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O.J.'s instant karma
If only Bob Starkey could be here for this moment.
Bob was my girlfriend Cindy’s dad, and to say that he was obsessed with the first O.J. Simpson trial would be putting it very mildly. I think he was determined to document every second of coverage he could. He would tune in to CNN every day and watch hour after hour, inserting and ejecting a steady barrage of VHS tapes. We’re still finding long-lost tapes packed in cardboard boxes whenever we decide to rummage through the garage or the basement at Cindy’s mother’s house.
I think Bob believed O.J. to be guilty, although he had reservations about what a guilty verdict would do to the social climate in those days. The Los Angeles riots of 1992 were still fresh in the country’s collective conscious.
O.J. was found not guilty on Oct. 3, 1995. Bob passed away on Oct. 23, 1995 – I think Bob took the verdict a little hard. OK, maybe Bob’s passing was due more to a bad heart and a diet rich in fat and cholesterol.
Bob wasn’t around for the civil trial filed against O.J. by the family of Ron Goldman. I wonder how Bob would have taken the guilty verdicts on all eight counts brought against Simpson.
I find it odd that someone can be found not guilty of a criminal act but still be found liable for something that happens as a result of that act. Weird.
Now with O.J. facing a minimum of nine years of a 33-year sentence for robbing two sports memorabilia dealers at gunpoint, I think Bob would feel some satisfaction, like a social compromise has been reached. It’s almost an Al Capone scenario, where the authorities couldn’t get their man on the bigger charge, so they settle to convict him on a lesser charge.
I’m not saying O.J. is guilty or innocent. It is not my place to stand in judgment. All I’m saying is that is seems like karma has come back to haunt a man who, instead of spending his time looking for the real killers as he vowed to do after his 1995 acquittal, spent much of his time on the golf course, in night clubs or writing books detailing how he would have committed the murders had he done them. The only thing he didn’t do after the murder trial was another Naked Gun movie - thank God for small favors!
For a man who ran for 11,236 total career yards during his hall-of-fame NFL career, it now seems that O.J. Simpson’s running days are finally over.