Tuesday, June 2, 2009

PHIL SPECTOR CIVIL CASE MOTIONS

I finally took a drive to Pasadena and obtained copies of the motions granted and denied on May 26th, in the civil case.

There are about 10 pages to the Clarkson motion that was granted and 18 or so pages to the Spector stay motion that was denied. Since I'm helping Mr. Sprocket with the big work truck today, ~yesterday, he had to rebuild the fuse box from scratch and today the strut and a wood floor will be installed~ I'm only typing out the most interesting parts of the motions.

Plaintiff Motion:

PAGE 1

John C. Taylor, State Bar No. 78389
TAYLOR & RING, LLP
10900 Wilshire Boulevard, Suite 920
Los Angeles, California 90024
(telephone #'s & fax # excised)

Roderick J. Lindblom, State Bar No. 153768
LAW OFFICES OF RODERICK J. LINDBLOM
9935 S. Santa Monica Boulevard
Beverly Hills, California 90212
(telephone #'s & fax # excised)

Attorneys for Plaintiff

SUPERIOR COURT OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA

FOR THE COUNTY OF LOS ANGELES, NORTHEAST DISTRICT

DONNA CLARKSON, individually, and as Successor in Interest to LANA CLARKSON

Plaintiffs,

vs

PHIL SPECTOR, aka PHILLIP SPECTOR, aka HARVEY PHILLIP SPECTOR, and DOES 1 through 20, Inclusive,

Defendants.

CASE NO. GC034858
[Assigned to the Honorable Jan A. Puim, Dept. P]

PLAINTIFF'S MOTION FOR LEAVE TO PERMIT PRETRIAL DISCOVERY OF FINANCIAL ASSETS

Date: May 19, 2009
Time: 8:30 a.m.
Dept.: P

TO ALL PARTIES AND THEIR ATTORNEYS OF RECORD:

PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that on May 19, 2009 at 8:30 a.m. or as soon as the matter may be heard in Department P of the above entitled court, located at 300. Walnut Street, Pasadena, California, plaintiff will seek leave to allow discovery of defendant Phil Spector's assets and financial condition pursuant to Civil Code sections 3294(d) and 3295(c).

PAGE 2

The motion is made and based upon the grounds this material is relevant to the subject matter of the action or will lead to the discovery of admissible evidence, that there is a substantial probability that plaintiff will prevail on her punitive damage claim, and that a prima facia case for an award of punitive damages has been established because the evidence shows that decedent Lana Clarkson died as a result of a homicide for which defendant SPECTOR was convicted of a felony.

PLAINTIFF ALSO REQUESTS JUDICIAL NOTICE pursuant to Evidence Code section 452 of the minute order of April 13, 2009, entered in the criminal case entitiled People v. Phillip Spector, LASC no. BA255233 which establishes that defendant SPECTOR has been convicted of a felony for the death of Lana Clarkson.

The motion is based on the attached Memorandum of Points and Authorities, and on such oral and documentary evidence as may be introduced at the time of the hearing of this motion.

Dated: April 23, 2009

TAYLOR & RING, LLP
By:
(signature)
John C. Taylor
Attorneys for Plaintiff

PAGE 3

INTRODUCTION

This is a wrongful death case arising out of the murder of Lana Clarkson on February 3, 2003. At approximately 2:30 a.m. on February 3, 2003, decedent Lana Clarkson left her job at the House of Blues on Sunset Blvd, in Los Angeles and accompanied defendant SPECTOR to his Alhambra home. Approximately two and one half hours later defendant SPECTOR placed a gun in the mouth of Ms. Clarkson and shot and killed her. At the time SPECTOR killed Ms. Clarkson, she was seated in a chair in a foyer of defendant's home, fully clothed, with her purse over her shoulder.

Defendant confessed to his crime within minutes, telling his chauffeur, who was waiting outside the residence to drive Ms. Clarkson back to her car, "I think I killed somebody."

