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Celebrity Court Roundup

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According to the prosecution's first witnesses, Robert Blake isn't that great an actor. Despite his years as the popular television cop, Baretta, and his over 130 other film and TV appearances, people at the scene of his wife's murder weren't convinced by his odd behavior after she was shot, and the anguish that he seemingly turned on and off depending on who was in front of him.

Sean Stanek, who was the first on the scene after Blake knocked on his door requesting that he call 911, wondered in the court room why Blake didn't help him tend to his dying wife. According to Stanek, as Bonnie Lee Bakley bled in their car, Robert Blake sat curbside moaning.

The trial's most riviting moment came at the end of defense attorney M. Gerald Schwartzbach's opening arguments delivered at the beginning of the session. He was able to let Robert Blake speak for himself without cross examination by showing part of his 2002 interview with Barbara Walters on the newsprogram, "20/20."

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The trial will resume on January 4th.

Up the 101, in Santa Barbara, the Michael Jackson child molestation trial is ready to begin assembling a jury. For the trial, the city will debut its new "one step" jury selection process which features updated mailing addreses from voter registration rolls and DMV records and no preliminary mailers to potential jurors.

For the 4000 people likely to receive jury summons for this case, failure to appear will result in $1,500 fines. [Editor's note: We wonder how many of those unlucky enough to be summoned will try to "beat it."]

The trial is set to begin on January 29th.