CA vs. Spector – Bay Will Get His Own Slice of the Pie
Posted by thedarwinexception on August 1, 2007
Court begins with more whining and haranguing from the defense. They have just a couple of witnesses scheduled for the day, and since the prosecution is ready to move forward with their rebuttal case, they may have to spend the afternoon crossing these witnesses, and they aren’t happy about it, as they’ve only just now gotten the list and they don’t recognize a lot of the names: Patty O’Neill, Bruce Liverpool, Michael Bay, Nick Terzian, Kim Gregory….
The prosecution reminds the defense that it was the defense’s speeding up and paring down of their intended witness list that forced the prosecution to have the list ready earlier than they had anticipated, and the fact that the defense has not had time to investigate the witnesses is not due to any lack of cooperation on the part of the prosecution. Alan Jackson tells the defense that he, himself, has not even interviewed many of the witnesses, and that there are a few names on the list that the defense should be more than familiar with – such as Bruce Liverpool, who, according to Liverpool, the defense has already interviewed. Liverpool apparently told the prosecution team that a woman who looked hauntingly similar to Tawni Tyndall came by the Fire Station where he works as a EMT and talked to him – all the while holding herself out to be a civil attorney.
The defense concedes that yeah, ok, they know who Liverpool is, but what about Michael Bay? They have no idea what this witness is going to say, which makes the Judge interject and ask the defense team if they are kidding or what? The judge says “If you don’t know what Bay is going to testify to – I mean, I assume you read the papers, he basically testified in the newspaper – this *can’t* be a surprise to you, he has said that he denies having a meeting with Lana Clarkson and he denies that there was ever a party he attended where he did not recognize her. I read the papers, and you can too.”
Of course, all of this is a little disingenuous on the part of the defense. Jackson points out to them, rightfully so, that the witnesses on the list are pretty much all people who were first brought up by the defense in their own witnesses testimony – and that the prosecution hasn’t actually had loads of time to interview these people, either. It wasn’t that long ago that Punkin Pie testified concerning Michael Bay, and the most that Jackson has interviewed him was in a brief telephone conversation. He gives Mr. Rosen his Michael Bay “interview” right then and there: “I’ve never met Mr. Bay – I talked to him on the phone – I said “were you at this party, did you have this conversation?” He said ” No and No” – that’s my report, Mr. Rosen.”.
This is all just more stalling on the part of the defense, who can sense that the end is near, and they haven’t had their “AHA!” moment yet, the science *hasn’t* proven the 10 things Linda Kenny Baden promised in her opening statement were going to scientifically show that Lana pulled the trigger herself, and neither of the heavy hitters they promised the jury, Mr. Linda Kenny Baden nor Henry Lee have materialized as witnesses on the stand. I think the defense fears they are on a sinking ship and they are floundering around on deck as long as they can in case a deck chair floats by they might be able to grab onto.
Linda Kenny Baden then gets up to complain that “Mr. Hayes” won’t give her the reports of some retrieval he did on Lana Clarkson’s computer, citing “privilege”. She says she needs to review these reports, and would appreciate someone asking him to turn them over to the defense. The judge asks if Mr. Hayes is here, and she says he is in the hall. The Judge says “Bring him in here, I’ll take care of it.” Hayes comes in, while the judge quips that “Some parts of the job are so fun…” and when Hayes enters the court, the judge says “Do you have reports?” when Mr. Hayes says yes, the judge says “Give them to the defense, please.” And that’s the end of the fun part of the job for the day for Judge Fidler.
The defense finally calls their first witness of the day, and Linda Kenny Baden starts the direct testimony of Thomas Fortier, a member of the Hi Tech task force of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. The Task Force he is
involved with is a interdepartmental and inter Governmental agency organization that does things like combat copyright infringements, investigates computer
intrusions (hacking) and performs forensic investigations of computers and cell phones. Pretty much the coolest job ever, besides Forensic Pathologist or plain old “lawyer”, to my thinking. His job is a lot more interesting than his testimony, that’s for sure.