On April 13, 2009, after a five month jury trial, defendant SPECTOR was convicted of second degree murder (PC 187(A)) with a further finding that SPECTOR committed the murder with a firearm (PC 12022.5(A)(1)). See Minute Order attached as Exhibit A. SPECTOR was remanded to jail where he awaits sentencing on May 29, 2009. SPECTOR is facing an 18 year to life sentence for this crime.

MEMORANDUM OF POINTS AND AUTHORITIES

DISCOVERY OF DEFENDANT'S ASSETS SHOULD BE ALLOWED BECAUSE THE IS A SUBSTANTIAL PROBABILITY THAT PLAINTIFF WILL PREVAIL ON THE ISSUE OF PUNITIVE DAMAGES

Defendant SPECTOR is potentially liable for punitive damages because he has been convicted of a felony. Civil Code section 3294(d) [punitive damages may be recovered ... based upon a death which resulted from a homicide for which the defendant has been convicted of a felony..."]

"Upon motion by the plaintiff supported by appropriate affidavits and after a hearing, if the court deems a hearing to be necessary, the court may at any time enter an order permitting the discovery otherwise prohibited by this subdividion if the court finds, on the basis of the supporting and opposing affidavits presented, that the plaintiff has established that there is a substantial probability that the plaintiff will prevail on the claim pursuant to Section 3294." Adams v. Murakami (1991) 54 Cal.3d 105.

PAGE 4

Given the facts of the case and the felony conviction, there is a substantial probability that plaintiff will prevail in her claim for punitive damages.

Discovery into SPECTOR's asssets should not be delayed.

In light of the ruling in Adams, supra, it has been recognized that "it will be necessary to conduct extensive discovery of the defendant's finances, assets and holdings." Douglas v. Ostemier (1991) 1 Cal.App.4th 729, 747. The Adams court expressly encouraged the use of pretrial discovery, "The plaintiff may also obtain pretrial discovery of [financial] information. 'Like the Colt revolver made all men in the west the same size, discovery procedures reduce the advantage the giant corporations [or any defendant] otherwise have over the individual plaintiff in litigation, and if the goal is a large verdict, such discovery procedures should not be used sparingly.' (Citation.) We see no reason why it is even slightly unfair to require a plaintiff to use the procedures available." 54 Cal.3d at 122.

Discovery into defendant SPECTOR'S assets may require such extensive efforts and should not be delayed until after the commencement of trial. George v. International Society for Krishna Consciousness (1992) 3 Cal.App.4th 52, 119 [noting that a recess of several months would be necessary to avoid unnecessarily prolonging the trial]. Indeed, in light of the mandate of C.C. 3295(d) that "[e]vidence of profit and financial condition shall be presented to the same trier of fact that found for the plaintiff" discovery must be allowed now to avoid any potential recess so that plaintiff will be ready to present evidence during the punitive damage phase of trial.

The motion should be granted because:

(1) financial information material is relevant to the subject matter of the action or will lead to the discovery of admissible evidence;

(2) there is a substantial probability that plaintiff will prevail on perpunitive damage claim; and

PAGE 5

(3) a prima facie case for an award of punitive damages has been established because of defendant's felony conviction.

Dated: April 23, 2009

TAYLOR & RING, LLP
By:
(signature)
John C. Taylor
Attorneys for Plaintiff

__________________

Defendant Motion:

CALENDO, PUCKETT, SHEEDY, & DICORRADO
701 North Brand Boulevard - Suite 300
Glendale, California 92103
(telephone #'s & fax # excised)

C.M. Sheedy, Equ. - Bar No. 113611
Attorneys for Defendant
PHIL SPECTOR
0214-0072CMS

SUPERIOR COURT OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA

COUNTY OF LOS ANGELES, NORTHEAST DISTRICT

DONNA CLARKSON, individually, and as Successor in Interest to LANA CLARKSON

Plaintiffs,

vs

PHIL SPECTOR, aka PHILLIP SPECTOR, aka HARVEY PHILLIP SPECTOR, and DOES 1 through 20, Inclusive,

Defendants.

