Leonard Cohen Testifies On Two Days Of Trial
Coverage of Leonard Cohen’s testimony April 6 & 9, 2012 in the L.A. County Superior Court trial of Kelley Lynch (on left in above photo), accused of making harassing phone calls to Cohen and sending thousands of emails attacking him and others associated with him, and violating restraining orders, has been extensive.
These excerpts from Leonard Cohen Testifies In Ex-Business Manager’s Harassment Trial by Hailey Branson-Potts (Los Angeles Times April 7, 2012) deal with the April 6, 2012 court session:
Cohen … testified that he and Lynch had a business and personal relationship for about 17 years. At one point, he said, they had a “brief” intimate relationship. He said he fired her as his business manager in 2004. As soon as he dismissed Lynch, she began calling and emailing him, Cohen said.
“It started with just a few now and then, but it eventually accelerated to 20 or 30 a day,” said the 77-year-old singer, who is known for such hits as “Suzanne” and “Hallelujah.” The voice mail messages, Cohen said, were up to 10 minutes long. The caller leveled accusations and threats at him and said he “needed to be taken down and shot.”
“It makes me feel very conscious about my surroundings,” Cohen said. “Every time I see a car slow down, I get worried.”
For years, Cohen said, he’s been concerned for the safety of his family members, some of whom had a close relationship with Lynch.
Emails allegedly from Lynch were often 50 pages long, Cohen said.
“My sense of alarm has increased over the years as the volume of emails has increased,” he said.
The LA Times also carried the story of the April 9, 2012 court session: Singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen testifies about harassing voice mails by Hailey Branson-Potts. Excerpts follow:
Singer and songwriter Leonard Cohen took the stand again Monday in the trial of his former business manager, who has been accused of making harassing phone calls and sending him and others thousands of emails. …
Cohen … testified that several voice mails and emails from Lynch mentioned the Aryan Nations and accused Cohen of using drugs. He said Lynch sent emails about him to numerous people, including many he did not know.
“It’s not a pleasant sensation,” Cohen said. “Ms. Lynch routinely accused me of being a drug addict and many other things. Of course I didn’t like it, and I felt my reputation was being assailed and the reputation of my family.” …
In his opening statements Friday, Michael Kelly, a public defender representing Lynch, said the case “is very much about relationships and how relationships oftentimes get messy.”
Lynch is being held at Century Regional Detention Facility in Lynwood in lieu of $25,000 bail.
DrHGuy Note: Cohen’s testimony re the content and quantity of Lynch’s emails could be verified by their many recipients, including some only tenuously connected to the Canadian singer-songwriter by virtue of posting about him.
Other Coverage – “Massively Creepy,” “Death Threats” “Uncomfortable Emails”
As far as I can determine, the only facts about the trial available online are those found in the LA Times articles noted above. Other publications appear to have use the same sources, sometimes with attribution, sometimes without.
Stereogum headlined its summary of the same LA Times article, Leonard Cohen Testifies Against Massively Creepy Former Business Manager
NME headed their story Leonard Cohen tells court of former manager’s ‘death threats.’ I am uncertain why the phrase “death threats” is placed in quotes since those markings in such a context often indicate doubt about the accuracy of the words. Given that Cohen testified that Lynch said he “needed to be taken down and shot,” the term “death threats” seems warranted.
Pitchfork, in Leonard Cohen Testifies Against Former Business Manager Accused of Harassment, also goes with the “very creepy” characterization of Lynch, but then plays down the behavior by describing the charges against her as allegedly making “disturbing phone calls to Cohen” and sending “thousands of uncomfortable emails to him and his attorney.” [emphasis mine] The article goes on to point out that “Lynch has pleaded not guilty. Her lawyer, Michael Kelly, said the emails were ‘legitimate,’ and accused Cohen and his lawyers of attacking her credibility.”
Spinner references the Pitchfork article but goes with the headline Leonard Cohen Death Threats: Singer Accuses Former Manager of Harassment.
Contact Music headed their story Leonard Cohen Tells Court Ex-Partner Lied About Drug Use.
At the American Songwriter site, Leonard Cohen Testifies Against Former Manager In Ugly Suit ends with the tag line “Next Leonard Cohen album: Songs from a (Court) Room?”
KPCC wins the snarky title award with Irk of a ladies’ man: Leonard Cohen harassment trial continues.
The National Post’s Arts page yesterday featured Leonard Cohen testifies against ex-business manager charged with harassment while AsiaOne Showbiz printed Leonard Cohen accuses ex manager in court.
Credit Due Department: The photo atop this post is by Al Seib and was part of the LA Times article.