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The Phil Spector Trial: We Watch Court TV So You Don’t Have To (08/09)

WHAT HAPPENED YESTERDAY? After a day off so the jury could get medical check-ups, the defense introduced a (final?) surprise forensic expert. Neuropathologist Jan Leetsma took the stand to discuss the involuntary movements Lana Clarkson’s body might have made following the gunshot wound that severed her spine, ceased all motor skills and instantaneously killed her. The defense was trying to show that Phil Spector didn’t tamper with Clarkson’s body following her death. In gruesome testimony, we learned that the majority of Clarkson’s blood leaked out onto the right side of her body, even though police found her head tilted toward the left. In a moment out of A Tale of Two Cities, Leetsma cited French Revolution-era guillotining to detail the zombie-esque movements a dead body can involuntarily perform post-death.

IS THIS GOOD OR BAD FOR SPECTOR? Neither. While the testimony about dead bodies moving was morbidly riveting, the overriding evidence (a wet, bloody diaper and blood spatter on Spector’s white suit jacket) still points to him repositioning Clarkson’s body as he attempted to clean the scene of the crime.

MEANWHILE, OUTSIDE OF COURT: Spector’s defense team reluctantly continues on without Linda Kenney-Baden. Kenney-Baden, who acts as a liaison between Spector and all the legal speak, continues to be missing from court because of illness. Between this and Bruce Cutler’s absence due to filming a TV show, Spector’s squad is operating extremely shorthanded.


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