Even though I left the house late at 7:25 am, I made it into downtown LA a few minutes after 8:00 am. Traffic wasn't too bad, even with the intense fog. I stopped into the cafeteria just to see if there might be anything that appealed to me, but I decided to pass. I spot John Taylor and ask him if I can join him. He replied, "Sure." I ask him if he's heard anything through that grapevine that I assume all attorneys are connected into, but he just shakes his head. He asks me what happened over on the CTV forums, and I give him my impressions as to what I think happened, since I still don't understand the explanation that was given to me.
We talk a bit about civil cases in general, and punitive damages. I'm no lawyer, and I'm not really following all that Mr. Taylor is saying, but what I think I understand is, even if in round two, Spector is convicted, the plaintiff still has to put on a case. We speculate on whether or not Spector will even show up, because he did claim the waiver on October 22nd. The Clarkson's are not coming for this hearing today, nor is Rod Lindblum who has a hearing in another case.
I had taken a look see earlier upstairs, and the hallway was full of potential jurors. But inside 106 it was empty so I went back downstairs to wait for 10:00 am to come around with Mr. Taylor. After I rounded the 9th floor security, Ciaran is on a bench and says hello. Although his beat is now Federal Court, he showed up to report on this hearing. I mention to him that Taylor thinks he might not even show, and Ciaran replies, "Oh he's here." And as I turn, I see Rachelle and Spector down at the end of the hall, waiting to enter Fidler's courtroom. Spector sees me and stares. I see Linda Deutsch is in the hallway, and she comes over to say hello to Ciaran McEvoy from City News.
There is a somewhat tall man (everyone would tower over Spector) semi-bald with stark white hair still left on the sides. It's a good assumption this is Spector's new attorney. Rachelle is wearing a skin tight chocolate brown pantsuit with matching jacket top. Virtually all of the matching jacket and pants outfits that she has worn to court have been overly form fitting, and the jackets, all short, usually ending at her waist. I didn't notice if she had on a pair of Christian Laboutin shoes. What was new, were the bodyguards surrounding Spector. Gone are the massive refrigerator sized guys. These two new bodyguards are tall and slim, wearing very nice suits. The only thing that makes me thing they might not be members of the Nation of Islam, is that one of them has their long hair done in corn rows. I don't know if the Nation of Islam would let their members wear their hair in such a fashion. Spector is wearing his standard Edwardian style suit with an ice blue tie. The head gear is the same one we last saw; it hasn't changed.
At first, one of the gentlemen I saw down at that end of the hall, I thought was Chris Plourd, but I was mistaken. I leave Ciaran and walk down towards the courtroom, passing Spectors group and enter 106. The place is virtually empty, but there is a case in progress with 16 jurors in the jury box and the defense attorney is cross examining a witness. Steven Mikulan from the LA Weekly is there, and I very quietly slip into the second row beside him. A see a lone tiny woman sitting at the defense table. It isn't until much later that it dawns on me that this must be the defendant. Steve and I exchange silent hellos, and I mouth that Ciaran is out in the hallway. Taylor is already in the courtroom, sitting in the back row on one of the plastic chairs. AT 9:55 am, Spector enters the courtroom with his entourage, and they sit in the back row on the plastic chairs, surrounding John Taylor. 9:58 am, Pat Dixon enters.
At precisely 10:00 am, Judge Fidler calls a recess in the current case. After the jurors file into the jury room, Taylor gets up and he and Dixon exchange hellos. Alan Parachini, the head of the public relations office is already in the courtroom. Linda Deutsch Ciaran and several other reporters show up that I don't recognize. Sandi Gibbons arrives, and I think Steven says something like, "We're all here," or, "It's just like last week," as she sits down. Whenever Sandi sees me, she always smiles and says, "Hello Sprocket!"
Spector's defense attorney and Pat Dixon are greeting each other in the well, and exchanging business cards. There are more reporters in row two, and some spectators in the back row. But for the most part, the courtroom is pretty vacant. There is a pool photographer and a video cameraman set up. Rick Ocampo is here, and I'm wondering if he will be sitting second chair or not. Then I see AJ. He's clean shaven, and someone comments on it, and either he makes a joke about it or someone else does. Jackson greets Ciaran and Steven and then he addresses me directly. He says hello and gives me a little wave of his hand. AJ says, "It's good to see you," and asks how I was doing with my time off. At first I'm tongue tied and about to blush, because, he is SO handsome lol, and I'm quite startled that he even addressed me directly. I think I reply I'm fine, and then I say to him, "I heard you've been traveling." AJ replies, "Yes! I've been down to Austin and the up to New York.
As we wait for the hearing to begin, Ciaran and Steven discuss the NFL season. What they are talking about is Greek to me, although I try to listen in and follow it. The cameramen are getting their tripods ready. Finally the Judge calls court into session and Spector's attorney formally introduces himself for the record. It's Doron Weinberg. He informs Fidler that as far as we can tell, we are well on the way to resolving issues regarding an agreement in representation. So, although he and Spector are in daily negotiations, they have not inked the deal. Weinberg asks for a few more weeks to get these final differences resolved, and mentioning the upcoming holiday, asks for a date of Friday, December 7th as the next hearing to formalize his representation. There is no objection from the prosecution.
Fidler makes sure that Spector agrees that the count for a speedy trial ~the "zero-sixty" is reset to start from December 7th, and that's it. It's all over. Everyone slowly exits the courtroom, and Sandi Gibbons tells me the correct spelling of the new defense attorney's name. She believes he works in Riordan's firm in San Francisco, has tried several cases up there, and has some articles about him in the mainstream press.
And that's it. The case continues to move forward at a snails pace. I make my way back to the budget parking lot to head home and write my entry.
I almost forgot! As Linda Deutsch got in the elevator to go up to the press room on the 18th floor, I asked her if she was going to cover the OJ hearing on November 8th. She said, "Yes."