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Closing arguments underway in the Phil Spector murder retrial

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After nearly five months of testimony, the murder retrial of rock legend Phil Spector is about to wrap up. Yesterday, the prosecution presented its closing arguments in an attempt to convince the jury to convict Spector of murdering 40-year-old actress Lana Clarkson.

The actress was found shot to death in Spector’s Alhambra mansion back in 2003. Clarkson starred in “Barbarian Queen” (1985) and the movie spoof “Amazon Women on the Moon” (1987).

Los Angeles Deputy District Attorney Truc Do called Spector a “demonic maniac” who was known to use a gun to play Russian Roulette with the lives of women he wanted to control. According to the Los Angeles Times website, The Deputy D.A. reminded jurors that several women had described Spector’s reckless and threatening behavior, a chauffeur testified Spector confessed to him, expert witnesses had noted blood was found on Spector’s jacket and that there were bruises on Clarkson’s wrist — evidence of a struggle.

The famous rock music producer is on trial for second degree murder; if convicted he faces at least 15 years in prison. Last Friday, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Larry Paul Fidler agreed to allow the jury to consider a lesser charge of involuntary manslaughter, which carries a penalty of two-to-four years behind bars.  

 In 2007, a mistrial was declared in Spector’s first trial after the jury deadlocked 10-to-2 in favor of conviction. In recent years, the 69-year-old Spector has been a recluse. He is famous for creating the recording technique dubbed the “Wall of Sound,” back in the 1960s.

The defense team will get its chance to go before the jury with closing arguments today. Spector’s attorneys claim Clarkson’s death was a suicide. The jury is expected to begin deliberations by the end of the week.

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