Bye-Bye O.J. Simpson

by Diane Dimond on December 13, 2008

O.J. is Sorry ... too late

O.J. is sorry ... too late

For all the words spoken at the sentencing of convicted felon, O.J. Simpson, I find most interesting what wasn’t said.

The courtroom was rapt as District Court Judge Jackie Glass ran through a long list of the nearly dozen robbery and kidnapping based felonies Simpson was charged with and his punishment for each charge. It totaled up to 33 years in prison for the former football and movie star. Simpson won’t be eligible for parole until he serves at least 9 years.

But no one in court said that it is highly unlikely he’ll get parole his first time out, hardly anyone does. So, it is very likely 61 year old Orenthal James Simpson will stay in prison well after he turns 70 years old. The sentence passed by Judge Glass that day in Las Vegas could turn out to amount to life in prison for O.J. Simpson. No one mentioned he could very well die behind bars.

Also not mentioned in court the other day was that ever since O.J.’s acquittal on double murder charges 13 years ago he has resided in a certain type of prison anyway. A Los Angeles jury may have absolved him of the brutal slayings of his ex-wife, Nicole, and her friend Ron Goldman but the bigger jury – the one that resides in the court of public opinion – did not.

At every country club and golf tournament, at every fancy dinner and social event he has attended some one was whispering, “Murderer!” or, “He got away with murder!” He has been roundly shunned and sneered at all these years. No telling how his children with Nicole regarded him after their mother was gone but we do know neither daughter, Sidney, nor son, Justin, was in court as their father heard his fate.

And in the Las Vegas courtroom there was no mention of race, no black vs. white, cops vs. the man of color. That card was played over and over again during the 1995 murder trial. Back then many black community leaders and scholars were vocal in insisting that “the system” railroaded men like O.J. Simpson, they expressed doubt that he would get a fair trial. They rarely mentioned the issue of his true innocence or guilt.

This time around they didn’t get involved at all. There were no black clergymen like Jesse Jackson in attendance to speak out about the injustice of it all, no threat of massive demonstrations or riots should Simpson be found guilty. And, this time there were no courthouse pronouncements about “the system” that exonerated O.J. in 1995.

I say with no sympathy at all for Mr. Simpson that this time around few people were really passionate about his plight. He’d had too many plights over the last 13 years. Even his most ardent supporters grew weary of his self-made problems with the law: a 911 domestic abuse call to police from his daughter, Sidney; another 911 domestic abuse call for help from his long time girlfriend; a road rage incident in which O.J. was blamed for roughing up another driver; the theft of services charge filed by a cable company after Simpson was found to be stealing TV signals. Then there was that awful book he put his name to in which he very nearly confessed to the double homicide.

The list of disgusting antics became too long and when his adoring friends and fans fell away the former Hall of Fame star took up with a group of hangers-on and thugs. He surrounded himself with goons with guns like those who followed him into that Las Vegas hotel room demanding memorabilia dealers turn over their wares.

Did the not guilty murder verdict make Simpson arrogant enough to think he was untouchable, that he had a free pass for the rest of his life? Did he think the public bought his post verdict declaration that he would dedicate himself to “finding the real killer?” Or did he see the disdain in people’s eyes?

“Every where I go folks ask me for my autograph. It happens all the time,” I heard him say on TV a few years ago. But there was sadness in his eyes as he spoke, as if attention from strangers was all he had left in life.

Simpson didn’t mention the autograph seekers the other day as he stood before Judge Glass and begged with red-rimmed eyes for mercy, explaining it all away as “being stupid, not criminal.” He looked profoundly sad and tired and gray.

I wonder what he says to himself at night in his cell? Does he still cling to the notion that “the system” did him in? Or is he thinking about karma and how it nearly always comes back to bite you.


{ 21 comments… read them below or add one }

marc December 13, 2008 at 8:13 am

all these famous people getting in trouble by being stupid. it amazes me that they have such egos to think they can get away with anything. don't they have any friends to tell them no ?


