Jury deliberations begin in Fox executive's murder case

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A jury could not make a verdict Friday after closing arguments in the trial of John Creech, who's accused of murdering Fox movie executive Gavin Smith. (KABC)

A jury could not make a verdict Friday after closing arguments in the trial of a man accused of murdering a Fox movie executive.

The day began with prosecutor Bobby Grace closing out his rebuttal to John Creech's defense attorney. He described the defendant as a first-degree murderer and liar.

"You don't accidentally beat someone to death. You just don't," he said.

MORE: Jurors get tour of bloody car in trial over murder of Fox executive

Creech's defense argued he killed Fox movie executive Gavin Smith in self-defense. The prosecution said Smith and the defendant's estranged wife, Chandrika Cade, had an on-again-off-again relationship.

Grace said Creech lied about many details of the night, including searching for his drunk wife and that Smith was intruding on Creech's marriage.

Witnesses testified the defendant and Cade called it quits before Smith's death. They also claimed Creech, who's a body-builder, retreated into the arms of a high school student he was romantically involved with after allegedly killing Smith.

"The first thing he's doing is running off and getting in the bed with another woman," Grace said.

The defense countered that Creech did not bring a weapon to the confrontation. In earlier testimony, Creech claimed Smith threw the first punch and that the former film exec tried to gouge his eyes out.

Lawyers employed character assassinations throughout the trial. One of the debates centered on if Cade was a battered wife or a "gold digger," unwilling to lose Creech's income as a drug dealer.

Cade was one of four witnesses granted immunity to testify against her estranged husband.

Creech failed to notify police after Smith died. Prosecutors said he rented a storage locker to hide the exec's car and buried his body in a shallow grave at Angeles National Forest.

"I take full accountability for everything after the fact. If I could change it, I would," Creech said when he took the stand Tuesday.
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