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California Briefing / LOS ANGELES

Jurors can hear of Spector threats

September 17, 2008|Jack Leonard

A Los Angeles judge overseeing the Phil Spector murder retrial ruled Monday that prosecutors could introduce evidence from five women who testified at the first trial that the legendary producer had threatened them with guns in the past.

In denying a defense motion to exclude the witnesses, Superior Court Judge Larry P. Fid- ler said he would allow the testimony because prosecutors could argue that it undercut the defense theory that actress Lana Clarkson shot herself in the legendary producer's Alhambra mansion.

One of the women, Dianne Ogden, died of an accidental overdose of prescription medication after the first trial, which ended in a hung jury. Fidler had previously indicated that he would allow prosecutors to show video footage of Ogden's trial testimony but said Friday that he also wanted to ensure that the footage did not include images of the defendant.

The judge has yet to rule on a request by prosecutors to introduce evidence in a sixth incident in which Spector is alleged to have used a gun to intimidate a woman.

Jury selection is scheduled to begin Oct. 14.

-- Jack Leonard

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