The Darwin Exception

because it's not always survival of the fittest – sometimes the idiots get through

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CA vs. Spector – Moore Arguing & “Free OJ”

Posted by thedarwinexception on September 19, 2007

So OJ was arraigned this morning on his 10 felony and one gross misdemeanor charges – in front of Judge Joe Bonaventure Jr – his father was the judge in the Binion case. Joe Jr. is a massive guy with a long black ponytail and fu Manchu beard who looks like he’d be more a home in a wrestling ring than in a courtroom. I like him. He looks fair and friendly.

He asks for presentation of counsel, and Yale Galanter gets up and introduces himself and Grassso, indicating that they are the ONLY two counsel of record, perhaps a little dig to the fact that on Greta Van Susteren last night she interviewed someone who said that they were OJ’s counsel, and who elaborated at length with Greta about the facts of the case, the evidence and what OJ supposedly told him. Which immediately made me doubt his veracity, and why Greta continued to give him airtime and credence was beyond me.

But Galanter make sit crystal clear that the parties in court today with OJ are the only counsel OJ has in this matter.

The judge then announces to OJ what the charges are that OJ is facing and asks if he understands them.

1 count conspiracy to commit a crime

1 count conspiracy to commit kidnapping

1 count conspiracy to commit robbery

1 count burglary while in the possession of a deadly weapon

2 counts first degree kidnapping with use of a deadly weapon

2 counts robbery with use of a deadly weapon

2 counts assault with a deadly weapon

1 count coercion with use of a deadly weapon

OJ says he understands the charges against him, which is amazing, since I’m not even quite sure how the state arrived at some of these charges, since they seem to overreach and overlap each other, based on what facts we know.

The judge then addresses the issue of bail, and the prosecutor gets up to announce that the state and the defense have reached a stipulation in this case. Simpson will be granted bail in the amount of $125, 000, and will be required to relinquish his passport and agree to a no contact order between himself, the victims, the witnesses and any others involved in this case. He will be allowed to travel within the US as might be necessary.

The judge seems a little reluctant to grant bail based on the kidnapping with a deadly weapon charge, which he says is a no bail hold, but I don’t think that’s right, I think any charge besides capital murder is eligible for bail, but the judge says that he will honor and recognize the stipulation between the parties, and he grants the bail.

They then hold the matter over to the third week of October, at which time there will be a status hearing.

OJ was quite stone faced throughout the hearing, only really reacting when the judge read the kidnapping charge, maybe he knew that this charge carries a life sentence. And I wonder if OJ knows that one of the victims, Bruce Fromong, is in the hospital after suffering a massive heart attack, and that he’s listed in critical condition,. And I really wonder if this guy dying would add a murder charge to the long list of charges already leveled against OJ.

Yale Galanter then gave a press conference, in which he said all the things you would expect “OJ won’t be giving interviews”, “The bail was reasonable – he’s not a flight risk – where could he go?”, “I am OJ’s lawyer, despite the yahoo’s you see on TV claiming to be OJ’s attorney, you all know I am his attorney, how the media can give these people credence is beyond me.”

Back in LA in the Spector case, the attorneys are arguing for or against the inclusion of lesser included charges of manslaughter 7 days after the jury has been deliberating and after they have reached an impasse.

The judge, who is the one who brought this whole thing up yesterday, is now backing off the Lee case and tells the attorneys that he is not as sure as he once was that this case applies here. He also says that he has re-read special instruction 3 and is now quite convinced that it is a misstatement of the law, although it may be a correct statement of the prosecution’s theory. He wants to get into that today, as well. The third thing he wants to decide is the Moore law, and whether or not that should be read to the jury, and what modifications, if any, each side would want.

Dixon then gets up and asks what the jury is doing at this point, because if it is decided that Lee does apply and manslaughter should be included as a lesser charge, and the jury in the meantime, comes back with a verdict, well, what then?

The judge says that the jury is not deliberating at this point, that they are awaiting further instruction from the court.

Brunon gets up to argue against the inclusion of the manslaughter instructions to the judge. He bases his argument on the brief written by Riordan, which basically argues three points of law, one, that the defense was not given notice that these charges would be included or that this theory would be argued to the jury. Brunon says that the defense would have certainly done things differently if they had known that this would be a lesser, included charge.