CASE NO. GC034858, Assigned to Dept. P, Judge Jan Pluim

NOTICE OF MOTION FOR STAY OF DISCOVERY INCLUDING INTERROGATORIES, REQUEST FOR IDENTIFICATION AND PRODUCTION OF DOCUMENTS AND REQUEST FOR ADMISSIONS AND THE TAKING OF DEFENDANT'S DEPOSITION, OR ALTERNATIVELY FOR PROTECTIVE ORDER TO EXTEND THE TIME OT RESPOND TO REQUESTS FOR WRITTEN DISCOVERY AND TO PREVENT THE TAKING OF DEFENDANT'S DEPOSITION FOR A PERIOD OF AT LEAST 120 DAYS; DECLARATIONS OF C.M. SHEEDY AND DORON WEINBERG; MEMORANDUM OF POINTS AND AUTHORITIES; [PROPOSED] ORDER

Date:
Time:
Dept:

Complaint Filed: 2/2/05
Trial Date: None Set

TO ALL PARTIES AND/OR THEIR ATTORNEYS OF RECORD:

PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that on ______________, 2009, at _______ a.m., in Department "P" of this Court, located at 300 East Walnut

PAGE 2

Street, Pasadena, California, Defendant Phil Spector (Hereinafter referred to as "Mr. Spector") will move this Court for an order staying discovery specifically, any Form Interrogatories, Special Interrogatories, Request for Identification and Production of Documents and Request for Admissions propounded by any party and the taking of Mr. Spector's deposition in this action until all issues related to the criminal proceedings arising out of this incident have been resolved. Alternatively, Mr. Spector moves for a protective order extending the time to respond to requests for written discovery and to prevent the taking of Mr. Spector's deposition for a period of at least 120 days.

This motion is made on the grounds that Mr. Spector's sentencing hearing is scheduled for May 29, 2009. It is anticipated Mr. Spector will be rquesting a new trial at the time of his sentencing hearing or perfecting an appellate right. This will likely necessitate the continuance of the sentencing hearing. In light of the gravity of the criminal proceedings, it would be prejudicial to proceed with discovery in the civil matter until all related criminal issues have been resolved.

THIS MOTION WILL BE BASED upon this Notice, upon the Declarations of C.M. SHEEDY and DORON WEINBERG, attached hereto and filed and served herewith; upon the attached Memorandum of Points and Authorities; and upon such matter of which this Court may take judicial notice, as may be set forth hereinafter.

PAGE 3

DATED: May 4, 2009

CALENDO, PUCKETT, SHEEDY & DiCORRADO By:
(signature)

C.M. Sheedy
Attorneys for Defendant
PHIL SPECTOR

PAGE 4, line 1; lines 15 - 27

DECLARATION OF C.M. SHEEDY

4. On or about April 13, 2009, a jury returned a verdict of "guilty" for second degree murder. Mr. Spector was taken into custody. He is scheduled to return to court on May 29th, 2009 for sentencing. Defense counsel is not privy to the confidential criminal proceedings, or strategies by Mr. Spector's crimnal attorneys, but it is anticipated Mr. Spector will likely be requesting a new trial at the time of his sentencing hearing or perfecting an appellate right. This will likely necessitate the continuance of the sentencing hearing. Mr. Spector will have 60 days from the sentencing hearing to file a Notice of Appeal, but the actual dates set by the criminal court vary, especially in high profile and lengthy matters such as the one concerning Mr. Spector.

PAGE 5, lines 4-28

6. On or about April 27, 2009, in a good faith effort to meet and confer on the issues and prevent the necessity of a motion, I wrote to Plaintiff's attorneys and requested they stipulate to stay discovery, namely the service of Form Interrogatories, Inspection Demands, Request for Admissions and the taking of Mr. Spector's deposition for 120 days. Plaintiff's counsel advised he would not agree to a further stay of the discovery process.

7. Mr. Spector intends to invoke his privileges not to testify against himself until all issues regarding the criminal action has been resolved. He cannot engage in discovery in this present action without being compelled to waive his privileges against self-incrimination under the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments of the United States Constitution.

8. Mr. Spector will be severely and irreparably prejudiced if required to proceed with discovery in this civil action where his deposition testimony and/or responses to written discovery can potentially be used against him in the criminal action.

