Updated: Friday October 31st, 2008
Just got this report in from Sprocket at the courthouse!
Counsel was informed today that Alternate Juror #1 is unable to attend the trial today. The juror apparently fell going to his car last night and thinks he may have broken his foot. He feels he will be able to get his foot taken care of today.
Judge Fidler stated that "although I didn't speak to the juror directly, he didn't think it was anything too serious, he didn't ask to be excused." He also informed the jury that this appeared to be a one-day-off incident. He also indicated that these things happen throughout the trial and that the case can't go forward without the alternate juror.
The judge has ordered the jury to return Monday morning.
More from Sprocket when she returns from court!
Update: October 31st, 2008
I miss the 8:29 am train again. When I get on the 9th floor, the 106 jury is in front of me going through security. There is a bailiff in front of them and a bailiff behind them. When the last juror clears the walk through security scanner, the bailiff says to the two women in line in front of me. "Just wait a moment."
When I get inside the courtroom, it's like a ghost town compared to the day before. Only one accredited press reporter shows up today, Linda Deutsch from The Associated Press.
Spector's fan is there, and a few other people who came to watch testimony. One of them is Jon Scott, co-owner of All Memphis Music.com, who I met at the first trial. Mr. Scott points out to me that on opening statements day, one of the jurors, he believes it was #5, was wearing a black T-shirt that had the "Sun Records" logo on it. This is interesting. According to Wikipedia, Sun Records and Sun Studio occupied the same building in Memphis, TN and were started by Sam Phillips. Mr. Scott tells me Sun Records is still in business and that Ike Turner is from Memphis. Ike's first rock and roll song "Rocket 88" was produced at Sun Studio.
When I enter the courtroom, the prosecution team is sitting all together in the plastic chairs against the back wall by the door. Alan Jackson, Rick Ocampo, Truc Do and one of their clerks, are all together. One of the PIO staff is in the back row also. I get up from my seat in the second row and ask Mr. Jackson if he can tell me the witnesses he plans to call today. AJ says, "Well, we plan to start off with the 1101(b) witnesses. I don't know the exact order, it depends. If we get to witnesses today, it depends on what happens." I go back to my seat to wait.
While the prosecution is in the back row, I see Mr. Weinberg and Jennifer whisper at the podium. Right after 9:30 am, the Lana Clarkson's family enters and sits in the front row. Not long after, the prosecution team takes their seats in the well. Donna is not with them and I lean in to ask John Taylor if she is alright. He tells me that everything is fine.
Judge Fidler takes the bench and addresses the gallery. The issue is alternate #1 fell in the parking lot yesterday while going to his car and he thinks he broke his foot. He just needs to see his doctor and get his foot taken care of today. He's obviously not here today. Fidler states that he doesn't see it as an issue to excuse him this early in the trial. AJ says, "Thank you very much for letting us know so early."
The accredited press reports the following differently, but I have this in my notes as a quote from Judge Fidler, "Although I didn't speak to the juror directly, he didn't think it was anything too serious. He didn't ask to be excused."
Fidler tells the court the juror thinks the doctor will just put a removable cast on his foot. He indicated that he might have trouble getting from the parking lot to the courthouse but they can arrange something with the sheriff's to take care of that.
Donna Clarkson enters the courtroom.
Judge Fidler calls for the jury to enter and once they are seated the judge addresses them. "I know you were informed ladies and gentlemen [...] as it appears to be only a one day disability [...] he injured himself while going to his car."
He tells the jurors to report back on Monday at 9:30 am.
Fidler informs the jury that these things occasionally happen and that there are bound to be more things like this come up during the trial.
Mr. Jackson leans over the railing to whisper to Mrs. Clarkson directly. "Had I known about this 20 minutes earlier, I would have called you."
From what I gathered, it appears all parties just learned about the injury about 10 minutes before. The prosecution asks the judge to order Vincent Tannazzo back to court on Monday and he does.
And that's it. I call Mr. Sprocket to tell him that I'm walking back to the Red Line. Court is over for the day.