The event known as “The Trial of the Century” managed to live up to its name, even decades later (hell, even a new CENTURY later). Former NFL running back, O.J. “The Juice” Simpson was busy living up the single life in Southern California in 1995. Simpson had been divorced from his second wife, Nicole Brown Simpson for three years after “irreconcilable differences” and actual spousal abuse drew them rightfully apart. On June 12, 1994, both Brown and friend Ron Goldman were brutally murdered outside of Nicole’s house in the Brentwood area of LA. As the story goes, Simpson was arrested and put on trial with the entire world watching. He was represented by his very own “dream team” composed of Johnnie Cochran, Robert Kardashian, F. Lee Bailey, and Robert Shapiro. He was found not guilty despite all the overwhelming evidence against him and the world went crazy. Years later, while some people who were convinced he was innocent have since changed their minds some, strangely enough, have not.
15 Martin Sheen
WAIT, WHAT? THE FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES THINKS THAT SIMPSON IS INNOCENT??? Okay, maybe he wasn’t the REAL president, but still. Actor Martin Sheen of The West Wing fame has something to say about Simpson, and it’s not what you think. Sheen narrated (and executive produced) the controversial series Hard Evidence: O.J. Is Innocent and believes the title himself, weirdly enough. “What if the real killer were still at large?” Sheen asks a very skeptical audience. “And finally, what if a grand jury convened to reconsider the case based on new evidence?” Sheen has always appeared to be the voice of reason in the Sheen family (he’s the father of Charlie Sheen and Emilio Estevez), but this seems a little far fetched, in my opinion. All to their own, I suppose.
14 Kim Kardashian
There were a few things that annoyed me as I watched American Crime Story: The People Vs. O.J. Simpson last year. One was the fact that the dialogue felt very Soap Opera-y and plastic. The other was that they seemed to glorify the Kardashian clan in order to appease the millennial generation (so very over the top). So, naturally, the media focused on the thoughts of the dingbat Kardashian sisters, who were really too young to remember anything during that part of their young lives anyway. Except for Kim Kardashian, who was 13 at the time of the murders (I believe Kourtney is the oldest one, but who really cares what she thinks). The show glorified a Louis Vuitton bag that seemingly hid the murder weapon that killed Brown and Goldman. Robert Kardashian had the bag itself and, of course, Kim “totally” went through it and admitted to it to GQ. Was it in there? Nope. Many people believe that the Kardashians have long thought their godfather was innocent even if they don't publicly broadcast it, so it doesn’t come as a shock that even if Kim did find anything in there, she would never admit it, even though the show “totally” believes she would have.
13 F. Lee Bailey
I know what you’re saying: “But OF COURSE his lawyers believed their client was innocent! That’s the way it works!”. Um, how about no. In the FX series American Crime Story: The People Vs. O.J. Simpson, not all of Simpson’s “dream team” appears too convinced that their client wasn’t guilty. Most notably was Robert Kardashian, the famous father of those dumb-dumb Kardashian kids, who was close friends with Simpson. The show highlighted the fact that Kardashian was in constant doubt that Simpson was the murderer and it strained his friendship with Juice. However, lawyer F. Lee Bailey was convinced (or rather, put on a convincing show) that his client was innocent and even maintains his loyalty even after 20 plus years. “It rubbed a lot of luster off American jurisprudence and has held us up to ridicule,” Bailey said a couple years ago. “The public was more poorly informed than in any other case that I’ve handled.”
12 Shirley Baker
While some members of Simpson’s own family backed the hell away from him after the murders (including his own kids), his own sister was dead set on maintaining that her brother was innocent and that time will eventually prove to the non-believers that this was true. Shirley Baker still spoke to her brother every week while he was in jail for armed robbery and kidnapping. “I know he did not kill Nicole and Ron,” Baker told Inside Edition. She even said she and her husband slept in the same room as Simpson after the murders, fearing he might try to take his own life. “He was just out of it. He just kept saying, “Nicole, Nicole, Nicole.” Baker would not for one second turn her back on her brother like so many other people had. “My brother would not slit his wife’s throat, leave her outside and with the door open with his two children upstairs in the bedroom. I will go to my death bed for that.”
