8:38 am: Our train has less than a minute before it takes off. The car I’m in still has a few empty seats. It’s nice to get down on the lower platform early enough so that I can grab a seat facing forward for the 26 minute ride. Before we were allowed to board, there was a man who had fallen asleep in this car and the sheriff had to roust him. Usually, they do a security sweep of the train before it takes of from North Hollywood. For those of you who don’t know, the famous flyer Amelia Earhart, was from North Hollywood. There is a park at Magnolia Blvd. and the 170 Freeway that is named after her. The entire upper platform of the North Hollywood Red Line Station has tile murals done in her honor. Even the pillars that hold up the train platform on the lower level are meant to resemble the wings of a plane. (Think a carpenter’s biscuit.)
The gentleman beside me just asked if I was a screenwriter. “No, no,” I reply. The ride seems a bit bumpy today. I won’t know until I get on the 9th floor if the jury will deliberate today. Someone had asked earlier if I could just call the court to find out. I’m not positive, but I don’t think Wendy gets to work until 8:30 am. I am waiting to get on the train by then at the lower platform where there is no phone service. Besides, I don’t want to be a pest by calling her every morning. I’d rather find out like many of the other reporters do, and that’s by dropping by the courtroom and waiting to speak with the PIO staff member.
Boy! That gentleman really wanted to be chatty with me this morning. I couldn’t hear a word that he said. Thankfully, he got off at the last stop. We’re at Hollywood Western Station. Still early in our trip, but at 8:50 am, I’m wondering if we are a minute or two behind schedule. For the longest time, I used to think there was a large repair on the tunnel wall of the Vermont Beverly Station. That was until Mr. Sprocket dropped me off at that station on the morning of February 4th. That’s when I realized that the decor of that station is made to look like there are places where the bare, unfinished rock is still sticking out. Even the entrance is made to look like it’s dug under a mountain.
Mr. Sprocket found a new screen for me in Texas for only $79.00. It had the best warranty, one year, so thank you Texas. It will be here in two to five days. It’s 8:58 am, and we just arrived at the Wilshire/Vermont station. This is the first transfer point (headed east) to get on the Purple Line. This station is different that the rest in that the tracks are ontop of one another instead of on the same level.
9:24 am: I'm inside the courtroom. The jurors are deliberating. When I first walked in Wendy said, "They're here." It's only a 1/2 day today.
9:25 am: BUZZ! The jurors have started deliberating.
9:32 am: Gary from KNBC came in. That's all that's here. Allan Parachini is busy at the other end of the courtroom back row, working on his laptop. I will say this for the PIO department, they multi-task.
Answering a comment. I have no idea why In Sessions message boards are down. They don't tell me.
Answering a comment. The first trial did not have to replace any jurors with an alternate.
9:40 am: Linda Deutsch and Sherri arrive at the same time. Linda asks for the time Linda decides that she needs to drop her things off at her desk on the 12th floor. She asks Allan to let her know if anything happens. Allan smiling says, "You'll be the first to know." Right after she leaves, Paul from CNN arrives and asks for some stats on the days of trial and hours of deliberation so far. The reporter for City News sticks their head in and asks when deliberations started. Once he finds out, he takes off.
Another hearing is setting up right now. I'm not going to write anything on it because I don't want to report an error again.
9:47 am: The bailiff took a big bucket of ice into the jury room.
Answering a comment. I do not know what juror was ill yesterday. If the opportunity arises, I'll ask.
Answering a comment. There was no explanation as to the two male, Y marker's on Spector's private parts. It was just what was found. Understand that the only part of the profile that was detectable, were the Y markers. That was it. All us us could have tiny amounts of DNA from other people on us that probably got there under innocent means.
Answering a comment. Next Monday, I will only be able to be here in court in the morning. I will not be able to stay for the afternoon session. I will try to arrange something to get a notice out if the verdict comes in while I'm gone.
10:03 am: It's very quiet now. A moment ago, there was a bit of laughter at Wendy's desk with one of the court reporters and someone who came in to drop something off. Sherri is reading a book, Linda is reading the paper, Allan Parachini is still hard at work, Paul is on his blackberry and Gary is like me, just waiting.