Linda Kenny Baden takes him through his receiving Lana Clarkson’s laptop, and his retrieval of the information stored on the hard drive. He made a back up copy of the drive, then found that he couldn’t actually retrieve any of the data. He took the drive to the Secret Service to see if they could help, but they couldn’t. Apparently, Lana’s laptop had a bad CMOS battery, which meant that every time she turned off her computer, the dates would revert to the default date in the CMOS, which in this case was 1904. Not all of the emails had this problem, but some did and Fortier was only able to date some of them by going back to AOL and retrieving the original emails from them. And I think the defense dropped the ball on this one, because this is the very *FIRST* evidence at all they have had in this trial that Lana committed suicide, and they ignored it. Lana was a member of AOL. Reason to shoot yourself? Well, hey, it’s a more believable reason than that she was 40 and washed up. And Helen Mirren, latest Academy Award winner for “Best Actress in a Starring Role” would probably agree with me.
So Linda Kenny Baden takes the witness through the fact that Lana had 3,533 saved emails in her “incoming mail” folder and 1,932 in her sent file, which spanned the years 2000-2003. And there were also 1485 corrupted emails that no dates could be determined for.
Fortier was asked to do a keyword search on all of these emails to find any references to “murder”, “suicide” and “depression” and also any references to Phil Spector.
Out of all these 7,000 emails they found 3. An entire 3 emails that referenced the given keywords. Which actually scared me a little, because when Paul throws me in that wood chipper and they do a keyword search on my computer, they are going to be absolutely convinced that I’m some kind of raving fucking lunatic maniac. And they are going to find a lot more references to “murder” than just 3 emails. Of course, they are also going to find that I had a severe problem with my penis not being large enough, but that’s another story.
So one of the 3 incriminating emails was to a Mr. Peter Anderson, and referenced the word “depression”, one was a Screen Actor Guild email that referenced “Suicide” and a third email referenced “manic depressive”. But Linda Kenny Baden never actually reads or shows us the emails, so I guess we just have to trust that they are in context and actually do reference the keywords Fortier says that they do.
And I wonder about the keyword search, too. Fortier says he looked for emails and links and searches and cookies and such that referenced these three words, but “suicide” is a rather vague term. I mean, if I was going to write someone, a friend especially, in a an email sort of environment, would I actually say “Oh, I’m so depressed, I feel like committing suicide” or would I be more informal than that and something like ” I’m so down, I feel like just killing myself.” I don’t think a keyword search would find the words “depressed” or “killing myself” if I tell it to look for “depression” and “suicide”. But, they’re the experts.
Jackson gets up to cross and elicits that if you do a keyword search on specific terms and you have a Britannica Encyclopedia installed, the keyword search will pick up those references included in that software, as well. (And suddenly Fortier’s job isn’t looking like so much fun anymore to me). Jackson also has the witness testify about a desktop computer and a second laptop and zip drives and other removable drives he also did searches on – these all belonging to Phil Spector. Jackson doesn’t ask if they did a keyword search on “Fucking cunts” and “bullets in their heads”.
Jackson then gets into a little more detail on those three incriminating emails and we learn that the SAG email was a mass mailing sent to all SAG members, informing them that SAG, along with Cedar Sinai hospital was sponsoring a depression screening. Suicide was never actually mentioned in the text or subject header of the email – “depression” was – so that in the entirety of the hard drive, “suicide” never appeared even one time.
Jackson then turns to the second email and gets the witness to actually read the line that references “manic depressive” and we find that Lana was talking about a third party when she said that.
On re direct Baden points out that the second email did mention depression with regards to Lana in the line before the one read on cross. Lana said in the email that she had tons of follow up and promotional things to get through but with her depression level lately, she was finding it hard to get through it. Not exactly a serious cry for help or reason to call the suicide hotline, but I guess it will have to do since that’s all they retrieved from the computer. I mean, the witness didn’t mention that he found an email that said “Hi! This is Lana, I just signed up for eHarmony – I said in my profile “Tall beautiful blonde who wants to commit suicide seeking misogynistic man with gun!” so one has to assume nothing like that was found.
Baden also points out that although the SAG email was a mass mailing, Lana didn’t delete it. She also asks if the witness did keyword searches on “hurt myself”, “drugs” “tequila” “alcohol” or “sobriety” and the witness answers “No” to each.
Re-cross is brief – with Jackson simply pointing out that although Lana kept the SAG email, the RSVP date for the depression screening was 6/09/02, 8 months before she died.
Our next witness is George Wendt’s younger self, although he says his name is Daniel Haste, and in this case, Haste does makes Waste, because although I watched this guy’s testimony, then backed up the TiVo and watched it again, and then again, I still have no Earthly idea why he was called.