Number two – the case at hand does not support the charge of involuntary manslaughter, and does not have the same elements of the crime as Lee had, therefore Lee does not apply. The Lee case outlined that there were two available theories of the case, that the defendant was incompetent due to gross intoxication, and that he was brandishing the weapon which was gross negligence. Neither of those situations apply here. Spector was not grossly intoxicated, and there’s no evidence to suggest he was brandishing the weapon. Brunon points out to the judge that the judge himself, during the course of jury instructions, had said that he had thought of including lesser charges and had rejected that idea because he did not feel the facts in the case supported it. Brunon says that the court was right then, and that the judge should not second guess at this point.

Brunon then points out number three on their list – that there is clear case law from the Supreme Court which would attach reversible error were the judge to reopen the closing arguments after deliberations have started because this would be undue coercion of the jury – in essence, telling them “OK, you can’t find him guilty on the original charges, how about these?”

Alan Jackson argues for the state for the inclusion of the lesser included charges. He points out to the judge that it is impossible for Mr. Brunon to say that there was no evidence that Spector was brandishing a weapon that evening. Jackson says that the mere fact of taking the weapon out of the drawer meets the definition of brandishing, and they do have circumstantial evidence of brandishing the weapon through the 1101B witnesses – that’s what they were there to prove, Spector’s motive, which has been defined again and again by the court as the emotional state Spector gets in in certain situations and how he reacts to them, and the 1101B witnesses prove that his normal course of action is to brandish a weapon. Just because the state argued the higher charges, that doesn’t mean the lower ones are not included – it just means that the lower charges are subsumed by the higher. Jackson says that this is the argument that the dissenting judge on the Lee case made in her opinion, that a reasonable jury would have to believe that the conduct went there – and beyond. Which is the same theory the state was operating under in this case – they always believed Spector brandished the gun, but they also always believed that the conduct went beyond that. Jackson says it’s the states position that you can’t assault someone with a gun without brandishing that gun.

Which leads into the first of the Defense’s points -t hat they weren’t given proper notice that this was the state’s theory – this has always been the state’s position, nothing has changed, and even if arguments were to be re-opened, Jackson says he wouldn’t change his argument or his theory one bit – he still would argue the same thing – it’s the act of pulling out the gun that is the brandishing – and the State believes he did that and more.

Jackson says he also doesn’t believe that the charges can’t be added without it being reversible error – he says that the State can amend or withdraw or add charges any time up until the jury comes back with a verdict. Jackson says the only difference between the two charges is the single element of conscious disregard for human life. That this doesn’t change the facts of the case or the way either side would present the evidence.

The Judge then asks Jackson, “well, if the facts are so clear and the evidence is there, why didn’t you ask for Involuntary Manslaughter to be a lesser included from the beginning?”

Jackson responds that this was purely a tactical decision on the part of the state, and that without the benefit of knowing the case law set forth in Lee, the state didn’t feel that they had to include the lesser charges, now, after reading Lee, they feel that they do. Jackson points out, though, that the defense didn’t ask for the lesser included charges for their own tactical reasons, but they were asked and they knew that these charges were there, and Riordan even asked the court to include them himself after the animation was played in the rebuttal argument of the state. So it is disingenuous for them to now argue that they weren’t “warned” of these charges, when they themselves were asking for them earlier.

The judge says that his concern is that if there is a verdict and the court does not instruct on the lesser included charges, that this might be error. And the defense concedes that they are not asking for the charges, that they don’t think the facts support it, and that they don’t agree with it, therefore it cannot be an issue for appeal on their part.

Jackson then says no, that if the charge is sua sponte, then even over everyone’s objections that it would still be reversible error, and the two cases that the defense cited, Stouter and Jennings, are not applicable as to giving new charges after deliberations begin, because that case dealt with changing the charges at the jury’s request after a dialogue ensued between the judge and jury. There has been no dialogue here, and the judge is not instructing on lessers because the jury has requested difference charges.

Brunon responds to Jackson’s arguments by saying that it’s all very well and good that prosecution wouldn’t have changed anything in their case if the lessers had been included from the beginning, but Jackson can’t say that the defense wouldn’t have changed things. And Brunon also points out that the prosecution cannot rely on the 1101B witnesses testimony as circumstantial evidence of brandishing, that this would imply he was using them as pattern witnesses, which he is not allowed to do. And that there’s no evidence of gross intoxication, so Lee doesn’t apply.

