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October 04, 1995 - Image 7

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1995-10-04

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Tina T-46'a '

The Michigan Daily - Wednesday, October 4, 1995 -7

Despte
LtS ANGELES (AP) - Was O.J.
Simpson wrongfully accused or did he
get away with murder? In spite of a
jury's acquittal yesterday, the question
is likely to haunt him for the rest of his
life; and he knows it.
Some may hail him as a victim ofthe
systm who overcame racism and po-
lice conspiracies to achievejustice. But
mnanyCwill see him as a rich man who
bought his way out of a heinous crime.
"Ican only hope that someday, despite
every prejudicial thing that has been said
about me publicly, both in and out ofthe
courtroom, people will come to under-
stand and believe that I would not, could
not and did not kill anyone," Simpson
said in a statement read by his son Jason.
But the question will persist: If Simpson
was.not the killer, who took a knife to the
throats of Nicole
Brown Simpson
and Ronald l don'
Goldman and for
what reason? no =t-g i
Simpson said he
would dedicate his here say
lietofindingthereal
culprits. But the WaS not
chances of success
seem simrn. mn The M
"T don't think a
not-guilty verdict still not
heresaysthat O.J. - L
was not the Loyola Univ
killer," said
Loyola University

acquittal, questions haunt Simpson

News Analysis
tions, jurors left open the crucial ques-
tion of whether they used the verdicts to
send a message.
"I think they looked at the evidence
and said, 'We don't trust the LAPD.
That's the message,"' said defense at-
torney Harland Braun, who was in the
courthouse as an observer.
Johnnie Cochran Jr., the lawyer who
led Simpson's "dream team" of attor-
neys to victory, credited the outcome to
"hard work" by his battery of high-
powered lawyers.
But the prosecution also worked hard,
mounting the most elaborate case ever
staged by District Attorney Gil

SIMPSON
Continued from Page 1
champagne party on the lawn O
Simpson's lush estate.
'Last June 13, '94, was the worst
nightmare of my life. This is the sec-
ond," Goldman's father, Fred, said at a
prosecution news conference. "This
prosecution team didn't lose today. I
deeply believe this country lost today.
Justice was not served."
At a defense team news conference,
Cochran insisted the issue ofrace, which
he played heavily in the trial, did not
overcome the facts.
"This verdict speaks justice,"
Cochran said. "This was a case based
upon the evidence."
He denied playing "the race card," say-
ing instead that credibility had won out.
"Race plays a part in everything in.
America," he said. "But this stuff about
playing a race card is preposterous.'
As the words setting Simpson free
were spoken in court, his elderly mother,
Eunice, seated in a wheelchair, wi-d
her eyes, held up her hands prayerfully
and murmured words of thanks.
"I was always in prayer. I knew my
son was innocent," she said at the de-
fense meeting with reporters.
Across the room, Goldman mouthed
the word "murderer" as the verdict was
announced. Kim Goldman, who spent
most of a year in court honoring her
dead brother's memory, doubled over
and sobbed along with a younger brother .
and sister.
At the courthouse, Simpson's son Ja-
son, read a statement from his father:
"My first obligation is to my young
children, who will be raised the way that
Nicole and I had always planned... But
when things have settled a bit, I will
pursue as my primary goal in life the killer
orkillers who slaughteredNicole and Mr.
Goldman. They are out there somewhere.
Whatever it takes to identify them 4nd
bring them in, I will provide somehow."

't think a
y verdict
rs that Om1
the killer,
ystery is
solved"
Laurie Levenson
ersity Law Prof.

Garcetti's office.
They threw their
hearts and souls
into their task as
evidenced by
Deputy District
Attorney Christo-
pher Darden's
breakdown as he
tried to discuss the
verdicts at a news
conference.
In performing
an autopsy on the
prosecution case,
analysts may find
that it was dead on

Earnest Simmons says a prayer for Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman at Simpson's former condominum yesterday.

Law-Professor Laurie Levenson. "It just
says you did not prove it beyondareason-
able doubt. The reasonable doubt stan-
dard is the basis of our system, and it
leaves a lot of gray area.... The mystery
still is not solved."
Police Chief Willie Williams said he
had no plans to reopen the investigation.
"Byrefusing to discuss their delibera-

arrival at the courthouse for reasons
that would not apply to any other mur-
der prosecution. Among them:
® O.J. Simpson was a black super-
star, a legendary athlete and the most
famous American ever charged with
murder. His arrest on charges of killing
his ex-wife and her friend was unthink-
able to many. The jury forewoman said

she felt sick when she heard he was a
suspect. Against such a man, the bur-
den of proof was much greater.
Simpson's dramatic ability to
dominate the trial without ever testify-
ing was underestimated. Darden's de-
cision to have him try on the bloody
murder gloves gave Simpson the chance
to approach jurors, struggle with the
gloves and demonstrate they were too
small for his hands.
M The prosecution tied itself to a
precise time line designed to eliminate
any possible alibi on Simpson's behalf.

