|Nov. 14th, 2007 @ 08:53 am "Simpson responded with laughter."|
|How awesome is OJ's company?|
Earlier Tuesday, McClinton pleaded guilty to reduced charges of conspiracy to commit robbery and robbery, a deal which required his truthful testimony against the remaining defendants. Alexander has also agreed to plead guilty to a charge of conspiracy to commit armed robbery.When it comes time to commit some felonies, I know whose gang I'm joining. Has to be the guy every prosecutor in the country would wet themselves to put in jail. That way, not only can I be sure they'll dream up a dozen charges to file against us, I can look forward to every newspaper in the country printing my name on a regular basis, usually in the same sentence with "kidnapping", "robbery", "plea", and/or "world's biggest idiot."
The preliminary hearing is being held to determine whether Simpson and two co-defendants -- Charles Stewart and Charles Ehrlich -- should be tried.
Alexander, who described himself as Simpson's former golfing buddy, said Simpson met with him and McClinton outside The Palms casino on the afternoon September 13 and asked them to get "some heat." Simpson asked the men to accompany him to a room at the Palace Station hotel to retrieve items Simpson believed belonged to him, Alexander said.
McClinton testified that Simpson asked to see Alexander's concealed weapons permit and asked them to accompany him as "security" later in the day. He also said Simpson told him there might be a gun in the room where the memorabilia was being sold.
After meeting Simpson, McClinton and Alexander went to McClinton's house to change clothes and retrieve two loaded handguns, McClinton said.
And it's clear this wasn't a spontaneously committed impulse crime. They drove home to change clothes and pick up loaded guns! I'm not clear on their backgrounds but it doesn't sound like his golfing buddies were career criminals - semi-regular joes, hypnotized by the allure of celebrity.
Alexander testified that Simpson initially said he wanted the guns to remain in the men's holsters, but he wanted them to be visible so the people in the hotel room would be intimidated.Oh, I take back my criticism. I didn't realize they had obtained expert legal advice from OJ before proceeding.
Alexander said when he asked Simpson what would happen if the police became involved, Simpson said, "F--- the police. Are they going to arrest me for taking my own s---?"
OJ sure must appreciate having buddies who are willing to commit felonies as favors... right?
Alexander testified that after realizing he had participated in a crime, he asked Simpson if he would bail the men out if they got in trouble. He said Simpson told him, "There won't be any trouble if you get out of town."This is the hidden side of the sickness that is the celebrity culture - fame is so important that people will commit major crimes to ingratiate themselves with one of the world's most notorious murderers, even as the killer laughs at them for requesting a share of the spoils.
He quoted Simpson as saying, "What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas, unless you're O.J. Simpson."
Alexander said Simpson said the men should "just stick" to the story that there weren't any guns used during the incident. He also said when he tried to feel Simpson out about giving them one of the retrieved items as compensation for their efforts, Simpson responded with laughter.
I missed the OJ trial when it was happening - at the time my life was computers and nothing else - but earlier this year I saw that bugliosi had written a book about it. Since he wrote my favorite true-crime book ever, I bought it. Wow. Although I avoided giving the trial direct attention, it was impossible to avoid for a year or so, yet somehow with all that 24-hour coverage on the sixteen OJ channels, I never heard how obvious it was that he was guilty. You ought to be able to convict someone three times over with the evidence they had, but somehow the fact that mark fuhrman had used "the N-word" in a tape-recorded phone conversation meant OJ had to be acquitted.
The fuhrman sideshow of the sideshow was a real corker, by the way. When it became clear to him that he was going to be a target for perjury prosecution, he wisely took the fifth amendment. Once the defense knew he wasn't taking the fifth selectively (which seems to be very unusual and dangerous) they took full advantage by asking ridiculous questions like "Did you plant OJ's blood at the crime scene" to which he was stuck taking the fifth. Pretty powerful stuff when the jury box is holding twelve vegetables.
The intellectual acumen of the jury was something to behold. After finishing outrage, I ordered the book by the foreman of the jury. Bugliosi had slammed it several times and I wanted to see how bad it was. Oh my god. These are the people who hold your life in their hands if you are ever accused of anything. During the OJ trial they spent months on the DNA evidence, and would belabor some points so far into the ground that corpses complained, yet some of the jurors were still impervious to any of its relevance. What a way to make life-and-death decisions. "If it doesn't fit, you must acquit!" That catchy jingle held more weight than the rest of the trial put together.
I wonder how often people who are as innocent as OJ was guilty (but as poor and unknown as OJ was rich and famous) are imprisoned... or executed. Even a 1% wrongful imprisonment rate on our two million prisoners would mean 20,000 people right now are behind bars for nothing. (That's of course on top of the hundreds of thousands in prison who are "guilty" of getting high or other victimless "crimes".) And these days I doubt it's as low as 1%.