Roger Rosen then stands to tell the court that the state clearly wants this charge to be given to the jury so that the jury can reach a compromise verdict, and that’s not fair for the defendant and improper.

Brunon then points out to the court that they had not found a single case wherein the judge instructed the jury on new charges AFTER the jury had begun deliberations and AFTER they had reached an impasse.

The judge then rules on the issue, saying that he realizes that he is the one that came forth with the Lee case, but that he is just not convinced it applies here. The judge says that in light of the cases of Stouter and Jennings, that although everyone would like this case to be resolved,  that after the jury has arrived at an impasse, to give them a new offense to consider is, in essence, saying to them “If you can’t find him guilty on the other charges, try these”. It’s not the charge the judge is concerned about, or the words, it’s the timing. The judge feels that to give the jury the new charge would be indicating to them that he wanted them to come to a verdict, and that it would be coercive.

The judge also says that he is not concerned that not giving the new charges is reversible error, since it is invited error, by the defenses’ objection and refusal to the charges.

The judge then moves on to special instruction number 3, the instruction one of the jurors expressed confusion over yesterday when the judge polled the jury for their thoughts.

Special instruction 3 reads as follows:

“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 judge says that this is not a correct statement of the law, even though it may be a correct statement of the people’s theory. The judge says that there are other ways you can get to Second Degree Murder besides the ones outlined in the instruction. He says that they need to decide if this instruction should be modified or withdrawn completely.

Riordan, via speakerphone, for the defense says that the defense continues to believe that this instruction was completely appropriate. The Supreme Court has ruled that the defendant is entitled to a pinpoint instruction that outlines reasonable doubt as it relates to the prosecution’s theory, and this has been the prosecution’s theory from the grand jury proceedings all the way up to the animations in their rebuttal statement in this trial – that Spector’s hand was on the gun and that he put the gun in Clarkson’s mouth and he pulled the trigger. Therefore the defense believes that he special instruction is permissible and accurate. After a strong deadlock has been declared, the judge cannot amend the instructions – the judge can’t say to the jury that although some of you have relied on this instruction, I am now telling you that I disapprove of the position you are taking and therefore you should retreat from it.

The Judge tells Riordan that there is certainly case law that would support a judge withdrawing an instruction that a jury is confused by if that instruction incorrectly states the law, as he believes this instruction does.

Brunon then offers that the record should be clear that one juror made an ambiguous comment about the special instruction -that  none of the others said they needed elaboration, and that although the court has said that it may be too narrow under the law – when you tailor an instruction to the facts of the case, as you would do in any Sears instruction, well, of course it is going to be narrow, and that with the evidence presented in this case, there’s no other way to get to Second Degree murder than what the state has argued. What other theory is consistent with w\hat they presented and argued and still rises to the level of murder in the second degree?

Jackson then tells the court that they objected to this instruction from the beginning, in all it’s many forms that were presented by Riordan. Jackson says that the state’s theory s just that – a theory, and this doesn’t mean that any or all of the jurors must adopt that theory to find the defendant guilty – this instruction pigeonholes the prosecution into one way the crime could have happened and that’s it – and it makes the state prove it beyond a reasonable doubt – which is not proper.

The judge says that he needs to know from the jurors exactly what their problem is with this instruction, so they bring the jurors back in to ask them.

Juror number 10, the foreman, tells the judge that “taking that instruction by itself is where some of the jurors have had a problem, standing on that alone rather than the total picture”.

The judge asks if any other jurors agree with this, and jurors number 11, 8 and 5 agree with the foreman.

Juror number 2 offers that some of the jurors have questions about whether every element of that instruction must be proved beyond a reasonable doubt.

Juror number 6 says that part of their challenge has been determining the weight of the elements, of the totality of the elements and how to weigh each element, if one is more important than the other.

The foreman seems to agree with this assessment, and tries to clarify the issue, saying that as a jury, the agreement on the totality of the facts and what is drawn from the totality – well, different jurors give different weights to certain facts.

