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Last Updated: Tuesday, 5 October, 2004, 08:21 GMT 09:21 UK
TV can cover Zeta 'stalker' case
Dawnette Knight
Dawnette Knight faces up to 19 years in prison
TV cameras will be allowed to film pre-trial hearings in the case of a woman accused of stalking actress Catherine Zeta Jones, a judge has ruled.

But Judge David Mintz said witnesses will not be filmed, as they include undercover detectives.

Dawnette Knight pleaded not guilty to one charge of stalking and 24 of making criminal threats against the actress.

The Los Angeles Superior Court judge has yet to decide if TV cameras will be allowed into the 10 November trial.

'Copycat' fear

Lawyers for Zeta Jones had asked the court to bar cameras to avoid influencing potential jurors and to discourage "copycat" crimes.

Ms Knight, 33, is alleged to have sent threatening letters to actor Michael Douglas, Zeta Jones' husband.

One letter read: "We are going to slice her up like meat on a bone and feed her to the dogs."

The couple receive an award for the 2001 film Traffic, in which they both starred
Douglas starred alongside his wife in the 2001 film Traffic
Prosecutors claim she sent 19 such letters and threatened the British-born actress over the telephone when Zeta Jones was filming the movie Ocean's Twelve in Amsterdam.

Welsh-born star Zeta Jones, 35, said the "satanic threats" left her on the verge of a nervous breakdown.

Ms Knight, who was arrested on June 3, allegedly apologised in another letter, claiming she had been in love with Douglas.

Following a previous pre-trial hearing, Ms Knight took an overdose of barbiturates.

It was only after a psychiatric evaluation that it was decided she was fit to stand trial. She is being held on $1m (560,000) bail.



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