Huffpost Entertainment

Phil Spector In 'Sensitive Needs' Area Of Prison

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LOS ANGELES — Music legend Phil Spector has been assigned to a "sensitive needs facility" in California's largest state prison to serve his sentence for murdering an actress.

Spector was taken Monday to the California Substance Abuse Treatment Facility and State Prison at Corcoran, where 6,919 other inmates are housed, corrections spokeswoman Terry Thornton said.

She said Spector was assigned to the sensitive needs facility rather than general population. He doesn't have a cellmate.

As a medium security inmate, Spector can make some requests for items he wants in his cell, and his wife acknowledges her husband is already creating a list.

"He wants a TV and an iPod or something like that for listening to music," Rachelle Spector said Tuesday. "And he would like to be able to receive e-mail."

Prison Lt. Stephen Smith said Spector's notoriety probably got him into the sensitive needs facility. He said the typical inmate there needs protection after dropping out of a gang.

Spector, 69, is serving 19 years to life for the fatal shooting of actress Lana Clarkson at his castle-like home in Alhambra in 2003. He was convicted of second-degree murder in April after the first trial ended with a mistrial.

Rachelle Spector said she was relieved her husband was out of North Kern State Prison, where he has been undergoing evaluation.

She said he wrote a letter alleging abuse at the prison such as being forced to sleep naked on the floor for two nights and to eat out of a bowl with his hands "like a dog."

Thornton said the prison does not mistreat inmates and the actions described by Rachelle Spector "would be a violation of policies and laws." She said, however, any report of misconduct would be investigated.

The prison near Fresno has housed other entertainment figures. Actor Robert Downey Jr. served time there in 1999 for a probation violation in a drug conviction and wound up counseling other inmates before he was released.