Juror number 12 asks about a different issue, wanting to know if it would be possible to actually see the items of clothing – not to handle them, but just to see them, that the pictures aren’t really as helpful as the actual articles would be.

Juror number 9 brings up the same issue he had spoken of yesterday – the difference between “reasonable doubt” and “just doubt” – he says that it’s pretty clear to some of the jurors, and not to others – he said that they need clarification of this issue, and that the judge re-reading the instruction to them might help.

The foreman again interjects and says that it’s the reasonableness that needs clarification – and he wants to know if it is appropriate for one juror to feel something is reasonable and one juror to think it’s not. Is that one juror unreasonable?

Juror number 11 gets back to to special instruction 3 and wants to know if they should base their decision on the wording of that instruction, or if they need to take the instructions as a whole.

The judge thanks them all for their thoughts and sends them out.

The judge tells the attorney’s that he is going to re-read the reasonable doubt instruction to the jurors as they requested, and that he is probably going to give the Moore instruction. Jackson then gives the judge the state’s proposed Moore instruction.

The standard Moore instruction is this:

It has been my experience on more than one occasion that a jury which initially reported that it was unable to reach a verdict was ultimately able to arrive at a verdict. To assist you in your further deliberations, I’m going to further instruct you as follows: Your goal as jurors should be to reach a fair and impartial verdict, if you are able to do so based solely on the evidence presented and without regard for the consequences of your verdict regardless of how long it takes to do so.

“It is your duty as jurors to carefully consider, weigh and evaluate all of the evidence presented at the trial, to discuss your views regarding the evidence, and to listen and consider the views of your fellow jurors. In the course of your further deliberations, you should not hesitate to re-examine your own views or to request your fellow jurors to re-examine theirs.

“You should not hesitate to change a view you once held if you are convinced it is wrong or to suggest other jurors change their views if you are convinced they are wrong. “Fair and effective jury deliberations require a frank and forthright exchange of views. As I previously instructed you, each of you must decide the case for yourself, and you should do so only after a full and complete consideration of all of the evidence with your fellow jurors. It is your duty as jurors to deliberate with the goal of arriving at a verdict, if you can do so without violence to your individual judgment.

“Both the People and the defense are entitled to the individual judgment of each juror. As I previously instructed you, you have the absolute discretion to conduct your deliberations in any way you deem appropriate. May I suggest that since you’ve been unable to arrive at a verdict using the methods that you have chosen, that you consider to change the methods you have been following, at least temporarily and try new methods.

“For example? You may wish to consider having different jurors lead the discussions for a period of time. You may wish to experiment with reverse role-playing by having those on one side of the issue present and argue the other side’s positions and vice versa. This might enable you to better understand the other’s positions.

“By suggesting you should consider changes in your methods of deliberations, I want to stress that I am not dictating or instructing you as to how to conduct your deliberations. I merely find that you may find it productive to make sure each juror has a full and fair opportunity to express his or her views and consider and understand the views of the other jurors.

You’re ordered to continue your deliberations at this time. If you have other questions, concerns, requests or any communications you desire to report to me, please put those in writing on the form my bailiff will provide you. Have them signed and dated by your foreperson or one or more of the other jurors, and then notify the deputy.”

Riordan, through the speakerphone, reminds the court that the facts in Moore were that the jury had only been deliberating one day and a division had not been revealed to the court. The court could have a coercive effect here, that the Moore instruction has never been given after 5 and 1/2 days of deliberations.

Riordan then asks the judge if the question is still to be decided about special instruction 3 and whether the court will withdraw that instruction, and the judge says yes, this is still an open issue.

Riordan says to the court that  the jury has deliberated for a week now with the instruction. He offers that there is case law that says instructions are to be set before deliberations, and even more troubling is that the defense relied on special instruction three in the arguments. Riordan says that if the judge withdraws now, then 1.) the judge is sending a message to the members of the jury that have relied on this instruction that they are wrong, and 2.) the point of withdrawing it is to say to the jury that although the prosecution relied on this theory of the case, I’m now telling you that there are other scenarios that might support a murder conviction.

Alan Jackson stands and tells the court that Riordan has said it exactly – that this instruction pigeonholes the prosecution into one theory and requires the jury to find something that they are not legally required to find – and that the state has drafted a modification.

