Winona Ryder’s day in court June 3 started poorly. That was before it got worse. Her lawyer Mark Geragos turned up at the hearing on the actress’s shoplifting and drug-possession case at 10:15 a.m. without Ryder—only to be sharply rebuked by Judge Elden Fox: “I want your client here, so call her.” Arriving 40 minutes later, Ryder, who has pleaded not guilty, sipped water as Kenneth Evans, manager of security at Beverly Hills’s Saks Fifth Avenue, told how she had caught his eye on the store’s surveillance cameras on Dec. 12 because she was carrying several large bags and wearing a long coat. Then things got weird at Los Angeles superior court: Returning from a lunch recess, Ryder, 30, passed through the media scrum outside the courthouse, got conked on the elbow by a TV camera and broke her right arm. Geragos says the damage was in the same place she had broken it last year while filming her upcoming comedy Mr. Deeds. “It was a little frightening,” he says, “but she was a trouper.”
Albeit a trouper in trouble. Ryder headed to a doctor for treatment, and Fox postponed proceedings until June 6. Ryder still faces up to three years and eight months in prison if Fox decides that prosecutors have enough evidence to try her for allegedly shoplifting almost $4,800 in merchandise and possessing the painkiller oxycodone without a prescription.
During his testimony, Evans—pointing to poster-size floor plans and grainy stills from a security video—described tracking Ryder for three hours from the sock department to the hat department (where she donned a beaded Eric Javits chapeau); through cosmetics and jewelry; up one escalator to the Donna Karan section; and up another escalator to Jil Sander and Gucci. Along the way, he said, she selected a number of items (see box). At one point, Evans said, he summoned a female security guard to watch Ryder through the slats of a fitting room door.
Finally, he said, Ryder walked out the door with at least some of the merchandise without visiting a cash register. Later, Geragos, who has said Ryder has some receipts, complained to PEOPLE that prosecutors “did everything they could to create a media circus.” But Fox, who ordered photographers to stay 10 feet from Ryder, vowed to keep order. “There won’t,” he said, “be a dog and pony show.”
Michael Fleeman in Los Angeles