LOS ANGELES – Rock music producer Phil Spector (search) initially told police he accidentally shot actress Lana Clarkson (search), then later said she committed suicide, according to newly released grand jury transcripts.
Spector, 64, who created rock 'n' roll's "wall of sound" recording technique, is charged with murdering Clarkson at his Alhambra mansion in 2003. He is free on $1 million bail.
The transcripts, released this week after news organizations including The Associated Press and the Los Angeles Times won a legal battle to unseal them, include testimony from police, Spector's chauffeur and women who said they were threatened by Spector.
Alhambra police Officer Beatrice Rodriguez (search) testified that Spector told officers at his home: "What's wrong with you guys? What are you doing? I didn't mean to shoot her. It was an accident."
"He changed his story and now he claimed to two separate officers at two different times at Alhambra Police Department that Lana Clarkson had blown her own brains out, that she had committed suicide," Deputy District Attorney Doug Sortino told the grand jury.
In a 2003 interview with Esquire magazine, Spector also suggested that Clarkson, 40, may have shot herself.
Spector's chauffeur, Adriano De Souza, told the grand jury he brought the couple to the producer's mansion and waited outside in the car. At 5 a.m. he heard a sound like a pop, he said, and Spector came outside minutes later holding a gun.
"I think I killed somebody," he quoted Spector as saying. In the house, De Souza said he saw Clarkson's body.
Three women also told the grand jury that Spector, in separate incidents, had acted recklessly and threatened them with a gun.
The most recent incident was at a 1999 holiday party at a Beverly Hills-area home. Deborah Strand (search) told the grand jury that when she told Spector to leave, he pointed a gun at her face.
Sortino told the grand jurors that the evidence demonstrated that Spector was guilty of implied malice, meaning he acted in such an "inherently dangerous" way that he could be responsible for murder.