9. On behalf of Mr. Spector, I respectfully request that the Court grant an order staying discovery specifically, any Form Interrogatories, Special Interrogatories, Request for Identification and Production of Documents and Request for Admissions propounded by any party and the taking of Mr. Spector's deposition in this action until the completion of all issues related to the criminal proceedings have been resolved.

PAGE 7 (Exhibit)

DECLARATION OF DORON WEINBERG

I, DORON WEINBERG, declare:

1. I am an attorney duly licensed to practice law in the State of California. I am representing PHIL SPECTOR with regard to the criminal case which arises from the February 3, 2003 incident.

2. Due to the gravity of the charges pending gainst Mr. Spector, he will not be permitted to testify at deposition or respond to any form of written discovery which related to the February 3, 2003 incident. This is due to the potential impact it could have on Mr. Spector's pending crimnal case. If Plaintiff's counsel attempts to inquire at deposition or propound any written discovery in that regard, Mr. Spector will be asserting his right against self-incrimination, pursuant to the Fifth Amendment of the United States Constitution and the California Constitution. This right will be asserted until the appeal process in the criminal case has been completed.

I declare under penalty of perjury under the laws of the State of California that the foregoing is true and correct, and that I executed this declaration on May 3, 2009 at San Francisco, California.

(signature)
DORON WIENBERG
Declarant

-----end of transcription of motions

It will be interesting to finally see what Spector's financial position really is at this point. It's my understanding that Taylor & Ring have an excellent reputation in ferreting out hidden assets.

21 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for going beyond the call of duty by hand-typing and entering this!!

Yes it will be interesting to find out the assets....so much variance in the press about it. I do believe--barring a collapse in the high-end collectable market in the current economy--that his music artifacts are very valuable. And his "attorney of record" is likely to change, as we know the homeowner insurance carrier will do their best to get out from under any liability (as well they should).
Wes J.

I am p0rtia said...

Sure is interesting that the notice states "It is anticipated Mr. Spector will be rquesting a new trial at the time of his sentencing hearing or perfecting an appellate right." Remember how Fidler had to request the Defense to do this (request a new trial, and how Weinberg stated that it was only out of "an abundance of caution" that he did so? Deep waters.... BTW, since I've been reading T&T since PS1, and this is my first comment, I want to add my name to the list of grateful followers. Good job, Sprocket. EL

shari said...

Isn't it possible that any assets have successfully been turned over to another "name" and may not be accessible to the court? I can see Spector turning over assets to someone (not Rachelle LOL) to avoid this whole situation.

Anonymous said...

The loss of the Spector case appears to be having a lingering effect on Doron Weinberg. In his next case, the Dr. William Ayres child molestation trial, he is neither swaggering nor acting confident.

Something tells us he's going to lose the Ayres case too.

Anonymous said...

So it sounds as though the civil trial will simply procede without the defendant saying anything "for the record", whether by deposition or on the stand.

For those interested in the current Weinberg case by someone who is apparently attending court, check this blog:
williamayreswatch.blogspot.com

katfish said...

I was a little surprised to see Weinberg filing a motion in the civil case. I realize his motion states he is counsel for the criminal case and asks for the stay because of the impact the civil trial might have on his appeal, but it just seems odd. I didn't realize Weinberg would have standing with the civil court.

Do you know if CM Sheedy is counsel for Spector's homeowner's insurance? If so, has there been any buzz on them pulling out?

Please thank Mr. Sprocket for us...you know....giving you some time off the "white whale project" to drive to Pacedena and type all this up. We know he has been working you like a "dog" instead of the "cat" that you are. LOL

Sprocket said...

Hey there katfish!

Weinberg did NOT file a motion in the civil case. Weinberg made a signed statement that was included as a part of Sheedy's motion to stay.

Yes, Sheedy IS the current counsel assigned via Spector's homeowner's insurance policy. As far as I know at this point, there have been no efforts to remove himself as attorney of record. If that happens, it would be in front of a totally different judge from Judge Pluim.

Anonymous said...

