Phil Spector is an enigma in anyone’s book I would think. But, he was integral to a chunk of Beatles history when the Beatles were in transition to their post-Beatles careers. After Phil Spector created the Wall of Sound for John Lennon’s Instant Karma, he was asked to fix up the mess that was Get Back, which became the mess of Let It Be. Paul hated the string overdubs Spector did to many of the tracks. But George and John both went on to work with Spector, who produced All Things Must Pass, Plastic Ono Band, and Imagine. It is apparently during sessions with John Lennon that Spector was said to have brought a gun into the studio. In fact, that may have been in evidence in the trial in some ways, that he was, well, not quite right. I laugh, remembering John Lennon telling the story of how Spector called up Lennon saying “he’d got the tapes, he got the tapes”, that is, the John Dean/Watergate tapes. Even Lennon recognized something was a bit off about Spector, and laughed about it.
Well, the first trial didn’t go so well, but the retrial has lots of motions coming up. So, what goes on now with this ever twisting murder mystery that is Lana Clarkson and Phil Spector?
Here’s what we’ve read:
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Phil Spector’s new defense team lost a series of pretrial motions Tuesday, but the judge promised to reconsider some of his rulings if it becomes necessary during the music producer’s second murder trial.
Spector, famed for his “Wall of Sound” recording technique in the 1960s, is accused of shooting actress Lana Clarkson, 40, at his Alhambra mansion on Feb. 3, 2003. The defense has claimed Clarkson shot herself, either accidentally or on purpose. A jury deadlocked last year and Spector, 69, is facing a retrial this fall.
Superior Court Judge Larry Paul Fidler rejected a defense claim that Spector will be in double jeopardy if the jury considers the lesser included offenses of voluntary or involuntary manslaughter. In the first trial, he had ruled there was insufficient evidence for jurors to find Spector guilty of those crimes.
Fidler did not immediately rule on a defense motion to bar instructions on the lesser included crimes but said, “I don’t believe this is a double jeopardy matter.”
He also turned down a defense bid to exclude a videotape of testimony from a witness who has died. The prosecution asked to use a televised version of the testimony of Dianne Ogden, one of Spector’s former love interests who said he threatened her with a gun.
But the judge noted that he has not yet ruled whether testimony of Ogden and five other women will be admissible in the new trial. If it is admitted, he said the videotape of the dead woman would be the most accurate way to present her testimony to the jury.
“It is the only way to show demeanor,” he said.
Fidler scheduled another motions hearing for Aug. 14.
And we read even more about the same thing:
Judge in Phil Spector retrial to rule on testimony alleging past gun threatsThe defense is asking to bar what it calls ‘the most damaging evidence’ facing the music producer in the Lana Clarkson murder trial — the testimony of 5 women who say he menaced them with guns.A judge is set to decide key matters of evidence this morning in the retrial of Phil Spector on charges of murdering an actress.
Lawyers for the legendary music producer have asked Superior Court Judge Larry P. Fidler to bar what the defense calls “the most damaging evidence” — the testimony of five women who claim Spector menaced them with guns in the decades before Lana Clarkson’s 2003 death.
The women were among the most dramatic, emotional witnesses at Spector’s trial, which ended in a hung jury in September.
Prosecutors are seeking to add a sixth woman to their witness list. According to court papers, investigators tracked down Norma Kemper, a former personal assistant for Spector, after his trial. She claims that when she rebuffed Spector’s romantic advances during a 1996 dinner, he displayed a gun and said, “You know I could kill you right now.”
Spector is accused in the fatal shooting of Clarkson, 40, in the foyer of his Alhambra mansion. Spector claims Clarkson killed herself.
The defense is also seeking to limit expert testimony from prosecution forensic witnesses, including the medical examiner who ruled Clarkson’s death a homicide and a criminalist who said blood evidence put Spector within three feet of the gun blast.