Lyn December 13, 2008 at 10:09 am

Hey Diane…great post. Yeh, the famous getting away with it….he said at the end of his trial that he did not know he was doing anything illegal. Choke…..gulp….whew! Oblivious to the facts because he is famous and he thought he would be let off scott free – again!! After the first trial (and yes we all agree he got away with it) he should have been taught a lesson but no…..he makes me want to vomit. He is a disgusting man and deserves to rot in jail but;s us, the taxpayers that are paying for his keep!! God…sometimes I wonder if there is ever any justice in this world…well he won;t be making any mistakes again, not for a very long time.


DianeDimond December 13, 2008 at 9:36 pm

IntenseDebate Notification <DIV dir=ltr align=left>approve</DIV>


jeff liddell December 14, 2008 at 6:34 am

I always enjoy your posts as well. You mention the court of public opinion, and it is unfortunate that those with wealth, means and influence (directly or indirectly) could care less about public opinion. Simpson, Phil Spector, Robert Blake all are perfect examples, they received their favorable verdicts and moved on with their lives, suffering only from seclusion. I will be very curious about Spector's re trial outcome and at least Blake had enough sense to go low profile after his verdict. Mr. Simpson thought his sports celebrity and personality would overcome the bad publicity and for 13 years that was accomplished.
That is why his ego would not let him accept that sweet plea deal he was offered by the state of Nevada.

Although I understand why Judge Glass mentioned the previous trial during her sentencing, it was not pertinent to these proceedings and she should not have had to mention the subject. I hope that Mr. Simpson does have to suffer for his arrogance and his crimes , but we all know that as long as his autograph is worth anything, he will be able to gain favors from other inmates and guards at his new home, so again his celebrity will help ease the pain.


jeff liddell December 15, 2008 at 1:24 am

this remark has nothing to do with O J or crime, but it is that time of year and I like to share my thoughts with others at Christmas. If this offends any readers I offer my apologies now.

My youth has been removed many times over. As children my parents were not very wealthy and they could not afford to make a materialistic holiday for all six of us kids. They did their best to put a little something under the tree for all of us, but for the better part of my life through my teenage years, Christmas was family, friends, great food and sharing the love for all of those. As I got older and could afford to puchasce gifts I have always tried to remember the true meaning of Christmas to me and my family, it will have an even greater meaning in the midst of our economic downturn. So Merry Christmas to all of Diane's readers and to all a very happy and healthy New Year.


DianeDimond December 16, 2008 at 1:13 am

Jeff! What a wonderful comment. Thanks so much. I soooo agree with you. Over the years we&#039;ve somehow lost the true meaning of Christmas. I know to some that will sound trite but I mean it, sincerely. My husband and I wrote to everyone on our usual gift list this year and said in view of the economy we would accept no gifts – and give no gifts – except to the small children in the family. I do not need another book to read, or another do-dad to dust or a bottle of something to drink. We suggested to everyone that they, like us, write some checks to charity. It seems the humane thing to do this year. THEN, maybe we get back to that true meaning.

Happy and Merry season to all! Diane


Joseph I.Salinas December 15, 2008 at 4:57 am

Dear Diane,
This will be short and sweet. OJ should have been convicted for murder in California.
Thanks to white citizens who failed to respond to their Civic Duty, they let a black jury
decide his fate and he was found "not guilty". He was not found to be "innocent", just
not guilty. Thanks also to "perjurious" cops, the race card became an issue and the
verdict then became a predictable conclusion. I hope we all learn from this travesty, and
in the future we will do our duty and and be part of a just jury. Thanks Nevada.
Joseph, A faithful Albuquerque Journal reader.


Adrian McManus December 15, 2008 at 7:22 am

I love to read your stories dd. I bet Nicole and Ron are at peace now. Finally the squirrel was caught!!!!!!! He is lucky no one took him out and killed him yet ! Maybe Big Bubba will give him what he really needs!!


