October 4, 2008

So, finally, O.J. Simpson will go to prison.

Convicted of armed robbery and kidnapping:
The jury of nine women and three men deliberated for 13 hours, mulling weeks of testimony as well as hours of surreptitious audio recordings of the planning and execution of the event by Thomas Riccio, a memorabilia auctioneer who arranged the confrontation.

There were no blacks among the jurors, a concern of the defense that Mr. Simpson’s attorneys said would likely be part of an appeal. Eight of 12 jurors were black when he was acquitted in 1995 on charges that he stabbed to death his ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend, Ronald Goldman....

“We don’t want people going into rooms to take property,” Mr. Roger said in his closing arguments on Thursday. “That is robbery. You don’t go in and get a gun and demand property from people.”

Four of the 24 witnesses who testified were the other men who had accompanied Mr. Simpson and Mr. Stewart, all of whom have accepted plea deals from prosecutors in exchange for testimony. Two of them, Walter Alexander and Michael McClinton, carried guns in the incident, and one, Mr. McClinton, testified that he did so at Mr. Simpson’s request.

Mr. Simpson said he did not know that the two would carry weapons and never saw any guns displayed during the incident....

[Simpson's lawyer Yale] Galanter attacked that issue in his closing, noting that Mr. Riccio’s recorder had picked up police officers at the crime scene seeming to exult in their chance to prosecute Mr. Simpson. He also noted that Mr. Riccio alone testified that he had made more than $200,000 in fees from the news media in exchange for interviews and rights to his recordings.

“This case has never been about a search for the true facts,” Mr. Galanter said. “This case has taken on a life of its own because Mr. Simpson’s involved. You know that, I know that, every cooperator, every person with a gun, every person who signed a book deal, every person who got paid money, the police, the district attorney’s office, was only interested in one thing: Mr. Simpson.”

Did O.J. Simpson get a fair trial?
Yes! He committed robbery and kidnapping.
Yes! He's a murderer.
No. Those old murders infected this trial.
Let the appellate court determine if there were errors.
pollcode.com free polls

42 comments:

TexasPatrick said...

Dang. This is SOOOOOO going to put a damper on his search for Nicole's killer . . . . maybe he can give Al Cowlings a call . .

D said...

Justice delayed, but still justice.

Palladian said...

"There were no blacks among the jurors, a concern of the defense that Mr. Simpson’s attorneys said would likely be part of an appeal."

Is that legitimate grounds for granting an appeal?

William said...

Simpson is guilty although probably not of this crime. I feel, though not strongly, that this sets a wrong precedent....It is possible that Simpson's murder acquittal had more to do with his celebrity than with his race. Blake, the Raven's linebacker, Spector and others have all dodged conviction. Perhaps in the future celebrities should be judged by a jury empanelled in Beverly Hills among public spirited fellow celebrities and/or athletes.

kimsch said...

To continue palladian's thought: Doesn't the defense have equal chances in jury selection for exclusions, etc, as the prosecution? Might the defense have something to do with the fact that there were no blacks on the jury?

former law student said...

I thought OJ was recovering his own property, which would negate one element of robbery.

Electric Citizen said...

It is disappointing to see the use here and at Instapundit and elsewhere of the "free polls."

They have no validity whatsoever as their samples are self-selected and not randomized.

The gains they may achieve in boosting viewership will be offset by loss in credibility.

Pogo said...

"They have no validity whatsoever as their samples are self-selected and not randomized. "

Who said they were randomized polls?
Not "valid" by what criteria?

former law student said...

Might the defense have something to do with the fact that there were no blacks on the jury?

The first question is whether the jury pool represented a cross-section of the community. You're unlikely to get many black folks in Yreka, for example. Making sure this happens is the responsibility of the Jury Commissioner's office, and ultimately the court itself, to make sure for example, that people cannot duck out of serving.

The defense could challenge black potential black jurors for cause, or use up peremptory challenges on them, but I don't see why they would do it here.

Maguro said...

This will definitely impair OJ's search for the real killers.

TMink said...

I believe that OJ should have been in prison a long time ago, but learning of his conviction still sadened me. I remember when I was a boy and thought he was cool and to be admired.

I believe this is justice, but it hurts in a strange way to think of how his life was wasted and to wonder what supported and facilitated OJ in being such a miserable excuse for a moral person.

Trey

Preston said...

Can anyone point me to an credible source for O. J.'s son Jason's alibi for the time of the murder?

former law student said...

