It’s been 25 years since O.J. Simpson's ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ronald Goldman were found stabbed to death in a home Brentwood, California, sparking what many called the trial of the century.
The former football star was accused of their murders. Ultimately, after more than a year of courtroom drama that seemed to envelop the entire country, the jury found O.J. Simpson not guilty.
But Simpson's woes were far from over.
A jury found him liable for his ex-wife's death and the death of Goldman. He was ordered to pay the victims' families millions of dollars.
Then in 2007, Simpson was arrested again this time in Las Vegas. He was accused of leading a group of men into a hotel room at the Palace Station in an effort to get back sports memorabilia that he claimed belonged to him.
Eventually, Simpson was convicted of assault, kidnapping, and armed robbery.
Simpson served nine years at the Lovelock Correctional Center.
Since his 2017 release, Simpson has been living in Las Vegas. And Linda Deutsch was able to talk with him.
Deutsch is a retired reporter for the Associated Press who covered the Simpson trial in 1994.
“He and I have talked many, many times over the years ever since his trial,” she said.
Deutsch said Simpson sees her as a reporter that he can trust and someone who has never said he was guilty and never said he was not guilty.
Deutsch said she reached out to Simpson to see if he would talk to her about the 25th anniversary of the murders.
“He didn’t talk to me about that," she said, "He talked about his life now about he’s never going to talk again about those issues and it was interesting to hear how he’s living.”
She said Simpson is a living a quiet life in Summerlin, golfing every day, seeing his family a lot and going out to dinner on occasion. When he does go out to dinner, he is often surrounded by people wanting to take his picture.
“He’s probably the most sought after selfie person in town,” she said, “He said he likes his life in Las Vegas. He said, ‘people here have really been nice to me. It’s as if everybody in town is trying to apologize for what happened to me here.’”
As far as the conviction for the incident at Palace Station, Simpson told Deutsch he thought it was unfair but he believes in the justice system and took the punishment he was given.
Deutsch said there was a time when Simpson sought out the spotlight, even after his acquittal, he would try to get attention from the media. She believes those days are long past.
“I think that he learned his lesson of the negatives of being in the spotlight," she said.
She said the former football star and double homicide suspect is aiming for a quiet life in Las Vegas.
“I sincerely hope he gets his wish because I don’t want to cover any more trouble with him!”
The so-called Trial of the Century had a lasting impact on a lot of people. For Deutsch, it changed her career.
“In many ways, it changed my career because I was tapped to be the pool reporter during jury selection,” she said.
The pool reporter is the one reporter picked to go into the courtroom to watch the proceedings and bring back the details for the other reporters that can't go into the courtroom because there isn't enough space.
The position of pool reporter meant she was on TV every day during jury selection. TV shows covering the trial quickly tapped her as a guest. To this day, she gets calls from TV producers asking her to come on shows to talk about the Simpson trial.
However, the most recent article on Simpson might be the final one.
“People ask me why I want to even do this story this time and I said that I had covered him for 25 years and there was a long break when I didn’t talk to him when he was in prison and then he got out and he was not giving interviews and so we really had no update on what he was doing. And I felt like this was a chapter, maybe a final chapter, for us in tracking O.J. Simpson and we should see what was going on with him,” she said.
Linda Deutsch, Journalist
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