Celebrities | Pop Culture | 90s

The Truth About The "Trial Of The Century" That Hollywood Gets Wrong

- Page 1

In one of the biggest scandals of the '90s, O.J. Simpson went from hero, to zero, somehow back up to hero, all while being on trial for a double murder.

Now, the scandal wasn’t really the murder (even though that’s a big deal), but moreso the fact that Simpson walked away a free man, despite damning evidence against him.

Simpson started out as a football player, setting NCAA and NFL records with ease, and doing his best to inspire black youth across the country.

"I'm going to take the challenge of helping black kids in every way I can," he said. "I believe I can do as much for my own people in my own way as a Tommie Smith, a Jim Brown, or a Jackie Robinson may choose to do in another way. That's part of the image I want, too."

The image he ended up with, however, was historical for a different reason.

Marriage to Nicole Brown

In 1985, Simpson married Nicole Simpson, a small-town waitress. The couple seemed like the ideal match: a football superstar with the young, blonde bombshell. Together, they had two kids, Justin and Sydney. However, their marriage was far from perfect.

In 1989, O.J. Simpson plead no contest to spousal battery after he and his wife got in an argument at a New Year's Eve party. Nicole claimed O.J. threatened to kill her.

"We had a fight," O.J. Simpson said. "We were both guilty. No one was hurt. It was no big deal, and we got on with our life."

Three years later, Nicole Brown Simpson filed for divorce. Two years after that, she was found dead.

The Murders and The Chase

On June 12, 1994, Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend, Ronald Goldman, were found stabbed to death outside her home. All evidence pointed to O.J. Simpson as the killer, and a warrant for his arrest was issued. Simpson tried to flee, which led to one of the most iconic car chases of all time.

Simpson was in the back of a white Ford Bronco while ex-NFL player, Al Cowlings, drove. The pursuit was broadcast on live television, and is credited with being the "birth of reality television."

Simpson was found in possession of a gun, his passport, a disguise, and $9,000. However, he remained adamant that he was "absolutely, positively, 100 percent not guilty". That lie was just the beginning of what would be "The Trial Of The Century".

Simpson plead not guilty to both murders, and he was held without bail. A jury was compiled, which was difficult considering the amount of media coverage surrounding the case. The prosecution, lead by Marcia Clark, chose not to seek the death penalty for the murders, but rather a life sentence.

The Trial

The trial of O.J. Simpson was unlike anything the world had ever seen.

Cameras were allowed in the courtroom, and the public had full access through television broadcasting. People were glued to their TVs at all times.

The prosecution consisted of Deputy District Attorney Marcia Clark and Deputy District Attorney Christopher A. Darden.

Simpson hired a full team of high-profile lawyers, including F. Lee Bailey, Robert Kardashian, Robert Shapiro, Alan Dershowitz, Johnnie Cochran, Gerald Uelmen (then the dean of law at Santa Clara University), Carl E. Douglas and Shawn Holley.

Simpson's trial began on January 24, 1995, and was must-see reality television. Judge Ito was criticized for not doing enough the regulate the media allowed in the courtroom, and essentially turning it into a wild circus.

"When [it] began, all of the networks were getting these hate-mail letters because people’s soap operas were being interrupted for the Simpson trial," Marcia Clark later revealed "But then what happened was the people who liked soap operas got addicted to the Simpson trial. And they got really upset when the Simpson trial was over, and people would come up to me on the street and say, ‘God, I loved your show.’

TIME Magazine

During the trial, TIME magazine published a cover story titled "An American Tragedy", with a photo of O.J. Simpson on the cover. The publication faced extreme backlash when it was pointed out that editors had manipulated the photo of Simpson, making his skin appear darker as a way to make him seem more menacing. They were accused of racist editorializing, and later publicly apologized.

Things only got crazier as the trial got underway...

Page 1 Next Page

More Throwbacks


Brendan Fraser Opens Up About The Real Reason Behind His Disappearance From Hollywood

We all remember watching Brendan Fraser in the movies he made when we were kids. It all started with Encino Man, but our obsession with his movies would only grow and grow over the next few years. It seemed like he was in every movie, playing the hunky yet funny star of all the greatest action adventures and comedies from our younger years. But suddenly, his career seemed to get a little bit out of control. The quality of the movies wasn't up to snuff. There were no more hits like George of the Jungle or The Mummy, instead we


Your Zodiac Will Reveal Which 80s Celeb You're Most Like

Growing up in the 80s meant that you got to experience some of the greatest music, shows, and movies that have ever been made. Yes, obviously great stuff is still being made, but the 80s really was one-of-a-kind. The characters and celebrities of the 80s were really unique and awesome, and it's always been one of those things where you can't help but wonder which one your friends would compare you to. One way to try and figure out who you are most like is by judging by your zodiac sign. The zodiac is a fun way to look at


The 'Magnum P.I.' Reboot Has Found Its Star, And We're Actually Pretty Impressed

CBS is digging through its closet for old Hawaiian shirts as it prepares for a reboot of Magnum P.I., and we finally know who will play the famous detective in the new series.The network has already found success by remaking their classic TV shows like S.W.A.T., MacGyver, and Hawaii Five-O, and they're hoping one of the most popular shows of the '80s is ripe for a revival.Now, CBS has announced that actor Jay Hernandez will fill Tom Selleck's shoes as Thomas Magnum, the suave private eye from Oahu, Hawaii.But there are some modern