Tuesday, May 22, 2007

PHIL SPECTOR'S DRIVER GRILLED AT HIS TRIAL FOR MURDER IN LOS ANGELES

Lana Clarkson and Phil Spector

Phil Spector's Brazilian chauffeur wrongly accused the music producer of shooting somebody because he was frightened and his English was poor, a court has been told.Adriano De Souza previously testified Spector had emerged from his Los Angeles mansion - where actress Lana Clarkson was found dead from a shot to the mouth - clutching a revolver on February 3, 2003, and confessed "I think I killed somebody". However, during cross-examination yesterday , Spector's defence attorney Bradley Brunon put it to the immigrant driver that he had misheard his boss. He asked: "Do you think you might have heard, 'I think somebody was killed?' " De Souza - whose native language is Portuguese - replied: "No." The former chauffeur conceded that he was tired, hungry and frightened after seeing Clarkson's body slumped in a chair and her face covered in blood in the early hours of the morning. Brunon asked: "It's hard to see and hear exactly when something is so frightening, isn't it?" De Souza replied: "Yes, a little bit." Brunon also explained to the court that De Souza originally told police officers Spector said "I think I shot somebody" - a slight but important variation on what he said in his testimony earlier this month. He also showed him a transcript of a police interview given less that 24 hours after the shooting, in which he was asked if he could recall Spector's exact words. In the statement, De Souza said: "I think so. I think, I'm not sure. It's my English." Spector, 67, denies murder and his lawyers claim Clarkson accidentally shot herself.

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