
    Spector it must be proven that he did something
    like...
      – Place the gun in Clarkson‟s mouth or forced
          her to place the gun in her mouth at which
          time the gun discharged;
      – Pointed the gun at Clarkson to prevent her
          from leaving the house, causing a struggle,
          at which time the gun discharged
   Fiedler said these are only some of the
    inferences that jurors might draw from the
    evidence. He also reminded the jury about
    implied malice.
   Defense called the instruction coercive, an
    attempt to “unscramble an egg”.
   Legal experts agree that it presents the jury with
    more options for finding Spector guilty.
Special instruction number 3
   “As I have instructed you, to be guilty of the crime of which the
    defendant is accused, second degree murder, the defendant
    must have committed an act that caused the death of Lana
    Clarkson. It is the prosecution‟s contention that the act
    committed by the defendant that caused the death of Ms.
    Clarkson was (to) point a gun at her, which resulted in the gun
    entering Ms. Clarkson‟s mouth while in Mr. Spector‟s hand. The
    prosecution bears the burden of proving that defendant Spector
    committed that act. If you do not find that the prosecution has
    proved beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant
    committed that act, you must return a verdict of not guilty.”
   The prosecution originally objected to this instruction because it
    did not take into account other ways in which Clarkson might
    have died; for example, in a struggle over the gun.
Mistrial
   On 9/26, after 10 full days of deliberation,
    the jury hung 10-2 for conviction. Judge
    Fiedler declared a mistrial. The D.A.‟s office
    said the case would be retried.
   The foreman, who was one of two who voted
    for acquittal, said these factors played a role:
      – Prosecution did not effectively counter the defense experts and other witnesses
         who suggested Clarkson might have committed suicide. He said a
         “psychological autopsy” should have been done.
      – Prosecution did not establish that Spector had held the gun when Clarkson was
         shot
      – The driver‟s testimony was undercut by his videotaped remark to police that his
         English was not perfect and that he was not positive about what he heard
   Analysts credit Phil Spector‟s wealth for the hung jury
      – He could afford a large, first-class defense team of seven lawyers, several
         investigators and a number of expert witnesses

								
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