OJ didn’t do it

Tifany Chu, Opinion Editor

Recently, we celebrated the 20th anniversary of the infamous O.J. Simpson Murder Trial. In Oct 1995, the jury of the “Trial of the Century” acquitted Simpson of murdering his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her “friend” Ron Goldman. With the permission of Judge Lance Ito (the presiding judge), the media was allowed to broadcast the entire trial and this led to an unprecedented media frenzy. From your great grandma to the bro sitting next to you in Math, everyone knows about the case and most even have their own opinions about what really happened. In America, there is no double jeopardy, thus OJ can never be retrial for the crime and will forever remain INNOCENT (for the two deaths). Whether or not you agree with the verdict, the murders still remain unsolved. So the question is: If it wasn’t OJ, who did it?

This trial came to public attention again recently due to two critically acclaimed media adaptations released in 2016. One is a reenactment of the trial, The People v O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story (on Netflix) while the other is a documentary, O.J.: Made in America (on Hulu). These two series have unveiled the skeletons in the case’s closet and has presented a new view on the case.

Like most famous American events, the OJ case came with its own truck-load of conspiracy theories (one was even used by the defense in the trial). At the time, the police were so focused on locking down OJ that they did not even consider any other suspect. This was the fatal flaw (or stupidity) that has left the Double Homicide a cold case for the past 2 decades. In my opinion, if it definitely wasn’t OJ, there is a huge chance his son, Jason Simpson, did.

The first and most glaring reason it was Jason is simply because he has previously been diagnosed with psychotic tendencies and has a violent record to back it up. Since the verdict, private detective Bill Dear has devoted much time to proving that Jason is the killer and he presents his findings in the book OJ is Guilty but Not of Murder. In the book, Dear mentions that Jason’s medical records showed that despite his uncontrollable violent tendencies, he stopped taking his anti-psychotic medicine near the time of the murders. According to Jason’s record, he has had two instances of knife related violence. In one of these instances, he almost killed his ex-girlfriends with a knife. Jason is OJ’s 2nd child and oldest son from his first marriage to Marguerite Whitley. It is speculated that Jason has always had a weird obsession with his step-mom, Nicole. During the murders, Jason was 24 years old, meaning that he was fully capable of committing the heinous crime.

One of the biggest loopholes in the case against OJ was that despite the crime being an extremely violent one, (BESIDES THE CUT, YES I KNOW THE CUT) OJ was basically free from any physical bruises or even the slightest scuff. Keep in mind that one of the victims, Ron Goldman was a 3rd degree black belt in karate. If OJ was really trying to murder Ron, Ron would have definitely tried to defend himself. The autopsy of Ron’s body did reveal defensive bruising on his hands and arms, resulting from hitting someone. The many years OJ spent in the NFL had taken a huge toll on his body and at the time of the murders, OJ was suffering from many muscle/joint related problems. Granted, OJ was armed with a knife in hand, but I bet Ron still could have taken him. Due to the prosecution’s tunnel vision on OJ, they never checked in with Jason to see if he had suffered from any scars or bruises. So, who’s to say? If Jason was the killer, it is obvious that Ron would not have went all out in protecting himself because Jason is a known flight risk and Nicole’s child. Ron wouldn’t hurt a child but a big, stalkerish man with a knife? Sure!

I understand that the physical evidence is a very strong reason to pin OJ for the crime. At that time, DNA evidence was in its primitive stages and many did not believe in its reliability or accuracy. Only in the early 2000s did DNA evidence rise in popularity and usage in courts. Mark Fuhrman, the lead detective in the case and a documented racist, collected a lot of the evidence poorly and some even without a search warrant. Since Jason is OJ’s son they definitely share some similarities in their DNA. This is all circumstantial, but the evidence itself is also not trustable. Other physical evidence like the knit hat containing black hairs matching OJ would also have matched most African Americans.  Jason, however, was known to wear similar knit caps as the one found at the scene.

When questioned about the night of the murder, Jason claimed he was working at a restaurant in Beverly Hills. The police instantly found holes in his alibi. His co-workers claimed that the restaurant was having a slow night and Jason was allowed to leave early. His “exit” punch on his punch card for that night was handwritten, unlike the rest of his punches which were printed. His co-workers vouch that the punch machine was working fine that night and could not explain Jason’s alternative method of clocking out. It is evident that Jason is lying about his alibi and his whereabouts that night remain unknown.

This theory doesn’t claim that OJ is completely innocent, but rather, he just didn’t kill anyone. After the killings, OJ came to Nicole’s house shocked to see what Jason had just done and helped to Jason get away with it. That explains why OJ’s DNA was everywhere ( a little too obvious, in my opinion) and the stupid outbursts he had after (car chase and no guilty plea). There were many testimonies that claim that they saw OJ near the murder scene and some claim they saw him dispose of the evidence. Since this happened at night, I doubt the witnesses could clearly differentiate between OJ and Jason. Not only do they fit a similar description (tall, black, buff), they are literally father and son. The witnesses could have easily seen Jason and not OJ.

In 2008, OJ was found guilty of multiple felonies for his involvement in an armed robbery in Las Vegas. He was sentenced to 33 years in jail and in this coming October, he is up for parole. Many think he is stupid for getting away with murder and then doing petty crimes like this. However, after losing the wrongful death civil suit after the case, he owed the victims; families $33 million. OJ was left bankrupt, branded by the public as a murderer and jobless by this case. I think that this led him to want to go to prison to escape his hell of a life.

Even though this theory has a lot of holes in it, we will might never be able to find the full truth due to police incompetence 20 years ago. I believe that OJ knows much more about the case then he is letting up. Regardless of whether or not OJ performed the actual act of killing the two victims, it’s certain that he played at least a part in the murder and that’s very messed up. To learn more about this case I recommend watching the TV series and the documentary I mentioned above!!! You won’t regret it!