All kinds of drama unfolded Wednesday in one of the more turbulent days of the Anthony Pellicano trial, with ex-journalist Anita Busch following fork-tongued Michael Ovitz to a slow death on the witness stand. As if you had to ask, the cross-examination showdown between Busch and Pellicano — whom the writer all but accused in court of infamously harrassing her out of writing articles about Ovitz after joining the LA Times — did not go smoothly:
Under stern cross-examination by Pellicano, who was wearing green prison drab and white sneakers, Busch became emotional again.
"I was scared 24/7 for my life," she said. "I didn't know how I was going to survive financially. I thought (the book) would be the way to do it, but I realized it was not the right way. It was a big mistake. After the threats and everything happened to me, I couldn't focus. Because of the wiretap, my sources fell away. I struggled to be a journalist, but I couldn't continue. I couldn't see a future, I saw everything slipping away. I didn't know what I was going to do."
At this point Busch couldn't speak and dabbed at her eyes with a handkerchief. "It was a relentless attack, Mr. Pellicano, as you know."
The judge wasn't having any of that. Nor, alas, will he have any more of Ovitz slithering out of a criminal courtroom; as Allison Hope Weiner noted late Wednesday at The Huffington Post, California's statute of limitations put an end to that hope:
A source close to the case (who didn't want to be identified because they believe that Mr. Ovitz should have been charged) happened to mention that the statute runs out today on any charges in connection with Mr. Ovitz's alleged wiretapping of his enemies (including Ms. Busch). So, the good news for Mr. Ovitz is that unless he committed perjury today during his testimony today, he's in the clear.
However, Busch's civil case against Ovitz still has a future pending the outcome of the Pellicano verdict, and there's always that hovering rumor of CAA's Bryan Lourd and Kevin Huvane laying waste to their former boss with a civil charge of their own. God's spokespeople, meanwhile, declined comment on the status of Ovitz's pending damnation, suggesting the potential civil verdicts would eventually influence the temperature of his eternity. We can hardly wait.