The judge says he won’t need the modification, that he has re-read this instruction and that it is clear to him why the defense wanted this instruction so badly, and why they fought so hard toy get it in. It is not the law. The last sentence especially, that is absolutely in error, and the judge says he can understand why the jury is confused. The instruction is withdrawn and when he tells the jurors this, he will only say to them that this point of the law is covered better in other instructions, and if necessary, both sides will have the opportunity to reargue in front of the jury based on this instruction or the lack of it.

The judge then asks the defense if they wish to re-argue in light of Special instruction 3 being withdrawn. The defense offers that they would first like to know how the judge is going to rule on their motion of reading the unanimity instruction to the jury.

The judge realizes that there is going to be more argument, and brings in the jurors and sends them home.

And the unanimity instruction that the defense wants the judge to read to the jury states as follows:

The defendant is charged with Second Degree Murder in Count 1. The People have presented evidence of more than one act to prove that the defendant committed this offense. You must not find the defendant guilty unless you all agree that the People have proved that the defendant committed at least one of these acts and you all agree on which act he committed.

The judge cites case law to the court including People vs Rousseau. The judge says that the key to deciding whether or not to give the unanimity instruction to the jury is whether or not there must be unanimity in how the crime was committed. The judge does not feel that this is required in this case. not all of the jurors have to agree on how it happened. So he denies the motion.

The court then goes down through the list of the 8 comments and questions the jury had. They decide that several of them will be covered by the Moore instruction, and that others are no longer applicable based ont eh withdrawal of Special Instruction number 3.

The judge says that he will instruct the jury that all the instructions are to be given equal weight, that the clothing items were not presented as evidence and therefore are not available to them, and that he will re-read the reasonable doubt instruction.

They then take a break so that the defense can strategize about the re-opening of closing arguments.

When they come back Riordan makes a long impassioned speech about the defense’s adamant opposition tot he reopening of arguments. Mostly based on the fact that although the judge does not want to bring special attention to the fact that he is withdrawing special instruction 3, that if he re-opens arguments and allows both sides to argue again, that it will be bringing special attention to it, and besides, then the state can point out this withdrawal in their argument and tell the jury that they can no longer rely on it. Riordan says that the state just wants the chance to reargue with all the new information they have gleaned from the jury in the last couple of days, and the defense objects.

The judge then asks if they are sure, and if they are waiving their rights on this issue, and Riordan says yes, that they have made their mistrial motions on the fact of special instruction 3 being withdrawn, and that they think that reopening arguments would just compound this error.

Jackson says that the state is fine with just the withdrawal of special instruction 3 – they don’t oppose not opening arguments.

The judge then asks for arguments on the Moore instruction, and Brunon says that the defense doesn’t like the part that says “In my experience, on more than one occasion, that juror have been unable to come to a verdict…” Brunon says that implies familiarity on the part of the judge.

Brunon also objects to the “touchy feely” role playing that is suggested in the second to last paragraph, and the judge says “Well, Mr. Brunon, this *is* California”.

And, of course, who could forget that, really, when we have another celebrity sitting at a defense table, thisclose to getting away with murder.

The jury will be back tomorrow for the new instructions. And hopefully some fresh deliberations.


25 Responses to “CA vs. Spector – Moore Arguing & “Free OJ””

  1. Holy Toledo said

    Kimmer gets another A+.

    This is getting too damned complicated for me. I only have a master’s degree.

  2. Janice said

    Kim….. How can I say THANK YOU !!! I missed this today and now I feel like I’m back up to speed…. I’m truly grateful.

    “The jury will be back tomorrow for the new instructions. And hopefully some fresh deliberations.” …… From your lips to God’s ears….

    Again – thank you for sharing your gift of observation and writing with us all…


  3. Sue said

    Beyond A Reasonable Doubt , yours is the BEST summation existing of what went on in court today!
    Thanks Ever So!
    Sue Not Susan

  4. luvgabe said

    Kim, once again, you are nothing less than MASTERFUL in reporting and articulating the legal intricacies of what transpired in court today. Simply THE best. Bravo!

  5. Marie said

    Are you feeling the love today? Great reporting. I missed it again because of work. I agree with all the above posters. (Really, I’d be so lost without your blog explaining things!)

  6. Erin said

    Great report, as always. However, I miss your salty language and sarcastic wit.

