Phil Spector trial: Day 1

Prosecution accuse producer of 'history of violence'

Prosecutors on the opening day of Phil Spector’s trial (April 25) alleged that the producer had a well documented history of violence.

Spector is accused of murdering actress Lana Clarkson in 2003.

Deputy District Attorney Alan Jackson said Spector was someone: “Who, when he’s confronted with the right circumstances, when he’s confronted with the right situations, turns sinister and deadly.

“The evidence is going to paint a picture of a man, who on 3 February 2003, put a loaded pistol in Lana Clarkson’s mouth – inside her mouth – and shot her to death.”

Jackson described a pattern of behaviour in Spector, where he would get drunk, take a woman home and threaten her with a gun if she refused to stay.

He said that Clarkson was: “Simply the last in a long line of women who fell victim to Phillip Spector over the years.”

Spector pleaded not guilty. His defence lawyers say that Clarkson put a gun in her mouth and shot herself.

Both sides say forensic evidence and autopsy support their accounts.

Superior Court Judge Larry Fidler has allowed five women to testify about Spector brandishing guns around them between 1988 and 1995.

Spector’s lawyers said the judge’s decision was a “large hurdle” for his team to surmount, saying the evidence would be “very salacious and seductive” and would distract the jury”.

As previously reported jury selection was completed yesterday (April 25), with nine men, three women and six alternate jurors chosen.

The trial is expected to last up to three months. Among those reported to be preparing to act as character witnesses for Phil Spector is Yoko Ono, reports BBC News