Is that legitimate grounds for granting an appeal?

Maybe. If no blacks are ever called for jury duty in Clark County Nevada, Simpson's Sixth Amendment rights would be violated. If they're called but don't show up, and the court makes no effort to get them to show up, Simpson's 6th Amendment rights would also be violated.

If on the other hand, blacks participate in the jury pool proportional to their presence in the population, but there weren't any in Simpson's jury pool by random chance, his 6th Am rights would not have been violated.

John Burgess said...

FLS: Prior civil court decisions essentially stripped OJ of his ownership rights to nearly all of his memorabilia. They belong (as does nearly all other property once owned by OJ) to the family of the young man killed at the same time as Nichole Brown.

I seem to recall that OJ lost even the right to promote himself by his own name. Any money earned in endorsements, for example, must go to the Goldman family.

It is only through the grace of Florida bankruptcy law that he retained ownership of his multi-million dollar house there.

So, legally, OJ did not own the property he sought to 'reclaim'. It no longer belonged to him and he had no right under law to seek its return. The Goldmans had the legal claim to ownership.

Regardless of this, however, even if the property was legally his, he still had no right to engage in kidnapping, assault with a deadly weapon, etc.

Trooper York said...

If Mort were awake he would say it was racist.

Glen said...

Electric Citizen said:
It is disappointing to see the use ... of the "free polls." They have no validity whatsoever as their samples are self-selected and not randomized.

You're projecting. Who ever said these "free polls" reflect the opinions of some public at large?

I've never thought the polls here tally anything other than the response of Althouse readers to Ann's questions.

They're meant to be fun. They provide an additional layer of interactivity between the blog and it's community.

The playful composition and punctuation of the questions should have been your first clue.

ElcubanitoKC said...

Why is it always about race with him?

When the "balsero" murderer of Jimmy Rice was convicted to die on the electric chair in FL, NO ONE in Miami said it was because he was Cuban. Why does this have to be any different?

Trooper York said...

If Mort were awake he would say that is a racist question.

Peter V. Bella said...

I thought OJ was recovering his own property, which would negate one element of robbery.

Normally one calls the police to recover alleged stolen or disputed property.

Charlie Eklund said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Charlie Eklund said...

A headline I never thought I'd see:

O.J. Guilty!
This Time, Jury Thinks So Too

D said...

"O.J. Guilty!
This Time, Jury Thinks So Too"

Eh, the jury knew he was guilty back then. They just decided to stick it to "the man" by finding not-guilty.

It's just the way it goes sometimes.

Roger J. said...

With any luck this sorry excuse for a human being will die in prison. Good riddance.

The Drill SGT said...

former law student said...
I thought OJ was recovering his own property, which would negate one element of robbery.


A couple of points from a non-lawyer.

1. one normally goes to the police or civil court to recover property
2. I think it would be robbery if the victim believes the property to be his, regardless of the ultimate status of the contested item.
3. OJ was found guilty of perhaps 12 different offenses here, 6 conspiracy as I recall. 2 burglary will armed, 2 robbery while armed and 2 kidnapping while armed counts. So regardless of the ultimate owner of the items (OJ, victim, The Browns) it would seem 6 charges would survive some of them being each of the 15-life variety.

so piddling around the edges of this concerning the ultimate owner seems pointless. What convicted him was audio, video, 24 witnesses including 4 accomplices.

The Drill SGT said...

I looked at the Clark county census.

10.4% black so:
1. depending on how the jury pool is gathered (e.g. registered voters, tax rolls, etc)
2. depending on how many blacks show up
3. depnding on how many were in the random draw for the trial
4. depending on how many were challenged off

it would seem to generate a number from 0-1 blacks on the average jury

The Drill SGT said...

D said...
Eh, the jury knew he was guilty back then. They just decided to stick it to "the man" by finding not-guilty.


the great news is that nobody else got hurt by OJ in the intervening 13 years.

rhhardin said...

Stealing what isn't his'n.

former law student said...

Normally one calls the police to recover alleged stolen or disputed property.

Self-help is still allowed; my dad worked as a repo man for a while. Further, in my experience the police are useless when it comes to property crimes -- all that they do is fill out a report that you can take to your insurance man.

My favorite was when my friend was carjacked. The Chicago police festooned the abandoned car with parking tickets; and finally my friend had to recover it from the impound lot.

ElcubanitoKC said...

But, did your dad break into those places with a gun? Or did he just serve the people with repo orders?

