“Trial of the Century” (O.J. Simpson Double Murder Trial)
The 1995 O.J. Simpson murder trial was one of the most famous
and notorious in American history. The 252-day trial was shown daily on
national television and garnered the following of countless onlookers,
as well as millions around the world. Former NFL player, broadcaster,
and actor O.J. Simpson was tried on two counts of murder for the June
12, 1994, slashing deaths of his ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her
friend Ron Goldman. The arrest and trial were among the most widely
publicized events in American history. The trial—often characterized as
the “trial of the century” because of its international
publicity—spanned eleven months, until the verdict was announced on
October 3, 1995, when Simpson was acquitted on two counts of murder.
Following his acquittal, no additional arrests related to the murders
have been made, and the crime remains unsolved to this day. Simpson was
represented by a very high-profile criminal defense team, also referred
to as the “Dream Team.” The team was initially led by Robert Shapiro,
and subsequently directed by Johnnie Cochran; the team included some of
the most notable criminal attorneys in America – F. Lee Bailey, Alan
Dershowitz, Gerald Uelmmen, Barry Scheck and Peter Neufield. The work of
these highly trained lawyers, in large part, helped O.J. Simpson secure
an acquittal in the high profile case.
What to do:
Step 1: First,
carefully review Chapter 3 and focus on the six arguments that can be
employed to defend against a criminal indictment. Next, review credible
Web-based articles regarding the O.J. Simpson trial, focusing your
attention on the criminal defense presented by O.J.’s “Dream Team.”
Step 2: Answer each of the following questions (Minimum 300 words total. Include a word count):
- What were the primary criminal defenses used by the “Dream Team” to defend O.J. Simpson? – (Hint: There were two)
- Why do you think these criminal defenses were successful in securing an acquittal for O.J. in the criminal case?
BE SURE TO PROVIDE RESEARCH TO SUPPORT
YOUR POSITION. It is important that you refer to specific legal
principles found in the criminal defense as a part of your analysis.
Make sure to clearly explain your legal defense (i.e., background,
rules, exceptions, etc.). Properly cite your literary sources.