Monday, January 1, 2007


T&T started out as a diary or journal about my experiences attending a criminal trial in person. I wanted to let others know what it was like, for me, to go to court and sit in the gallery and watch the legal process unfold.

There's a large community of people on the web who watch trials on TV or online, and who would love to attend a trial themselves, but are unable to do so. My trial coverage is aimed at those readers. I try to give the T&T reader a sense that they are sitting beside me in court, experiencing what I experience, seeing what I see, and hearing what I hear.

If you take the time to read the comments left on the stories I publish, most readers appreciate my unique style of reporting. I always strive to report accurately and transparently, but I don’t limit myself to what the mainstream media typically reports.  I write about what people wear, what I see people do, and what I hear them say, because a trial is a real-life drama on a stage where everyone has a part. In other words, I not only tell T&T readers about the action in the well of the court, but also what’s going on in the gallery.

Since 2007, T&T has covered high profile Los Angeles County murder cases including Phil Spector’s first trial and retrial, Cameron Brown’s second trial and third trial, James Fayed, former LAPD Detective Stephanie Lazarus, Kelly Soo Park and "The Grim Sleeper," Lonnie Franklin, Jr. I've also been covering the proceedings in the Michael Gargiulo case since 2012 and recently started covering the January 2017 murder of Fabio Sementilli.

Over the years, T&T has added other contributors from around the country who report cases they’ve either attended or watched online. When the T&T team covers a newsworthy event, it's because of that contributor's particular interest in the case. No one is paid for contributing to T&T, so our news budget is limited to the donations T&T receives.  T&T may not cover every case or trial that's in the news, but when it does, we do it with a dedication and passion for accuracy and in depth reporting.


I’ve had a life-long interest in true crime ever since, in my late teens, I read the Manson books, Helter Skelter and The Family. The first trial I attended in person was the Robert Blake murder trial in 2005. I wrote about my experience on Internet crime forums, where many people were interested in the Blake case and debating it. All the participants used Internet handles, not their real names. For myself, I chose the name Sprocket, who was my all-time favorite kitty.  In 2007, I attended the first Phil Spector trial during which I started Trials & Tribulations.  I decided to keep writing as Sprocket so that my earlier readers would know it was me.  While I write under a pen name, I use my real name in court and while reporting.

In January 2011, based on my track record of independent reporting, the Los Angeles County Superior Court officially recognized me as a member of the media. 

In between my frequent trips to the downtown courthouse, I have a small seasonal sewing business, Betsy Ross Linens.  In my spare time I enjoy gardening and reading.


Betsy A. Ross, aka Sprocket
T&T Founder & Owner


Editorial Assistance:
Days Like This

Guest Writers:
David in TN
KZ - (Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist )