Fam­ily’s pain over OJ book ‘con­fes­sion’

The Jewish Chronicle - - News - BY DANA GLOGER

THE FA­THER and sis­ter of the man killed along­side OJ Simp­son’s for­mer wife 14 years ago have spo­ken of re­ceiv­ing an­tisemitic abuse over their de­ci­sion to pub­lish Mr Simp­son’s “con­fes­sion”.

There was a huge pub­lic out­cry last year when it was an­nounced that News Cor­po­ra­tion would be pub­lish­ing If I Did It, by for­mer Amer­i­can foot­ball player Mr Simp­son. In it, he main­tained that — al­though he had not com­mit­ted the mur­ders of Ni­cole Brown Simp­son, 35, and Ron Gold­man, 25 — if he had been guilty, here was how he would have gone about the killings. The pair were found mur­dered at Ms Brown Simp­son’s Los An­ge­les home in June 1993.

The project sparked out­rage and Ron Gold­man’s sis­ter Kim and fa­ther Fred mounted a sus­tained cam­paign which even­tu­ally led the pub­lish­ers to pulp the book.

But in an un­likely twist, Mr and Ms Gold­man now own the rights to the book and are heav­ily pro­mot­ing its sales. They were awarded the rights in June by a US bank­ruptcy court, to pre­vent Mr Simp­son from prof­it­ing from its sale.

This week in Lon­don, Ron Gold­man’s fa­ther and sis­ter told the JC of the pub­lic re­ac­tion.

“Peo­ple have ac­cused us of just do­ing this for money and of be­ing gold-dig­gers. And many of the com­ments have at­tacked our re­li­gious af­fil­i­a­tion — peo­ple say­ing that we are just like our sur­name and out for gold,” Ms Gold­man, 35, a char­ity di­rec­tor, ex­plained.

“Other peo­ple have made com­ments say­ing that all Jews care about is money and that we are just as bad as the killer. It’s ex­tremely up­set­ting be­cause the money is never what we fo­cused on. Our mis­sion has al­ways been to hold him ac­count­able for killing Ron and Ni­cole.”

Mr Gold­man, 66, added that, by own­ing the rights to the book, they had taken what was Mr Simp­son’s. That, he said, was the only jus­tice they would ever re­ceive.

The pub­li­ca­tion of the book and its hoped-for prof­its also goes some way to cov­er­ing the $19m (£9.5m) Mr Simp­son was or­dered to pay the Gold­mans af­ter he was found li­able for caus­ing the deaths in a civil case in 1997. The money was never paid as Mr Simp­son, now 60, de­clared him­self bank­rupt. With in­ter­est, the amount owed now stands at over $40m (£20m).

In 1995, he was ac­quit­ted of the mur­ders in a crim­i­nal court, in a tele­vised case that cap­tured the at­ten­tion of the global me­dia.

This week, the Gold­mans told the JC that Ron, a waiter and part-time model, fol­lowed Jewish tra­di­tions through­out his short life. He and his sis­ter were raised by their fa­ther af­ter their mother left when they were six and three re­spec­tively.

“We went to tem­ple and were barand bat­mitz­va­hed,” Ms Gold­man said.

Her brother was also in­volved with the B’nai B’rith youth move­ment dur­ing his teenage years. At the age of 13, he told his fa­ther that he wanted to go to Is­rael as his bar­mitz­vah gift.

“He went with a tour group,” Ms Gold­man said. “I re­mem­ber while he was there he was in a bomb shel­ter, and he found it fright­en­ing and fas­ci­nat­ing all at the same time.”

Both Mr and Ms Gold­man ad­mit- ted that they found If I Did It ex­tremely hard to read, as “it was read­ing as the equiv­a­lent of a con­fes­sion, if not a con­fes­sion it­self”, ac­cord­ing to Mr Gold­man. They have there­fore added Con­fes­sion of a Killer as a sub­ti­tle.

“It was very hard to read,” Ms Gold­man agreed. “It fright­ened me hear­ing what Ron and Ni­cole were deal­ing with in their last cou­ple of min­utes. It made me sad, an­gry and re­sent­ful.”

But her fa­ther is adamant that the book should be read.

“As dis­turb­ing as it is, it’s im­por­tant for peo­ple to read this as it’s an in­sight into the mind of a mon­ster who should be vil­i­fied.”

PHOTO: BEN TURNER

Fred and Kim Gold­man are pub­lish­ing Simp­son’s ac­count of the killing

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