Lawyers are appealing legendary music producer [lastfm]Phil Spector[/lastfm]’s 2009 murder conviction, citing judicial error and prosecutorial misconduct. Spector, 70, is currently serving a sentence of 19 years to life in prison for the 2003 shooting of actress Lana Clarkson.
According to Spector’s legal team, Judge Larry Paul Fidler unjustly allowed testimony from five character witnesses who spoke on the producer’s conduct before Clarkson’s death. The lawyers are also contesting that Fidler allowed prosecutors to use biased rhetoric against Spector.
In the nearly 18,000 page file submitted to the California Court of Appeals, lawyers Dennis Riordan, Donald Horgan and Charles Sevilla cite Judge Fidler’s allowance of prosecutors’ repeated use of the term “pattern” in reference to Spector’s use of firearms around women.
“Asserting that a defendant has a ‘pattern’ of violent conduct is indistinguishable from arguing that he or she has a propensity or character trait for violence,” they wrote in the appeal.
The legal team continued on to explain that while five women testified to seeing Spector with a gun in their presence, none of their testimonies “involved events in which Mr. Spector put a gun in someone’s mouth, much less fired it.”
Spector is best known for producing pop songs, primarily for 1960s female bands, as well as the Beatles 1970 album, Let it Be.
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