Monday, January 12, 2009

Phil spector Retrial: Day Twenty-five

Monday, January 12th, 2008

Prosecution Witnesses:

#30 Dr. John Andrews (LA Co. Deputy Coroner and Forensic Neuropathologist; assisted autopsy on Ms. Clarkson's brain and spinal cord; testimony complete)

#31 Dale S. Falcion (LA Co. Sheriff's Office criminalist; did fingerprint comparisons on evidence found at the scene to Phil Spector and Lana Clarkson; testimony complete)

#32 Dr. Lynne Herold (LA Co. Sheriff's Office senior criminalist, blood spatter analyst and crime scene re constructionist; currently under direct examination)

Accredited Press inside the courtroom: None identified.

Has the murder weapon revealed new evidence?

See that tiny piece of metal on the inside portion of the handle of the gun? That's called the "front strap" of the gun. When the gun was examined back in 2003, a tiny partial print was discovered on this piece of metal that's only about three-eighth's of an inch wide. The partial print is even smaller than that. At the time, forensic examiners determined that this print had "no value" for comparison purposes but today, this tiny, partial print may tell us something about when that print got on the weapon and who possibly could have placed it there.

In September of last year, Mr. Falcion was asked by Mr. Jackson to take a look at enlarged micro-photographs of the "front strap" on the Colt Cobra. There is a partial print of some type but it is of no value to compare to a latent print. However, Mr. Jackson asked Falcion if he had an opinion as to whether the print came first, or if the blood came first. Was the print left in the blood after the gun was covered in blood? Falcion testified that it was his expert opinion that the print was left in wet blood already on the front strap. Since we have heard expert testimony that once Lana Clarkson was shot, she was immediately rendered incapacitated, there is only one other individual who could have left that partial print on the gun: Philip Spector.

In the afternoon session, memorable Dr. Lynne Herold took the stand and placed Spector's white ladies jacket he was wearing on the night of the murder within "two to three feet" of the gun firing.

More to come, when I find the time.


CaliGirl9 said...

Interesting … see what happens when evidence lies around and forensic scientists and intelligent prosecutors take a second look!

Go AJ! Go Truc! Serve up that justice!

Anonymous said...

I have a couple questions about the print and what it could mean.

It seems pretty well proven that the gun belonged to Spector from the unusual ammunition.

There is also the testimony of Adriano de Souza that Spector came out and said, "I think I killed somebody" and that he was holding a gun at the time. Then there is the fact that gun was wiped down and had no prints.

What exactly could a single latent print on top of the blood indicate? That Spector held it and then subsequently wiped it down? He must have wiped it down after he came out the door if he was holding it in his bare hand and it had no prints.

But what else can be deduced from this?

Lynn Harold: she is very clear and calm, looking forward to hearing more about the testimony.

Thank you Sprocket for your great reporting.

ret FL PI said...

I am thankful for your trial coverage, Court TV should have come back for the second trial.
I respect that you did not lower yourself to make any comments about the goings on, on Mrs. Spector's blog.
I have followed this trial and am wondering how the gun got from Spector's hand back to the floor by Lanna, Has this been addressed? The 911 call clearly states that De Souza saw Spector with the gun. This is moments after the shooting. He stated
"I think, my boss killed somebody.He has a lady on the floor and a gun in his hand.
I think he, he killed her."
Officer Brandon Cardella, from the Alhambra Police Dept.
observed the gun under her left calf. He's certain that in the take down, he did not disturb the gun.
It is clear the defence is trying to stall the case till he can croak before the trial ends.

shari said...

Very interesting! Thanx Sprocket....

CourtWatcher said...

I'm so glad there's something NEW to throw out there. PS should have been sitting behind bars 7 years ago. Thanks, Sprocket, for your hard work and dedication. I SO wish there was a place on the 'net to watch this trial. I watched the first one via and was glued to my seat all summer. Without you, we wouldn't know ANYTHING about the re-trial. So thank you again.

Sprocket said...

The defense condends that Lana shot herself, and that De Souza was mistaken in what he heard and what he saw. They don't accept De Souza's testimony that he actually "saw" the gun. Ergo, the defense goes forward as if this testimony is not substantiated by anything.

Guns and their surfaces are designed to "not" hold fingerprints, and that front strap is very tiny. The leather on the handle is raised in a geometric pattern...(Dr. Herold said the pattern in the leather handle reminded her of [the skin of] a pineapple.)...which means it's difficult to get a fingerprint on the the handle area.

Dr. Herold's opinion is, is that the gun was gone over with something that was wet, because of the "mottling" on several surface areas. She did say that there is no scientific procedure to "test" that observation. She also said that on the right side of the gun, there "appears" to be an impression of a fabric pattern, but she can not tell what type of fabric or surfaces might have left that impression.

I don't know for a fact that the defense is "stalling" to wait until Spector "croaks," but I do believe there have been other delay tactics over the years by different attorney's assigned to the case. For example, the case was delayed until "September" of last year because Chris Plourd was still listed as co counsel and he would not be free from trial until then. When the trial starts, suddenly he's no longer on the case.