    The jury foreman seems to have been put in his place. Clearly many jurors needed some clarification, and when speaking for them he said there was nothing more that could be done. I hope they have renewed energy and find their common sense by tomorrow morning.

  7. Cathy said

    I missed everything today but you did a great job getting me up to speed. I find it interesting that yesterday the jury foreman said something like “based on the evidence presented in the case we are unable to agree on a verdict” with a strong and sure tone. After reading what some members of the jury expressed and questioned today I just think WOW what a difference a day makes! Looks like we have a dog back in this hunt! Thanks again for your reporting.


  8. noor b said

    The judge said: “I misstated the law”.

    Bullshit that’s what I say.

    He wants to bully the jury to get a verdict.
    A guilty verdict, that is.

    Shit, this is just not right.

  9. Hank said

    The Judge tells Riordan that there is certainly case law that would support a judge withdrawing an instruction that a jury is confused by if that instruction incorrectly states the law, as he believes this instruction does.

    Even if it is true that the instruction incorrectly states the law, shouldn’t the judge have caught that before? I thought that’s what all the discussions about jury instructions were about: the make sure that the instructions were fair and correct.

    While based on my limited knowledge I would vote to convict, it’s unseemly to in effect say, “Well, you can’t convict on the previous instructions, how about these?” If that’s not grounds for reversal, it should be.

    It seems at this point the prosecution would be better off with a hung jury or mistrial, and next time get those statements Spector made in the record. After all he made statements that he was holding the gun when it went off before he claimed she shot herself, didn’t he? It seems that a clear statement by him that puts the gun in his hand would trump a later denial.

  10. RJ said

    thanks again, Kim.

    I missed video today, so this is a great update.

    I understood everything, because I have a Master’s Degree…….. in Science.

  11. Scottie Rich said

    Kim, thank you for your report. After I recovered from hearing that there was a hung jury, I wanted to scream that there wasn’t a lesser charge. I really felt that the jury just could not convict him of 2nd degree even though AJ did an absolutely stellar job of defining it. I now am so depressed about that piece of shit being free to contine to terrorize the anyone that disobeys him that I almost lost my appetite (but even this can’t kill it altogether, darn it).

    OK…message to Judge Feidler. Have you ever used “jury nullification”? Is this just a TV show bullshit storyline? If ever there was a need for a judge to look at the verdict and just throw it out because they did not understand “reasonable doubt” or some other instruction…this is it!!! Please, please if this is proper and is an option, someone tell him to do it!

    This trial has actually done something to me that I didn’t think could happen. I am distancing myself from any future trials. I cannot care so much again because it’s not about justice, it’s about money and who has it. I think the defense can buy anyone and not be held accountable for the lies it tells while the prosecution has a different, higher standard. How can anyone get too emotionally involved when logic is not allowed to be an influence? I am so sorry for Lana’s family. Scottie

  12. Sprocket said

    I have renewed hope on a just verdict: Spector convicted of Murder 2; hauled off in handcuffs and forced to live without his wigs.

  13. Cacafuego said

    I think by this point of the game, Fiedler’s attitude is very likely “Fuck whether it’s appeallable error or not. The asshole can appeal from jail, then get a new trial in a year and STILL be found guilty again. The State has only one bite at this apple. The twitchy little creep can file as many appeals as many as he wants.”

  14. loveyvondoodlesocks said

    Thank you Kim! I watched the hearings today, but it wasn’t until after reading your wonderful blog that I understood everything. Thanks for bringing clarity! You are truly a generous soul!! Thank you for taking the time to write this blog. You don’t know it, but you’ve taught me so much! I trully appreciate all you do! Thanks Kim! Hugs! Lisanne

  15. susanp said

    What a wonderful summation of the omplicated day. This Judge is so bright and witty. I’m surprised you did not mention his hot tub remark. We are leaving today to go to my son’s wedding in San Antonio-I tried to beg off because of this case but no dice!
    Susan not Sue

  16. Charlie Pearce said

    How do I claim my free orange juice?

  17. Frankie Bones said

    Thanks for the wonderful reporting, Kim. I was in buffer hell for the better part of the day and missed quite a bit.

    Frankie Bones
    (Another Sue)

  18. enlightenme said

    Thanks Kim for the summation of yesterday. I missed it all.