11 William Dear
William Dear is the author of the controversial book O.J. Is Guilty but Not of Murder which paints O.J.’s son Jason Simpson as the murderer. Yes, you read that right. The book is what sparked the Sheen narrated series Hard Evidence: O.J. Is Innocent. Even though the evidence presented in the book is circumstantial, Dear claims it was Jason’s history of violent mental illness that brought him to this conclusion. Dear says that Jason was completely and utterly infatuated with his step-mother Nicole and it drove him to kill her in jealous rage after Brown had missed a family dinner she was supposed to have with the kids and O.J.. Dear also claims that O.J. even helped his son cover up the crime and took the fall himself, believing he would be found not guilty. This is the story that Sheen believes really happened, which is why he agreed to narrate the series.
10 Derrick Levasseur
Sure, because who DOESN’T want to hear from a reality TV personality if he believes a man is innocent or guilty of murder?? Despite his history with reality TV, Big Brother 16 contestant Derrick Levasseur is actually a police sergeant who got involved in the Hard Evidence series with Sheen and Dear. “I’m just a guy who happened to be on a reality show,” Levasseur told The Hollywood Reporter during an interview. “And now I’m on an investigative network. I’m a cop. I didn’t try to be an actor. This is what I do for a living.” Levasseur said he was brought on as an outside cop in order to prove that Simpson is, in fact, innocent and that the other suspect has entered the story in order to prove the theory so. At first, he had to be convinced with hard evidence, which was actually presented to the cop, and he set out to prove the theory correct on the series itself.
9 Kris Mohandie
Kris Mohandie is an LAPD forensic psychologist who teamed up with Dear and Lavasseur in order to reinvestigate the case and prove to the general public that it was son Jason who committed the heinous murders. Much like Dear and Lavasseur, Mohandie had to be convinced that all the evidence is there for the taking, which is why he agreed to embark on the investigation in the series. Mohandie has been in the field for over 19 years and had responded to the Simpson barricade. His work has been featured on nearly every singletelevision network and stands by his work on the case. Of course, viewers were skeptical about all this info flying at them since everyone is so dead set on reviving up old, famous, murder cases like the Simpson case and the JonBenet Ramsey case. So regardless of Mohandie’s credentials, people are hesitant to jump on board the O.J. innocent thing.
Last year, the website BuzzfeedBlue.com presented an interesting, yet seemingly, conspiracy that Simpson DID commit the murders, but something drove him to do it mentally. Simpson played in the NFL for 11 seasons and became a victim of brain damage – damage that led him to commit the killings and suffer decades of violent behavior. If you’re familiar with the Will Smith movie Concussion, you know what Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (known as CTE) is. Smith played Dr. Bennet Omalu, the doctor who discovered the disease back in 2002. CTE is caused by traumatic impact to the head, which results in protein buildup in the brain’s blood vessels. This would often effect players and former players’ cognitive functions with no visible symptoms. CTE cannot be diagnosed until after death because you have to chop up the brain in order to see it. Most players who have suffered from CTE often act out violently and/or end up killing themselves. Buzzfeed presents this theory and believes that while Simpson DID commit the murders, he was not aware or had control over his own actions thanks to the disease.
7 Clay Rogers
Clay Rogers is the brother of serial killer Glen Rogers, who is currently on death row in Florida, and claims that Glen is the one responsible for murdering Brown and Goldman. Back in 2012, Clay Rogers was featured on a Discovery documentary called My Brother The Serial Killer and had a few things to say about his brother in regards to the famous killings. “I’m absolutely certain that my brother Glen killed Nicole Simpson and Ron Goldman,” he stated. “I know my brother did it because I’ve seen proof that he was there.” Glen Rogers even wrote a letter detailing the murders and claimed that he didn’t want O.J. to take credit for what he says he did. However, Rogers is out of appeals so there’s really nothing anyone can do if he, in fact, is the murderer. Glen Rogers was a handyman who worked on Nicole’s house in 1994. Clay claims his brother called him a couple days before the murders and bragged that he was going to “take her down”.
6 Sterling K. Brown
Times have long changed for actor Sterling K. Brown, who starred in the Emmy Award winning American Crime Story. Brown played Christopher Darden in the limited series and it was a role that changed his life in more ways than one. Brown admitted that back in his Stanford days, he believed that Simpson was innocent and was thrilled when Simpson was acquitted of the charges during the famous 1995 trial. But since playing Darden, he has since changed his mind. “For me, all the evidence that I saw, and playing Christopher Darden, it’s hard for me not to think like [Darden] thought,” Brown told GQ magazine. “The evidence led to one person. A lot of people have questions as to whether somebody else could’ve possibly been involved, which is possible. Anything’s possible. But I definitely think he was present at the deaths of Ron Goldman and Nicole Brown Simpson.” My, have times changed.
