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Phil Spector trial update: forensics a go-go

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This week the prosecution rested its case against Phil Spector, who is accused of murdering Lana Clarkson on February 3, 2003 with a tidy shot to the head.

And I do mean tidy: the "spatter" on Spector's jacket, which has been the focus of much testimony this week, consists of tiny spots, most smaller than a dime, many far littler.

The defense spent the week putting forensics experts on the stand to contradict the prosecution's forensics experts. This amounts to a lot of he said, he said. How can the members of the jury decide which experts to believe? Will they reach scientifically-based conclusions, or does it boil down to which witnesses they like more?

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And what the jury thinks is really all that matters. So the attorneys watch them as the trial progresses. If one of them starts to cry when a photo of Lana Clarkson's tongue -- severed during the autopsy -- is shown, the defense team takes note. On Thursday, after the jury was sent home for the weekend, defense attorney Robert Rosen pointed out the juror's squeamishness to the judge. Judge Fidler shrugged it off -- maybe he figures that, unless you're a coroner, a severed tongue is pretty gory.

The jurors may get a break from all this forensic stuff with a field trip to the murder scene. The defense has asked if the jury can visit Phil Spector's Alhambra home to see, in person, the foyer where Lana Clarkson died.

(Photo of Lana Clarkson from 1985's Barbarian Queen, her biggest role, and of Phil Spector in court. Their hair isn't so different after all.)

Guest Day Editor Carolyn Kellogg joins LAist with a few posts throughout the day. Read the introductory interview and check out her litblog.