For Simpson, life's
tral wllContinue
LOS ANGELES (AP) - No longer charged with murder,
no longer locked behind bars, O.J. Simpson now steps
forward to reclaim his life, his children and his livelihood.
None of it will be easy.
His acquittal notwithstanding, Simpson's legal battles are
far from over. He still faces three civil lawsuits, with no trial
dates in sight, over the deaths of ex-wife Nicole Brown
Sinpson and her friend Ronald Goldman.
Legal custody of his youngest children, Sydney; 9, and Justin,
7, rests with his former in-laws, Louis and Juditha Brown.
And his career as Mr. Nice Guy, the smiling, effusive NBC
sports commentator and the sprinting Hertz Corp. spokes-
man, is gone, at least for now.
"Hertz concluded its relationship with O.J. Simpson in
1994-and we do not foresee any change in that," company
spokesman Joe Russo said yesterday.
Simpson last worked for NBC in January 1994, and the
netwprk would not comment on whetherhe ever would again
or even disclose the status of his employment contract.
"We don't feel it is appropriate to make any comment at
this time," NBC spokesman Ed Markey said.
Al Ries, a New York marketing consultant, put Simpson's
advertising careermore bluntly: "Unlike baseball, where you
have three strikes before you are out, on Madison Avenue
you have one strike and you are out."
On the avenue of free enterprise, Simpson is doing just fine.
In the weeks before jurors reached their verdicts, Simpson
reportedly began planning apay-per-view interview in which
he would field questions from across the country. Such an
appearance is estimated to generate millions.
The Heisman Trophy winner and former professional
football star already has written one book, "I Want To Tell
You," and is said to be working on another.
His first, for which he was given a $1 million advance by

But jurors could have easily surmised
that it was impossible for Simpson to
drive to his ex-wife's home, kill two
people, return, clean up and dispose of a
weapon and bloody clothes in less than
one hour.
The re-reading of testimony by a lim-
ousine driver showed they were con-
cerned about the time element.
N The decision to use Detective Mark
Fuhrman as a key witness opened the
door to disaster.
The detective who claimed he found a
bloody glove on Simpson's property was
STUDENTS
Continued from Page 1
half of the class showed up," said one
political science teaching assistant. "I
thought that enough would show up that
we would be able to have a normal class."
"My Comm. 103 lecture got out 15
minutes early so we could all go back
and watch the verdict," said LSA sopho-
more Amir Aslani. "It relates to mass
media so that's why the prof let us go."
Simpson is beginning to find his way
into University studies as well: One
section of English 125 has been as-
signed essays based on the verdict.
Some students shared strong senti-
ments relating to the racial aspects of
the trial. "Had it been Joe Montana, you
wouldn't hear about it as much and it
wouldn't be on TV," said Engineering
junior Darius Hubbard.
Students' focus yesterday was so
overwhelmingly based on the details of
the verdict that not one person inter-
viewed mentioned the names of Nicole
Brown Simpson or Ronald Goldman.
The trial's cost, however, was the
subject of much speculation. "It's not
right that they only took four hours on
a case that lasted a year and cost like
$50 billion," said Engineering sopho-
more Damon Walker.
The case cost Los Angeles County an
estimated $9 million.
"For a not-guilty verdict, that was the
biggest waste of money in the whole
world," said LSA first-year student Sara
Littauer. "I feel sorry for the L.A. school
district for all the money it lost."
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unmasked as an undisputed racist late in
the case and was shown to have lied on the
witness stand about his use of an epithet
for blacks. He became the villain in a
morality play directed by Cochran, who
reduced the issues to good against evil.
He called Fuhrman and another detec-
tive, Philip Vannater, "the twin devils of
deception."
Of course, the ultimate answer to the
question of why the prosecution failed
would seem simple to the defense: O.J.
didn't do it. He may spend the rest ofhis
life trying to prove that.

P

v

I

Fred Goldman, father of victim Ronald Goldman, discusses
the verdict at a news conference yesterday.
publishers Little, Brown & Co., immediately topped The
New York Times best-seller list and has earned him at least
$3 million more.
In an upcoming Money magazine article, Simpson's post-
trial earning power is estimated at $10 million, including $2
million from a pay-per-view TV interview.
Behind bars, Simpson also signed 2,500 trading cards, for
which he was paid $200,000, and authorized the sale of 21-
inch bronze statues in his likeness, for which he received
$50,000 up front, according to Money.

EXPERTS
Continued from Page 1
more carefully, which would in turn
force police to "weed out people like
Fuhrman."
"If you use people who are as vi-
cious, untrustworthy and violent as that,
then we don't use this as a basis for
convicting someone," Gross said.
Along with race, Law Prof. Jerold

Israel noted the importance of forensic
evidence in the trial and its effects on
the legal system. The highly publicized
DNA testing and blood samples - con-
sidered strengths of the prosecution's
case - were not enough for a guilty
verdict, Israel said.
"Does the acquittal represent the
jury's rejection of forensic evidence?
Perhaps the jury saw other kinds of
evidence as more important than foren-

sic evidence," Israel said.
Israel stressed that there was a more
basic lesson to be learned about crimi-
nal trials.
"I would like (students) to learn one
thing: how complex this is - and you
can't keep up with it unless you watch
it every day," he said. "Even if you
watch it every day, you don't see every-
thing, because some things are
off-limits to the cameras.''

U

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