"The defense would devise “plot twists” and add them to their “narrative,” the plaintiff’s attorney warned. Experts would contribute facts and theories that would aid a pre-written “script.” And in the end, it would be the court’s job to “solve” the “mystery.”
This was no true-crime thriller, no episode of “Law & Order.” Rather, it was the first day of a trial involving that television show’s famous creator, the ranch that he owns and the liquid gold mine it sits atop.
“This case is about water,” the attorney, Carl Blumenstein, said in Santa Barbara Superior Court earlier this month. Dick Wolf’s Slippery Rock Ranch, Blumenstein continued, “seeks to take that water — water that belongs to the public — and sell it for private gain.”