Henry Hunnewell December 15, 2008 at 11:15 am

I can't believe they could charge O. J. Simpson for so many crimes for one crime.
Has any bank robber ever been charged for kidnapping? It seems to me they
charged him for all these crimes because they think that he got away with murder
in the past. I thought they couldn't take his first trial into account. I am not defending the man, but just asking if anyone has ever been charged for kidnapping for a hold up.


Peter Douglas December 15, 2008 at 11:17 am

I'm more sympathetic this time. OJ got 33 years and his "gun man" got probation. Justice is suppose to be equal. If it was wouldn't have his goons gone down hard too?


DianeDimond December 16, 2008 at 1:16 am

From Web site reader Anne in Los Angeles:

I very much enjoyed your piece, and I do very much believe in karma!

Weird, O. J. (with Nicole) was my first celebrity sighting when I had just started at UCLA. Near where I worked in Brentwood, there was a shoe store specializing in Charles Jourdan, the Manolo of his time. One day, as I had my 18-year-old nose pressed against the glass, O. J. came out carrying a tower of boxes, which he dumped into a white Bentley convertible. I remember Nicole as being about my age and looking very much like Michelle Pfeiffer. I'm not a sports enthusiast, but recognized O. J. from the Avis ads — and I couldn't get over what a beautiful couple they were. "I wonder what their lives are like," I thought.

My former boss, Mike Medavoy, wanted to cast O. J. as the original Terminator, irony of ironies. James Cameron held out for Arnold because no one associated him with rent-a-cars!

Many years later, I was very proud that my friend Jeannie's mother Betty Baruch was one of the Riviera Country Club members who formed a human chain across the driveway when O. J. showed up to play the day after his acquittal. For some reason, he wasn't a member, just someone's chronic guest.

Talk about someone who was given every gift in the world and yet could never get past his own brutal narcissism and selfishness. I'm sorry, I think the bugger should have gotten the Big Shot years ago.

Anyway, thanks for the column!


DianeDimond December 16, 2008 at 1:16 am

Anne – Love that my column sparked all those memories. Thanks for sharing! ~ DD


Lyn December 16, 2008 at 2:29 am

Anne..are you from England by any chance??? I agree, have never thought of anyone as narcissistic as Simpson..he just makes my blood boil.


Janet Turner December 16, 2008 at 3:17 am

All I can say is I am glad I won't be him on Judgement Day.


DianeDimond December 16, 2008 at 11:18 am

Albuquerque Journal Reader Reverend Mary writes:

The murders occurred while I was preparing to move back to Albuquerque after
my health failed. There was no doubt in my mind then, and now, that O. J. is
guilty of such a heinous crime. Whether one is of my racial makeup or of
some other, if the punishment fits the crime, then so be it.

This man is inherently evil, has no respect for womanhood, and thinks nothing
of the abuse he has inflicted on so many women. Perhaps God will convict his
heart and cause an humble, penitent soul to emerge from his entire being, but
I wouldn't hold my breath waiting for this metamorphosis to take place.

(Reverend) Mary E. Woods


Diane December 17, 2008 at 1:10 pm

Albuquerque Journal Reader Scotti writes:
” well i cant believe that someone finally wrote and told it just like it is about one of the most dangerous and demented men who has breathed air and taken up space in the history of this great country of ours.

Somehow you need to see if you can get your wonderful article to go world wide on AP or UPI. Every person needs to read this well written masterpiece.”


Diane December 17, 2008 at 1:11 pm

DD Website Reader Don S. writes:

“Diane: My version is somewhat different than most on this issue. First, I was not there and do not know if he did or did not do it. Second I was not placed in a position of having to form an opinion and render a verdict on the question. I think he has been duly convicted in the court of public opinion and has no chance of redeeming himself in the public’s eye. What I do know and rely on is he will account for all his actions one day as we all will. I also know the scriptures admonish us to judge not that we be not judged and that we will be judged as we have judged others. I would also say I am in favor of capital punishment if it is absolutely proven that the person committed the crime. Living is sometimes a greater punishment than dying. According to the Gospel of Jesus Christ, as I know it, there are only a few errors that cannot be repented of and receive forgiveness for.
Murder is not one of them. There is a book that is well used in our church, by Spencer W. Kimball, “Miracle of Forgiveness” which is a very good treatment of the subject of sin and forgiveness. “


Diane December 17, 2008 at 1:12 pm

Huffington Post Reader Jason writes:

I had the opportunity to read your recent article on O.J. on the Huffington site. Your bias sentiment is sickening.