The Drill SGT said...

ElcubanitoKC said...
But, did your dad break into those places with a gun? Or did he just serve the people with repo orders?


The lesson being, be very very certain you have the right house, etc....

Cedarford said...

I am leery of prosecutorial "overcharging". It undermines respect for that law and the intent of legislators when they crafted legislation on charges like kidnapping, "assault with the intent to murder", conspiracy, and "reckless endangerment".

It is generally a way for the State to cow defendents and force them to plea to lesser charges.

Appeal a speeding ticket or ask for a trial and watch as charges "magically" add to the original "going over 30" to reckless endangerment and other minor felonies or charges that will result in a loss of a driver's licence.

Same game is now played with armed robbery, muggings, rape - the penalties and charges on the books are not enough - so prosecutors have started adding "kidnapping" as implicit in anyone "held against their will, made to do things against their will". Not what lawmakers intended when they wanted to eradicate the incentive to steal a baby or kidnap and hold the kid of a well-off member of society for ransome. The abusive prosecutor in the Duke Lacrosse case made "kinapping" his big charge and asserted any rape accusation is also a kidnapping case...

Just as I thought OJ was guilty of the Brentwood murders, I think that in no way was Simpson guilty of anymore than taking back his stuff from fellow scumbags. Thieves who also had no intent of paying a cent to Goldman.

Cops and insurance tends to protect the wealthy and "above-board" members of society only. A large part of America follows a different code - they aren't insured against property losses - the cops don't help them recover stolen property or they can't go to the cops - so the "code" permits strongarm repo.

If it wasn't for OJ's celebrity and the fact a convict dirtball was recording it for the purpose of entrapment and helping his ass out of other criminal charges? No way would cops or prosecutors touch a case of some scumbag getting back a few thousand bucks worth of personal property from fellow scumbags. No way.

blake said...

I believe this is justice, but it hurts in a strange way to think of how his life was wasted and to wonder what supported and facilitated OJ in being such a miserable excuse for a moral person.

Drugs. Lots and lots of drugs.

vbspurs said...

Note to wifebeaters who were acquitted of the felony of double homicide by the skin of your teeth:

STAY AWAY FROM GUNS, THUGS, AND VIGILANTISM.

(God, is he dumb or what? He lives a few miles away from I do, and anytime he is stopped in a red light, inside his CONVERTIBLE, he mugs to the other passengers, waves, fist-pumps. In short, he loves the limelight and takes every opportunity to wrestle it back)

Cheers,
Victoria

ElcubanitoKC said...

Do I see a Cedarford post that doesn't blame the jews for anything??? Not even Goldman??

This is a first! I will drink to this!

ElcubanitoKC said...

the drill sgt said...
[...]

The lesson being, be very very certain you have the right house, etc....

1:20 PM


Unless you are a member of a SWAT team on a drug raid...oh, wait, never mind...

Peter V. Bella said...

FLS,
OJ knew where the property was. He could have had the police meet him there, prove his actual ownership, and they could have handled it. The property was on site- not just out in the wind someplace; it was in their posession.

Instead, he hires armed goons to take back what he considered his stuff. That is not a repo. A repo man has to have some kind of legal paperwork to do his job- in Illinois he needs a court order.

blake said...

If he'd done it legit, the police would've had to turn over the stuff to the Goldman's. Hence the need for hanky-panky.

J said...

""There were no blacks among the jurors, a concern of the defense that Mr. Simpson’s attorneys said would likely be part of an appeal."

Is that legitimate grounds for granting an appeal?"

One of the things I learned from the last OJ trial was that it's racist to suggest that the race of the jurors had anything to do with the verdict. Is that still true?

Meade said...

In defense of the killer...

Somehow, Simpson had been wrongly led into believing that crime can, in fact, sort of pay and, it turns out, that it IS possible to get away with murder.

I'm convinced Simpson never would have gotten involved in this recent crime if only he had been fully informed of the fact that he would not get away with it.

carosmama said...

OJ is only BWC, Black when convenient. His longtime girlfriend bears an extremely creepy resemblance to the late Nicole.

rcocean said...

This proves the system works. Sure, you can hack 2 people to death with a blood trail that leads directly to your house, and still get off because your race. But justice will prevail. As long as you commit another robbery/kidnapping 12 years later, you will punished.

No need for legal reform, America is No. 1!

Revenant said...

Did O.J. Simpson get a fair trial?

I can't bring myself to care.