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O. J. Simpson dies at age 76, household says

LAS VEGAS (AP) — O.J. Simpson, the soccer star and Hollywood actor acquitted of fees he killed his former spouse and her good friend in a trial that mesmerized the general public and uncovered divisions on race and policing in America, has died. He was 76.

The household introduced on Simpson’s official X account that he died Wednesday of prostate most cancers. He died in Las Vegas, officers there mentioned Thursday.

Simpson earned fame, fortune and adulation by way of soccer and present enterprise, however his legacy was eternally modified by the June 1994 knife slayings of his ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her good friend Ronald Goldman in Los Angeles. He was later discovered chargeable for the deaths in a separate civil case, after which served 9 years in jail on unrelated fees.

Goldman’s father, Fred, and his sister, Kim, launched an announcement acknowledging that “the hope for true accountability has ended.”


“The information of Ron’s killer passing away is a blended bag of sophisticated feelings and reminds us that the journey by way of grief isn’t linear,” they wrote.

Reside TV protection of Simpson’s arrest after a well-known slow-speed chase marked a surprising fall from grace.

He had appeared to transcend racial limitations because the star Trojans tailback for faculty soccer’s highly effective College of Southern California within the late Sixties, as a rental-car advert pitchman dashing by way of airports within the late Seventies, and because the husband of a blond and blue-eyed highschool homecoming queen within the Eighties.

“I’m not Black, I’m O.J.,” he preferred to inform pals.

His trial captured America’s consideration on dwell TV. The case sparked debates on race, gender, home abuse, superstar justice and police misconduct.

Proof discovered on the scene appeared overwhelmingly towards Simpson. Blood drops, bloody footprints and a glove had been there. One other glove, smeared with blood, was discovered at his dwelling.

Simpson didn’t testify, however the prosecution requested him to strive on the gloves in court docket. He struggled to squeeze them onto his palms and spoke his solely three phrases of the trial: “They’re too small.”

His lawyer Johnnie L. Cochran Jr. informed the jurors, “If it doesn’t match, you have to acquit.”

O. J. Simpson has died on the age of 76.

The jury discovered him not responsible of homicide in 1995, however a separate civil trial jury discovered him liable in 1997 for the deaths and ordered him to pay $33.5 million to family of Brown and Goldman.

A decade later, nonetheless shadowed by the California wrongful demise judgment, Simpson led 5 males he barely knew right into a confrontation with two sports activities memorabilia sellers in a cramped Las Vegas resort room. Two males with Simpson had weapons. A jury convicted Simpson of armed theft and different felonies.

Imprisoned at 61, he served 9 years in a distant Nevada jail, together with a stint as a fitness center janitor. He wasn’t contrite when he launched on parole in October 2017. The parole board heard him insist but once more that he was solely attempting to retrieve memorabilia and heirlooms stolen from him after his Los Angeles legal trial.

“I’ve mainly spent a conflict-free life, ,” mentioned Simpson, whose parole led to late 2021.

Public fascination with Simpson by no means pale. Many debated whether or not he had been punished in Las Vegas for his acquittal in Los Angeles. In 2016, he was the topic of an FX miniseries and a five-part ESPN documentary.

“I don’t assume most of America believes I did it,” Simpson informed The New York Occasions in 1995, every week after a jury decided he didn’t kill Brown and Goldman. “I’ve gotten hundreds of letters and telegrams from individuals supporting me.”

Twelve years later, following an outpouring of public outrage, Rupert Murdoch canceled a deliberate guide by the Information Corp.-owned HarperCollins by which Simpson supplied his hypothetical account of the killings. It was to be titled “If I Did It.”

Goldman’s household, nonetheless doggedly pursuing the multimillion-dollar wrongful demise judgment, received management of the manuscript. They retitled the guide “If I Did It: Confessions of the Killer.”

“It’s all blood cash, and sadly I needed to be a part of the jackals,” Simpson informed The Related Press on the time. He collected $880,000 prematurely cash for the guide, paid by way of a 3rd occasion.

“It helped me get out of debt and safe my homestead,” he mentioned.

Lower than two months after shedding rights to the guide, Simpson was arrested in Las Vegas.

Simpson performed 11 NFL seasons, 9 of them with the Buffalo Payments, the place he turned generally known as “The Juice” and ran behind an offensive line generally known as “The Electrical Firm.” He received 4 NFL dashing titles, rushed for 11,236 yards in his profession, scored 76 touchdowns and performed in 5 Professional Bowls. His greatest season was 1973, when he ran for two,003 yards — the primary operating again to interrupt the two,000-yard dashing mark.

“I used to be a part of the historical past of the sport,” he mentioned years later. “If I did nothing else in my life, I’d made my mark.”

Simpson’s soccer rise occurred concurrently with a tv profession. He signed a contract with ABC Sports activities the night time he received the Heisman Trophy in 1968. That very same yr, he appeared on the NBC collection “Dragnet” and “Ironside.” Throughout his professional profession, Simpson was a shade commentator for a decade on ABC adopted by a stint on NBC. In 1983, he joined ABC’s “Monday Night time Soccer.”

Simpson turned a charismatic pitchman. In 1975, Hertz made him the primary Black man employed for a company nationwide advert marketing campaign. The commercials, that includes Simpson operating by way of airports towards the Hertz desk and younger women chanting “Go, O.J., go!” had been ubiquitous.

Simpson made his big-screen debut in 1974′s “The Klansman,” an exploitation movie by which he starred alongside Lee Marvin and Richard Burton. The movie flopped, however Simpson would go on to seem in a number of dozen movies and TV collection, together with 1974′s “The Towering Inferno,” 1976′s “The Cassandra Crossing,” 1977′s “Roots” and 1977′s “Capricorn One.”

Most notable, maybe, was 1988′s “The Bare Gun: From the Information of Police Squad” and two sequels. Simpson performed Detective Nordberg within the slapstick movies, reverse Leslie Nielsen.

In fact, Simpson went on to different fame.

One of many artifacts of his homicide trial, the tailor-made tan go well with he wore when acquitted, was donated and displayed on the Newseum in Washington. Simpson had been informed the go well with could be within the resort room in Las Vegas, however it wasn’t there.

Orenthal James Simpson was born July 9, 1947, in San Francisco, the place he grew up in government-subsidized housing.

After graduating from highschool, he enrolled at Metropolis School of San Francisco for a yr and a half earlier than transferring to the College of Southern California for the spring 1967 semester.

He married his first spouse, Marguerite Whitley, on June 24, 1967, shifting her to Los Angeles the subsequent day so he may start making ready for his first season with USC — which, largely due to Simpson, received that yr’s nationwide championship.

On the day he accepted the Heisman Trophy, his first little one, Arnelle, was born.

He had two sons, Jason and Aaren, along with his first spouse; a type of boys, Aaren, drowned as a toddler in a swimming pool accident in 1979, the identical yr he and Whitley divorced.

Simpson and Brown had been married in 1985. They’d two kids, Justin and Sydney, and divorced in 1992. Two years later, Nicole Brown Simpson was discovered lifeless.

“We don’t want to return and relive the worst day of our lives,” he informed the AP 25 years after the double slayings. “The topic of the second is the topic I’ll by no means revisit once more. My household and I’ve moved on to what we name the ‘no destructive zone.’ We give attention to the positives.”


Biographical materials on this story was written by former AP Particular Correspondent Linda Deutsch.

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