I’m one of the few African Americans that believes the idiot did it (i.e. the murders) and I felt totally beside myself when he walked. But, now, to see what took place in Vegas, and the fact that indeed it is a life sentence for him, I can not help but feel equally sickened. Not because, for all intents and purposes, an innocent man went to prison, (because, lets face it, there was no specific intent to commit a burglary ——-which should have been enough to obtain an acquittal). But, because people like you promenade around overtly joyous over the malfunction of a system that is objectively racist and dysfunctional.

God forbid, but, should, (or, rather when), you yourself fall victim to a crime, fate will have it that your perpetrator will be released, ROR, (and acquitted) while your children mourn and your body rots; (that is just your karma). And, on that day, not if that day comes (but when), I will feel equally sickened.

Here’s to the stench of your rotting body and the total damnation of your soul for the sewing of such bias prejudice that you have so perfectly disseminated while on this earth.

I look forward to reading about all the gruesome details of your demise; may it be sooner rather than later for all humanity’s sake. “


Janet Turner December 17, 2008 at 4:52 pm

Wow! Someone had there bloomers in a twist there! How can this person honestly say he was innocent especially when the cameras..( and microphones) caught him?
The nasy comments about you, Diane , I believe were uncalled for. As I have said all along….What goes around comes around.


Diane December 20, 2008 at 12:33 pm

Web site Reader Thomas J. writes:
“Ms. Diamond,
It amazes me, after reading your article “Bye Bye O.J. Simpson”, how you as a so called “Investigative Reporter”, renders that title bankrupt as a result of a lack of integrity. What this article sounds like to me is a long diatribe of an angry person, masking her bias towards the convicted subject. Yours is not the writing of a professional reporter, and certainly not that of an investigative reporter. Both titles carry a certain expectation of due diligence, and the second, “Investigative Reporter” certainly must include that requirement. You, as a professional journalist, and trustee of the fourth estate, must do your due diligence. However in the case of O.J. Simpson you haven’t done anything at all other than accept what has been placed in hand by officers of the court of L.A. County, which still may be under federal supervision as a result of the revelations of malfeasance and planted evidence in the Rampart Scandal. The perception that I get from reading your article is that it sounds like the ramblings of an injured and biased Jewish woman, whether you are or not, is beside the point. You’ve abandoned any professional decorum and disclosed your hostility based upon what you perceive to be the truth as it relates to O.J. Simpson and apparently angered internally because another Jewish individual, Ronald Goldman, was killed….”


Diane December 20, 2008 at 12:37 pm


“You are so far off the mark it isn’t even funny.

I am a Roman Catholic. You show your bias and pattern of discrimination by assuming my last name is Jewish. Look closely. …. There is no “A” in Dimond. It’s not a Jewish name, but a French name – pronounced Dee-mon by ancestors of old.

In fact you need to look more closely than just the spelling of my name. What you read was an Op-Ed column. That stands for Opinion/Editorial. And as an American I am allowed to have an opinion, whether you agree with my opinion or not.

Rampart – Schm-part – I covered the OJ Simpson criminal trial. I was there, standing in the blood, on Bundy street as the morgue truck pulled away with the bodies. I’m sure I heard, first hand, more of the facts of the original criminal case than you did.

I reject your opinion as just relayed to me as uninformed, un-intelligent and not based on any facts at all. But I do respect your right to express such an opinion and I will post it on my web site.

Have a nice holiday season.

Diane Dimond


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