    I don’t know how the prosecution and the judge let that instruction in in the first place. The pros. never has to prove where, when, or how a murder was committed. They can present a THEORY but that’s all it is, a theory, since no one was there to witness most murders.

    Love your blog!

  19. brdsnbs said

    Hi Kim.

    I was out all day yesterday and only got a few ‘blips’ of what went on via our local news. I tried to catch up this morning watching Court TV but as usual, they were all over the place. Finally, I said ‘to hell with it, I’ll read Kim’s blog.’ Now I feel like I didn’t miss a thing. You’re so thorough. Thanks so much!


  20. A.D.A. said

    Arm’s Length, your awesome rant *plus* messages left on my phone last night from my grad-student nephew re: that tasering really did reduce me to tears.

    What’s to be done? Maybe sending $5 to Kim is lame. Money doesn’t solve things (and we don’t want Kim to terrifyingly trasmute into another Star Jones. Sorry, Kim – sure you WON’T.) It’s the “love of money” that corrupts, not money, and POWER that corrupts. What to do? What to do?

    The story that a woman in the crowd during the Constitutional Convention yelled to Ben Franklin “What kind of government did you give us?” and he replied “A republic, if you can keep it” comes to mind. Is it lost?

    How do the citizens overcome the corporate media? Thanks, Kim, for this forum. It’s sure a start! Thanks, thanks, thanks.
    P.S. Sometimes I think it’s appropriate to be truly upset.

  21. Glenda said

    Thanks Kim! I actually listened to most of the feed but had to stop and do *work* so couldn’t really get the finer points of what was happening. I did miss your usual commentary on this one–I guess just covering all the issues took all the time and energy you had to give.
    I did love the shots on the talking telephone as Riordan yelled his instructions and his objections. And the comment from the judge about hot tubs was just priceless!

    I am so glad that the judge withdrew his plan for lesser charges–that just screamed problems and a hey day in the appeals court. I’ve been so impressed with the judge in his handling of this case and am just really confused as to how he let the special instruction get by and didn’t notice that it was problematic. I’m glad he is willing to take care of it now but still think that Riordan is already sharpening his pencil to begin the appeal.

    I thought Jackson looked really tired–staying up too late to argue for something he really didn’t want to happen?

  22. A.D.A. said

    Arm’s Length – Here’s from the today: What’s real story here? Did they take 35 of the 40 LATimes reporters out to refute your powerful rant?

    Courtroom seats go begging

    This morning may be the biggest day of the 5-month Phil Spector murder trial, with Judge Larry Paul Fidler expected to withdraw one instruction and tell jurors to try harder to come the verdict which they have found elusive for the last two weeks.

    But you couldn’t tell it from the gallery.

    Long after the scheduled start of the court day at 9:30, there remained open seats in the three courtroom rows dedicated to the public.

  23. […] DarwinException account of yesterday’s proceedings was absolutely masterly and I wish it to be known that, […]

  24. Kat said

    Jackson says that the mere fact of taking the weapon out of the drawer meets the definition of brandishing, and they do have circumstantial evidence of brandishing the weapon through the 1101B witnesses – that’s what they were there to prove, Spector’s motive, which has been defined again and again by the court as the emotional state Spector gets in in certain situations and how he reacts to them, and the 1101B witnesses prove that his normal course of action is to brandish a weapon.


    This, to me, is the key to the whole case. I hope that with the removal of “Instruction #3” that the defense wrote, we will finally get a verdict.

    Thanks so much for giving us such a great summary every day that can be understood in layman’s terms! You are the best!!!

  25. LOL said





    And in the defense argument over jury instructions Phil Spector’s lawyer Bradley Brunon informed Judge Larry Fidler of “Jury Rigging as A Solution”

    In addition Judge Larry Fidler is refusing to add the defense scenarios to the jury instructions – such as that Lana may have been playing with the gun (being gun savvy) and it went off etc.

    Or that Adriano De Sousa was protecting himself and distancing himself from the murder scene with a good story and did not hear anything and later became the State’s Puppet to gain his US working papers.

    Only the Prosection’s side of events are going into the jury instructions after a hung jury 7/5. And now that as well as new jury instructions – Aren’t these proceedings a wee bit biased?

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