Phil Spector found guilty
- Bang Showbiz
- 14 April 2009
Phil Spector faces life in prison after being convicted of the second degree murder of actress Lana Clarkson, who he shot in the mouth at his Los Angeles home six years ago
Phil Spector has been convicted of murder.
The music producer faces life in prison after a jury found him guilty of killing actress Lana Clarkson at his Los Angeles home six years ago.
The 68-year-old pop legend - whose wife Rachelle Short sobbed as the verdict was read out at the Los Angeles Superior Court yesterday (13.04.09) - intends to appeal the decision following accusations of legal errors.
His lawyer Doron Weinberg said: "I don't think justice was done today. Not only because I don't believe Phillip Spector murdered Lana Clarkson but also because I am very, very certain that under the proper legal standard his guilt was not proven, not nearly proven beyond a reasonable doubt."
The attorney said he believed the case was swayed by the judge's erroneous rulings, particularly one that allowed five women from Spector's past to testify they had previously been threatened with guns by the producer. He said it would be the basis for appeal and a request for a new trial
However, one of the female jurors revealed afterwards they had been given a "complete picture" and had "gone through all the information and that's what the conclusion was".
During the case - in which Spector didn't give evidence - the defence alleged the 40-year-old actress' death was a suicide.
Despite denying he murdered the victim by shooting her in the mouth, Spector's former chauffer Adriano de Souza testified he saw Spector clutching a pistol shortly after Miss Clarkson was shot, saying: "I think I just killed somebody."
A statement released by the victim's family after the verdict was announced read: "We are pleased the jury has rejected the distortion and trashing of Lana Clarkson's life by the defence in this trial, the last trial and the past six plus years. There is no joy today. This is tragic, but actions have consequences."
Edward Lozzi, a former publicist and long-time friend of Lana, added: "I am elated. The verdict was not shocking because the evidence against him was so overwhelming but I am very glad because nobody knew for sure what would happen.
"A crazy psychopath is off the streets. He thought he was too powerful to get caught, but justice has finally been done."
The five-month trial was the second time Spector had been tried for the crime. The first trial in 2007 collapsed after jurors failed to reach a unanimous verdict.
In this trial the 12-strong jury was given the option of returning a verdict of involuntary manslaughter but opted for second degree murder after 30 hours of deliberations.
Spector has been remanded in custody until sentencing on 29 May and will be jailed for between 15 years to life in prison.
Spector is famous for developing the 'Wall of Sound' production technique in the 60s and masterminded hits for numerous artists including The Beatles, the Rolling Stones and Ike and Tina Turner.