As someone who watched endless hours of this trial on television in the 90s, I wanted to believe this story, but now it appears the knife does not fit and so we must acquit…or at least move on. Here’s the entertaining account that got this story going from celebrity gossip site TMZ:
Our law enforcement sources say the construction worker took the knife to the street, where he saw an LAPD cop. He told the officer where he found the knife and the cop took it.
Turns out the cop — who worked in the traffic division — was off duty at the time, working security for a movie shoot at a house across the street on Rockingham. Our sources say the officer took the knife home and kept it … kept it for years.
In late January of this year, after the cop retired from the LAPD, he contacted a friend who worked in LAPD’s Robbery Homicide Division (RHD). The cop told the friend about the knife and said he was getting it framed to put on his wall. He wanted his friend to get the DR (Departmental Record) number for the Nicole Brown Simpson/Ronald Goldman murder case, which he planned on engraving in the frame.
Rather than give the retired cop the number he wanted to complete his frame job (pun intended) the friend told his superiors about the knife. They were outraged and demanded the retired cop turn it over immediately. Friday afternoon the LAPD confirmed they do have a knife which was turned over to them by a retired officer and that they are testing it in connection with the open case of Nicole Brown and Ron Goldman’s murders.
— NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt (@NBCNightlyNews) March 4, 2016
A bit later in the evening NBC reported sources were telling them the knife in question was inconsistent with the murder weapon“:
The knife found is a relatively inexpensive, small knife typically carried and used by construction workers, gardeners, landscapers or other laborers, the sources said.
The sources would not elaborate on specifics, but they said that the characteristics and condition of the knife were not consistent with the weapon used in the Brown and Goldman murders nor does it appear it was buried for a length of time that would put it in the time frame of the slayings.
So it appears this was either a hoax of some kind or the knife itself was just something that had been dropped by another construction worker. CNN reports the police have called for the person who gave the knife to the retired officer, whoever they are, to come forward. But even if they confirm part of the story that doesn’t make this knife the knife.
The real bottom line is that even if the LAPD did locate the actual knife used to kill Ron and Nicole, OJ Simpson still could not be tried again for the crime. Former Simpson attorney Alan Dershowitz tells CNN, “The only possible way around (double jeopardy) is if you can get a federal indictment for violation of civil rights.” Dershowitz adds that the statute of limitations on such a case would have passed by now.
There is one last possibility. Given that OJ Simpson can’t be legally held accountable for this crime anymore, he could confess and tell us what happened to the knife. Simpson is currently serving a sentence in a Nevada prison for an armed robbery he committed in 2008. He is eligible for parole in 2017. Confessing to a notorious double murder may not be the approach he wants to take with the parole board, though I suppose it could be presented as proof he is a new man.