Nabil Arnaout Eng 111/ Enf 09 March 18, 2013 Trial of the Century To this day, OJ Simpson’s famous murder trial, “The People vs. OJ Simpson”, remains one of the most publicized and famous murder trials in recent history. It attracted the attention of every major news network, and caused quite a stir in the daily lives of Los Angeles, if not all American lifestyles. The infamous car chase was such an important incident that many news networks dropped coverage of the 1994 NBA Finals, which was happening at the same time, to show the chase in all its glory.
The combination of the high profile murders, publicity, and the “dream team” of Johnnie Cochran and Robert Kardashian have cemented the OJ Simpson case in the minds of many Americans. After the murders, when attorney Robert Shapiro informed Simpson that he needed to turn himself over to the police, Simpson failed to show. Shortly afterwards, his white Ford Bronco was spotted and the police began pursuit (Linder 8). It would be one of the most famous car chases in American history.
Claiming a hostage situation in the car, he led them on a 35 mile an hour chase, which, as mentioned before, disrupted many of the local news channels’ broadcasts as they switched to the chase. He was allowed to go home and talk to his mother before he was arrested for the murders of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goodman. The case would take many twists and turns, with plenty of evidence being twisted, and in some cases not accepted at all.
It started in 1995, but as of 2008, some evidence was still in dispute. The glove, found by officer Mark Fuhrman, had both victims’ blood on it, but was rejected because it apparently was “too small” for Simpson’s hand to fit, prompting Johnnie Cochran’s infamous line, “If it don’t fit, you must acquit! “(Baley 6) In the Ford Bronco, the blood of both victims was also found on the center console, and it came to light that the knife (murder weapon) was purchased by OJ a few weeks earlier.
This evidence was also not accepted in court because the person who sold OJ the knife had sold his story to a tabloid magazine, which deemed it unacceptable to court. Although the murder was committed in Santa Monica, due to the extreme public attention to the case and the media craze attached to it, they moved the trial to downtown Los Angeles, and was presided there by Judge Lance Ito. The duration of the trial (almost 8 months), made many of the participants of the case into TV celebrities.
After numerous attempts to prove Simpson’s innocence, Cochran and Kardashian (the Dream Team, as the media called them), called Simpson’s mother and daughter to the stand. After a tearful display where they lauded Simpson’s good nature and pleasant qualities, the jury began to sway towards Simpson, even though it was already proven that the relationship between Simpson and his ex-wife had been abusive. (Sherwell 9) After an 8 month trial, the verdict of the trial finally was published: “Not Guilty”.
Some say the building racial tensions resulting from the case affected the verdict (political reasons), while others maintain that the jury had been bribed or swayed with improper evidence. Simpson walked out. Some also believe the Simpson’s son was involved in the murders. Jason Simpson had an even worse background than his father when it came to domestic abuse. Numerous accounts of psychotic tendencies and physical violence brought Jason to light as a possible suspect. Add to that that he was a chef and always had a knife in arm’s reach. (Truman 20)
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