Seems to me the insurance company would direct their attorney to file papers to back out of the case ASAP....it could be in the works right now. Also in the works would be a copy of the insurance policy to the Clarkson attorneys to see what valuables are covered in the homeowner/auto policies.

Anonymous said...

I just thought of something: can spouses be subpoenaed in civil cases? I bet there would be some information there, if she would only be willing to tell it. She is making no effort to high-tale it out of there, that leads me to believe there is money to support her--at least for now.

Anonymous said...

I've been thinking that it is quite possible Phil's castle would have to be sold to meet some of his debts either from the murder trials or the civil suit the Clarkson family will win. That will really infuriate Phil. And then we shall see the spouse 'high tale' it out (love that expression, my mom used to say it).
Last but not least, the only thing twittering these days are Phil's eyelids. He looks rough.

Anonymous said...

I just got home from a vacation. I didn't have access to the internet where I was and am just now catching up on the sentencing and subsequent filings.
So, he got a minimum of 15 years and it could be life. Bravo! Whenever the money for Ms. Rachelle dries up, do you think we will see a filing for divorce? I think that would happen before any conjugal visits. Just the word-picture alone is disturbing.
I am so glad that you made it into the court room Sprocket. After two trials, you deserved that. Mr. Jackson has to have a measure of peace now as does Ms. Do and all the attornies from trial #1.
I hope Mrs. Clarkson and family can take a measure of peace knowing that the gnome is behind bars til the end now.
I can't believe I missed the sentencing after all this time. Oh well, at least the outcome was satisfactory. He's done.
Thank you again Sprocket. Now maybe you can have a normal life for awhile til the next trial that catches your eye.
Tess

Anonymous said...

"Phil Spector's wife speaks to Inside Edition":
http://insideedition.com/news.aspx?storyId=3007

Sprocket said...

Inside Edition: rotflmao.

Note that it's not "Dateline" or "20/20," but a tabloid gossip show.

Besides that, does anyone really care what Mrs. Spector has to say?

Anonymous said...

Rachelle is on ABC News telling how they need money for Phil's appeal and how she's running his business. I thought it was funny she said there was none of Phil's DNA on the gun.LOL You are right Sprocket about her hair. Poor kid can't afford to go to the beauty shop anymore.What will she get out of this deal?

Anonymous said...

I agree, the hair looks like the sweeping end of a broom.

http://vipchain.com/2009/06/03/phil-spectors-wife-stands-by-her-man/

Anonymous said...

Link to the 1 hr 41 min documentary "Agony and Ectasy of Phil Spector" and another 47 minute documentary. Must download the free viewer on this site to see them.
http://www.veoh.com/search/videos/q/phil+spector#

Anonymous said...

"My husband's pretty tapped out right now....will have to take out loans to fund the appeal":
http://abclocal.go.com/kabc/story?section=news/local/los_angeles&id=6847153

Anonymous said...

"Trust me, he's not a Monster":
http://67.59.172.92/article/More_Local_News/More_Local_News/Trust_Me_Hes_Not_A_Monster/64757

Also another interview by Harriet Ryan in the LA Times of a similar nature, posted today 6/4.

Anonymous said...

Here is a link to a new LA Times story about Rachelle Spector and both trials. She is no longer under a gag order, and lets loose a lot of nonsense. It is interesting to read.

Ray

http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-et-rachelle-spector5-2009jun05,0,7342546.story

Anonymous said...

TMZ has a Spector blurb....He is on the move...out of the jail.

nd said...

Hi Sprocket! Thank you thank you thank you, once again! It's fascinating to see the details of this civil trial and I LOVE that these top bloodhounds are sniffing out his assets. Ha!
I just saw on TMZ.com that Lana's killer is being moved up to North Kern State Prison...
"Spector was chained up at his waist, legs and wrists and loaded onto a "hidden transport vehicle" -- which will take him from his old cell in Downtown L.A. to his new temporary home -- North Kern State Prison, which is right near Bakersfield, California. We're told Spector could stay at Kern for up to 6 months while officials will evaluate him and decide which house of detention he will spend the rest of his life."