Criminal Justice

Spector Lawyer to Jury: Case Not Proven

Final arguments are almost over in the murder trial of music producer Phil Spector, and the case is expected to go to the jury today or Monday.

Even before the verdict, one question has already been answered, however: Linda Kenney-Baden was the defense lawyer tapped to give the closing argument, after Spector made an unusual 11th-hour decision to change counsel and said he would decide later about who would take the leading role at the trial’s conclusion. (For details, see this earlier post.)

“Spector remained intent on having Kenney-Baden deliver the closing summation despite warnings by the judge, who said Spector was taking a risk by having her deliver the argument because she was absent for a large part of the defense case while ill,” notes the Associated Press.

Spector’s now-former lead counsel, Bruce Cutler, also was absent during much of the trial in order to film a television program, as discussed in another post.

During her two-day closing, Kenney-Baden argued that scientific evidence doesn’t prove Spector’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, and criticized the prosecution for portraying Spector as a bad man with a history of threatening women with guns, according to the Los Angeles Times. “And wouldn’t it be so easy to convict him on that basis, so easy because you hate him from what you’ve heard?” Kenney-Baden asked the jury yesterday. “Wouldn’t it be so easy? But it would be so wrong.”

Spector, 67, is charged with second-degree murder in the shooting death of Lana Clarkson, 40, at his Los Angeles home on Feb. 3, 2003. The defense contends she shot herself accidentally.

Also see:

Reuters (Spector attorney asks jury to seek “truth”).

Telegraph (Phil Spector murder verdict expected soon).

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