The only interesting thing he said was that he just met Linda Kenny Baden this morning, and only a couple of days ago gave the defense his report, which makes the defense’s earlier claims of “we need tiiiiiiiiimmmme to investigate the rebuttal witnesses!” look like the lame excuse it is.
So George Wendt Jr. is an “Information Technical Consultant” and programmer – he worked on the hard drive from Lana’s computer and found that she had documents in her printer spool, which Linda Kenny Baden seemed to think was the most nefarious and incriminating thing she had ever heard of since she learned that 3 emails out of 10,000 had the word ‘depression” in them.
I don’t get it, folks. I really don’t. I always have crap in my printer spool – mostly because when I right click on something I sometimes hit “Print” instead of “send to” or “save as” or “unzip”. I go in and hit cancel and sometimes – yes, sometimes, and this might be nefarious, but, *I fail to delete it from my printer spool*.
One entertaining thing about this witness was the fact that when asked by the DA to print off some of the email messages on the hard drive, he had to go out and buy a printer. The guy is an “Information Technical Consultant” and doesn’t own a printer:? I think it’s a really good thing this guy wasn’t murdered prior to his buying a printer – he probably had a lot of things in his printer spool just waiting until he got one – and we *know* what that means.
The only other entertaining thing about this witness is that Baden started treating him like a hostile witness when he slipped and said that he referred to Lana in his reports as a “murder victim”. Baden’s attitude got her a little dressing down from the judge, and Jackson, smiling and loving that Baden did his job for him, said “No thank you” when asked if he wanted to question the witness.
The next witness to be called is Nicole Spector – the biological daughter of Phil Spector and one of his former assistants that he married. Not the current former assistant that he married – one of the other ones. There was a long sidebar before she was called – presumably to severely limit the scope of the questioning. If she starts testifying about what a great family man and father Phil is, that would open the door to a 3 month long rebuttal parade of witnesses, including the three sons Phil adopted, neglected, abused and then abandoned.
Nicole takes the stand and introduces herself as Nicole Spector, 24 years old, the daughter of Phil. She’s a very cute, poised, articulate girl. Baden asks her if she has ever “observed” her father, and she says yes, that she lived with him the first 8 years of her life, and then spent time with him as he picked her up from school every day when she was a teen. Which I kind of doubt he actually did – he may have sent a driver and limo to pick her up, but I doubt Phil actually went himself to pick her up. The judge intervenes a couple of times when Baden repeatedly asks about different time periods in Nicole’s life and if she “observed” him, and Nicole slyly manages to testify that she observed him every night when he went to her mother’s house for dinner and then they all watched “All in the Family”. Which must have been re-runs, since it went off the air in 1983 (as “Archie Bunker’s Place”), when Nicole was only a year old.
The judge intervenes again when Nicole slips this in and tells Baden to “get on with it”, which she does when she manages to elicit the Earth shattering information that Phil is right handed, as observed b Nicole when he ate with his right hand and owned guitars that were right handed. Baden also asks if Phil plays the piano with his right hand or left hand, and Nicole says she has never seen him play the piano, but it was a stupid fucking question, anyway, since you play piano with *both* hands, unless you only like have one hand or something. I half expected Baden to follow up Nicole’s pronouncement that she had never seen her father play the piano with “Well, the pianos that he owns – are they right handed or left handed pianos?”
Jackson passes on crossing this witness, as well. Which is a shame. I think it would have been well within the scope for Jackson to have asked this witness “have you ever observed your father shoot a gun with his left hand? What about his right?”
The defense then announces that they have no more witnesses at this time, and the judge asks them “at all?” and they offer that they have a Mr. Bennet to call, but they haven’t done the foundational work for him yet, and one wonders if the judge might not tell them to stop going to so many damned weddings and graduations every Thursday and start prepping their witnesses, but he just looks at them disgustedly and decides that since the prosecution is ready to proceed with their rebuttal case, that’s what will happen, whether or not the defense has had time to interview and investigate these witnesses.
The judge then informs the jury that the defense may or may not have a couple more witnesses, that hasn’t been decided, but that the prosecution will begin their rebuttal case after lunch.