5 Sarah Paulson
Sarah Paulson played the pivotal Marcia Clark in the limited series and went on to win an Emmy for her portrayal. Now, while she claims she thought O.J. was guilty long before she even did the series, she said fairness should be taken into consideration because she was immature at the time of the trial itself and she was naïve about the entire process. “Does it matter what I think? I do think he did it,” Paulson told GQ. “I thought he did it before I played the part. But, in all fairness to him, I thought he did it based on my very loosely held understanding of what happened – because I wasn’t focused on the trial. I was 19 at the time. Now my opinion is one based on what I think are irrefutable pieces of evidence, plain and simple. That comes from having played Marcia.” To be clear, Paulson didn’t believe Simpson to be innocent during the trial, but that her opinion had no evidence (none she could understand at the time at least) that proved him guilty.
4 Robert Shaprio
Robert Shaprio was the first to get O.J.’s ear after the famous “Not Guilty” verdict was read that fateful day in court. People noticed that right after the verdict was read, Simpson leaned into Robert Shaprio and whispered something in his ear. Shaprio, over 20 years later, revealed what was said: “You told me this would be the result from the beginning. You were right,” Juice whispered to his lawyer. Shaprio admitted to TV personality Megyn Kelly that he believes there was always TWO people involved in the slayings, not just one. Shaprio was the one who infamously told Simpson to try on the glove in front of the jury and shock the world, knowing that the glove wouldn’t fit. This led to Johnny Cochran’s famous line later on “If it (the glove) doesn't fit – you must acquit.”
3 Khloe Kardashian
Oh, good lord. A few years ago, rumors started swirling that O.J. Simpson might be the real father of reality TV personality Khloe Kardashian. Simpson even got on board and agreed to take a paternity test in order to see for himself (I believe the only evidence anyone has is that Kardashian is taller than hell). Khloe herself even joked about it on numerous occasions. But does she believe her Godfather, whom she lovingly referred to as "Uncle" is an innocent man? She went through great lengths not to answer that specific question while sitting with James Cordon on The Late Late Show with James Cordon. In order not to answer a question, she ate a raw, bloody looking fish eye. The kids famously didn’t know which parent to side with during the trial, since mother Kris was close to Brown and believed Juice committed the murder while their father supported his friend in court. Judging by Khloe’s actions, much like sister Kim’s, I do believe she would rather (literally) swallow fish guts than admit she believes he’s guilty because she knows people will turn on her. That’s just one person’s opinion, though.
2 Cuba Gooding Jr.
Actor Cuba Gooding Jr. played O.J. Simpson in American Crime Story and even though the series premiered over a year ago, Gooding Jr. still can’t watch himself or the series itself because playing the former running back took its toll on him and put him in a rather dark place. At the time the entire famous Bronco chase went down, Gooding Jr. was young, but sided with Simpson in the back of that Bronco. “(I was) coming from a Boyz N The Hood screening and now here’s O.J. Simpson being accused of these horrific crimes, and reliving that anger I felt not just as a black man in my youth in Los Angeles, but as a black celebrity,” the actor recalled. “It could have been me in the back of that Bronco.” Today, Gooding Jr will NOT reveal whether he believes Simpson is guilty or innocent, but a lot of his words present a pretty clear picture on where he stands, he’s just playing Switzerland right now. “I look at it as with American politics,” Gooding Jr explains of the situation. “If I told you I was a Republican and you were a Democrat, no matter what I said after that, it would be tempered with your opinions.”
1 O.J. Simpson
Who knows O.J. Simpson better than, well, O.J. Simpson! All of his actions up to the famous verdict had proved that he, in fact, was the culprit. I mean, why would you run from the cops and threaten to take your life? Unless, you know, you were guilty? That’s what people have been asking themselves for years. But Simpson is sticking to his story that the real murderer is out there somewhere. He has assured his family, including his own mother while on her death bed, that he loved his ex-wife very much and would never do anything to harm her (which is why his sister stood so close behind him). But, yet, he went on to be arrested for armed robbery when he should have been searching for the real killer, right? He was playing golf before then – was the real killer on the course? We all know that Simpson will NEVER change his stance while he’s alive, so that’s that.