Answering a comment. I have no aspirations to pursue a career as a writer or in broadcasting. Y'all have way more confidence in my abilities than my own perspective. However, if an offer came my way, I'd consider it but understand my desire would be to get back to sewing and creating with fabric.
Answering a comment: How many readers? That's hard to say. I will point you to the stat counter near the top of the blog. Although there are entries that are dated from February, 2007, the blog was created in June of that year.
Answering a comment. Please have patience with this jury. They've been through a lot. Give them some time to do their job.
10:14 am: Katie and Lisa arrive and immediately ask what's the latest. Linda from San Diego did not come today. I totally understand that. She can't get a train back home until 3:25 pm, and would be stuck at the courthouse from noon until then.
10:16 am BUZZ! The jury is taking a break.
Answering a comment. The ice could have been for cold drinks. Who knows.
10:30 am: BUZZ! The jury is back on the job.
Katie and Lisa leave to go check on a verdict in another case they have been watching. A moment ago, just before the buzz, the City News reporter came down to give me some nice compliments about the blog. He read it for the first time this morning. Thank you!
10:34 am: A smiling Joshua (the DA's clerk on this case) stopped in to speak to Wendy. This could be about anything, it's not necessarily about this case.
10:39 am: Sometime soon, T&T will be receiving a message/report from In Session's very own Beth Karas! As soon as I receive it, I will publish it.
Answering a comment. The makeup of the jury. Six men, six women of Caucasian, Asian and Spanish/Latin descent. I made a conscious choice not to go look at their jury questionnaires.
It's very boring right now.
10:54 am: Katie came back and tells me they are going to have a "readback" on this other case. It's three gang members on trial for murder in a courtroom at the other end of the hall.
11:11 am: Katie and I were just looking over some information on the Cameron Brown case online. I find it to be an interesting case and one I "might" follow next. It will just depend on several other factors. One is how early Pastor starts his courtroom: 8:30 am. Ouch! That would mean I'd have to get up a full hour earlier than I have for Spector.
We're hearing some door closings in the jury room. My guess is, the bathroom is getting a workout.
Answering a comment. We know that a foreperson was selected. It's juror #1. We don't know what the ice was for. I'm not going to ask. It could be for a cooler for all we know. I've been told that the court does not have the juror's names, only their juror number and a contact phone number. Y'all can continue to speculate but there is no evidence that a juror has been bribed or that their privacy has been compromised.
11:31 am: I must be asleep at the wheel here. Another reporter slipped in and is in the third bench row, reading a book. I've seen this reporter off and on during the second trial, but I do not know their name or affiliation.
11:34 am: It sounds like Wendy was just on the phone lining up a potential lunch for next Monday. Something about a particular type of cookie they liked.
Answering a comment. Court ends at 12 noon today.
11:37 am: BUZZ! Deliberations have stopped. Sounds like the jury is done for the day. We'll know in a moment if they come out soon. The bailiff isn't in the room currently.
11:42 am: Still waiting.
11:45 am: Kyles, the bailiff is here. I hope they will be exiting soon.
11:46 am: Judge Fidler comes and and says to Allan Parachini, "Care for a visit?"
The jury exits. There are some smiles, some frowns. They all wave goodbye to Wendy. That's it.
I'm off now. I'll post Beth Karas's report as soon as I get it after I get home.
1:12 pm: I'm home! Here's a message from the lovely Beth Karas:
I had hoped there would be a verdict in Spector’s trial when I was in LA earlier this week. Alas, no such luck. In my travels around the country I find there’s a lot of interest in this case but I rarely find anyone who believes that Lana Clarkson killed herself. I’m eager to see if this jury agrees. I’m heading to Colorado next week for a new live trial. I’ll post details on the In Session blog at CNN.com/crime and my facebook page.
Thank you Beth!
Update: Saturday, April 11, 2009
I am working on setting up a bit of a round about way to have coverage of Monday afternoon. Linda from San Diego will call one of T&T's great co-bloggers, ritanita, who will then post the buzz updates. If there is a verdict, ritanita will be sending out the mass email notices that a verdict has been reached. Sprocket.