WHAT’S the one thing that innocent people don’t do, besides killing people? They never run away. And yet that was how the whole politicised palaver over a simple case of a violent ex-footballer/celebrity butchering his wife and her lover began, with OJ fleeing the cops along the freeways of Los Angeles.
More than 95 million people watched, live, in 1994 as OJ and his good mate Al Cowlings took more than 20 police cars and a swarm of news helicopters on a Blues Brothers-style car chase, albeit one held at just 50km/h, in a white 1993 Ford Bronco.
After the chase, OJ told police, “You let them all know I wasn’t running”, yet inside the Bronco police found a fake goatee and moustache with a bottle of make-up adhesive and receipts from a beauty store, along with Simpson’s passport and a gun.
The car became such a symbol of the polarising race debate around OJ’s trial that Ford saw it as a liability and discontinued the Bronco line in 1996.
Cowlings sold the car for a reported $200,000 in December 1995 – just two months after Simpson was acquitted of the murders against all expectation – because “he couldn’t drive it any longer” due to the publicity. It was reportedly sold to a porn baron, or shrewd investors who are still waiting to cash in almost 20 years later.
The Bronco has subsequently turned up in some odd places, like the lobby of the Luxor Hotel in Las Vegas in mid-2012, where it was used to promote a new museum of sporting memorabilia. Classy.
G TIME OJ Simpson is currently serving 33 years in the Lovestock Correctional Center in Nevada for kidnapping and armed robbery offences in 2008. He has never admitted guilt in the killings of his wife Nicole and her lover Ron Goldman.
Domino’s Pizza enjoyed record sales during the chase, because most Americans were rooted to their television sets watching non-stop coverage.
And getting hungry.