The first rebuttal witness the prosecution calls is Bruce Liverpool. He is here to rebut the testimony of the defense witness Daniel Stark. Together they were the two attending paramedics who responded to the call the night that Lana slipped on the carpet and broke both of her wrists. Stark had testified that although he thought Lana was intoxicated that evening, the box documenting this was not checked off on the 902M form because he was not the attending paramedic that evening, his partner was. This is his partner.
Liverpool testifies that he did not think Lana was intoxicated, and that although he has no specific memory of Lana, and even after seeing pictures of her on the news he still has no specific memory of her, he would have checked off the box indicating that she had alcohol or drugs in her system if he had felt that she did. Liverpool testifies that this is important, especially when they are dispensing narcotics, as they did in Lana’s case.
Dixon plays the tape that was made when Liverpool called the hospital requesting permission to dispense the morphine, and the nurse on the other end of the call specifically asks Liverpool if the patient has drugs or alcohol in her system and Liverpool relays that the patient has denied alcohol use. Liverpool also states in the call that he does not believe alcohol played a role in her fall, as he and his partner both slipped on the same rug and he calls it “dangerous”. The nurse then gives permission to push up to 10 mgs of morphine.
Dixon then asks the witness if the defense had contacted him approximately 6 weeks ago, and exactly how that meeting came about, and Liverpool tells the strange story of Tawni Tyndall coming to the Firehouse looking for him. She had Lana’s 902M form, and asked him some questions about the meaning of some of the terms on the form, and Liverpool asked her of the patient was suing the homeowner where she fell and Tawni said Yes, yes she is.” and Tawni said that she was a civil attorney involved in the matter. Liverpool then asked if there wasn’t some kind of statute of limitations involved, and Tyndall laughed it off. Tyndall then asked if the patient had been intoxicated at the time, and Liverpool, still with no specific recollection of the call said that if he didn’t mark the box off, he would assume that she was not, and that looking at the reports, since he pushed the morphine it was unlikely she was.
Dixon asks the witness for a description of Tyndall, and Liverpool describes her as a 45 year old female with long blonde hair and bright red lipstick. Dixon shows him Tyndall’s DMV photo and Liverpool identifies her as the woman who held herself out to be the civil attorney.
Dixon asks if she ever subsequently identified herself as a defense investigator and Liverpool says no.
On cross the defense stresses the fact that Liverpool has no clear recollection of the incident, that he doesn’t even remember Stark, his partner from that call, and that the only source of the information that Lana was not drinking was his subjective interpretation of her actions and behavior, and Lana’s own denials. The defense gets the witness to admit that just because the box wasn’t checked, that doesn’t mean that she really wasn’t actually intoxicated, just that he didn’t think she was, and that they do not routinely administer field sobriety tests.
Rosen also gets the witness to concede that there were two paramedics there that both had opinions, and that his partner believed Lana was intoxicated, and that there could be times when the two paramedics didn’t agree, but that due to their professionalism, it was unlikely that they would sit there and bicker over something when the patient had to be their focus and top priority, and on this particular call it was Stark who administered the IV drip and that he would have had more interaction with Lana than Liverpool had.
Liverpool then offers that if his partner thought that the patient was intoxicated, hey, he heard the transmission Liverpool made, and it would have been incumbent on Stark, if he felt that something was in error in the transmission, to interject and bring his observations to Liverpool’s attention.
The final prosecution witness of the day is Nick Terzian, who is a SAG franchise Talent agent and was Lana’s agent for over 11 years as of the time of her death.
He describes Lana as a “money maker”, which to him meant that she was extremely marketable, and credited that to her looks, her personality, her professionalism in never missing an audition, and her talent and ability to
always impress production crews, casting directors and people in the industry with her chameleon like ability to bring everything she had to a role and always “dress the part” when auditioning.
Terzian says that Lana was “bigger than life” and had the ability to fill a room when she entered. He said that she always made an impact, and never wanted for roles and parts. He says he resents that she is being called a “B movie actress”, because he did not see her that way. She was no different than the other 90% of the actors in Hollywood who were not “A listers” and making millions of dollars per role, but that she was “making a living” and working steadily in the time that he represented her. She was modeling, doing print ads, commercials, and movie roles and that she was a viable and employable talent.
On this positive note, court ends for the day. Hopefully Michael Bay will be on the stand tomorrow. I can’t wait to see if he manages to identify himself on the stand as “Michael Bay – director of Transformers, now in a theater near you.” Maybe he’ll give the jurors tickets.