Spector “Can't Wash His Hands Clean of Her Murder,” Prosecutor Says

A prosecutor Monday told jurors in Phil Spector's murder retrial that actress Lana Clarkson's shooting death at his Alhambra mansion was "a death waiting to happen in his world," following alcohol-fueled, gun-related confrontations with five other women.

In her closing argument, Deputy District Attorney Truc Do told the Los Angeles Superior Court panel the evidence had proven that "Mr. Spector committed second-degree murder" in the Feb. 3, 2003, shooting death of the 40-year-old woman.

The prosecutor cited testimony from five other women who allege Spector confronted them with a gun between 1975 and 1995, and said he had played a game of Russian roulette with the women after drinking and losing control of them.

"Lana Clarkson happened to be the sixth who got the bullet," Do told jurors.

"When he's ignited, he always does the same thing -- he grabs a gun," the prosecutor said. "In every single one of these incidents, Mr. Spector demonstrates conscious disregard for human life ... Her death was a death waiting to happen in his world."

Do also told the panel that the defense had "cherry-picked" from Clarkson's e-mails to make it seem as if she was despondent about her life, although she had "persevered through those difficult times."

The prosecutor said the defense's efforts would "never change the fact that he cleaned up the scene like a guilty person" rather than using any of the 14 phones in his house to call 911 for help.


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"He tried to clean up what he messed up," Do told jurors, arguing that Spector was "acting with consciousness of guilt."

"He can wash his hands of her blood. He can't wash his hands clean of her murder," she said of the woman Spector had met just hours earlier on the Sunset Strip in West Hollywood at the House of Blues, where she had recently begun working as a VIP hostess.

The prosecutor said limousine driver Adriano De Souza was "constant and unwavering" in his account that Spector emerged from the mansion while holding a gun and said, "I think I killed somebody."

The jury -- which began hearing the case late last October -- is expected to hear Tuesday from Spector's lawyer, Doron Weinberg.

The defense attorney told jurors in his opening statement last fall that his client has "never fired a gun" at a human being, and said everything was consistent with the gunshot wound having been "self-inflicted."

The prosecution will have the last opportunity to argue before the jury gets the case.

Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Larry Paul Fidler ruled Friday that he would allow jurors to consider the lesser offense of involuntary manslaughter along with the murder charge.

That option was not given to the first jury to hear the case against Spector, which deadlocked 10-2 in September 2007, with the majority voting in favor of convicting him of murder.

At a hearing Friday, Spector's attorney told the judge he believed the new option would "confuse the jury" and be an "invitation to compromise."

Spector, renowned in music circles for the "Wall of Sound" technique he invented in the 1960s and used in his work with the Beatles and other groups, is free on $1 million bail posted shortly after his arrest.

Clarkson, who was best known for her starring role in the 1985 Roger Corman cult hit "Barbarian Queen," had bit parts on dozens of television shows and in a few well-known movies, such as 1982's "Fast Times at Ridgemont High."

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