Phil Spector, the legendary music producer who was sentenced to 19-to-life for murder, passed away in prison on Saturday. The Beatles collaborator, raised in the Bronx, was 81-years-old at the time of his death, Page Six reported this weekend.
State prison officials from California confirmed that Mr. Spector died at 6:35 pm on Saturday due to natural causes. After experiencing health complications, he was taken to a hospital away from the penitentiary where he was serving a long sentence for murdering an actress in cold blood.
Sources who spoke with TMZ claimed that Mr. Spector died from complications as a result of COVID-19, however, officials stated that his cause of death hasn’t been confirmed yet by the medical examiner.
Approximately four weeks ago, Spector was taken into the hospital for COVID-19, but he was taken back to prison after it appeared that he was getting better, only for his condition to suddenly worsen to the point where he couldn’t breathe anymore.
As it was previously reported, Spector was accused of murdering Lana Clarkson, the actress, in 2003 while at his home in LA. He was convicted for the 2003 crime in 2009. Spector told the authorities she had killed herself by accident.
After an initial mistrial in 2007, Spector was taken back to court again in 2009 where he was convicted on second-degree murder charges and sentenced to remain behind bars for the rest of his life. Spector was sentenced to 19 years, which was practically a death sentence considering his age at the time.
It was obviously a big deal when Spector was convicted and sentenced because his reputation as a music producer was of the highest esteem. John Lennon once referred to him as the “greatest record producer ever.” Phil became known for what was deemed the “Wall of Sound,” which combined vocal harmonies with instruments.
Even though he had a great reputation as an artist, Phil was also shrouded in stories about violence, including from celebs and artists like Leonard Cohen, John Lennon, and more. The Ramones, for instance, said that Spector had held them hostage while recording one of their records.