Edie Falco takes on the role of Leslie Abramson in ‘Law & Order True Crime: The Menendez Murders’. Learn more about the lawyer who defended Eric Menendez in one of the most important cases of our time.
1. She was Erik Menendez’s defense lawyer in their murder case
Leslie Abramson, 73, defended Erik Menendez (then 21) in his murder trial starting in 1993. She was a fierce and fiery lawyer who managed to convince jury members to find Erik not guilty of first-degree murder despite confessing to killing both of his parents with brother Lyle Menendez in 1989. That caused a mistrial, and the case went back to court in 1996. Though she fought tirelessly to defend Erik and intimidate the prosecution, Erik and Lyle were sentenced to life in prison without parole. She managed to save her client from the death penalty. She’s being portrayed in the new show Law & Order True Crime: The Menendez Murders by Edie Falco.
2. She was called a “fire-eating, mud-slinging, nuclear-strength pain in the legal butt.”
Add to that, “4-foot-11.” The Washington Post didn’t hold back when writing about the tenacious lawyer in 1996, calling her hair a “frizzy yellow mess,” and describing her a “fire-eating, mud-slinging, nuclear-strength pain in the legal butt.” They said that her “vintage, visceral eruption and wrath” was what kept viewers tuning into Court TV to see the trial unfold. Edie Falco said that Abramson’s tenacity was one of the reasons she wanted to play her on Law & Order True Crime.
3. She refuses to watch the show
Leslie isn’t happy that she’ll be depicted on Law & Order True Crime. The award-winning lawyer has stated that she refuses to watch the series. In fact, she ignored calls from the show’s researchers for insight into the trial. She reportedly hung up on reporters from The Wrap when they tried to talk to her about the show! “Oh boy.I have nothing to say. Absolutely nothing. Goodbye.” Damn! Before hanging up, she confirmed that she’s not watching the show.
4. She was twice named trial lawyer of the year by the L.A. Criminal Courts Bar Association
Leslie passed the bar in 1970 after earning her JD at UCLA. Her first job was at the Los Angeles County Public Defender’s office, where she developed a reputation as a tough fighter for her clients. That reputation earned her the L.A. Criminal Courts Bar Association’s award for trial lawyer of the year — twice.
5. She almost lost her license after the Menendez case
Abramson faced an inquiry by the state bar after it was revealed during the trial that she had Erik Menendez’s psychiatrist erase notes from their therapy sessions. She was ultimately found innocent of any wrongdoing.
Law & Order True Crime: The Menendez Murders premieres at 10:00pm on September 26 on NBC.
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