Simpson Tries on New Pair Of Gloves
LOS ANGELES (AP) _ Prosecutors had O.J. Simpson put on a new pair of gloves today similar to the infamous bloody gloves, and this time the gloves fit.
The demonstration was an attempt by the prosecution to recover from one of its biggest setbacks during the trial _ when Simpson struggled to put on the bloody gloves last week.
``I think they fit quite well,″ glove expert Richard Rubin testified after Simpson’s latest demonstration for the jury.
Simpson walked to a place before the jury, putting on the left and then the right extra-large Aris brown leather gloves. The gloves were a little tight but Simpson was able to get them over both hands with no difficulty.
Last week, Simpson grimaced and struggled while putting on gloves found near the bodies of his ex-wife Nicole and her friend, and from behind his house.
Prosecutors contended those gloves shrank from exposure to the victims’ blood. Simpson also was wearing latex gloves last week to avoid contaminating the evidence.
Also today, a judge in Kansas City ruled that Kansas City Chiefs running back Marcus Allen would not be ordered to testify in Simpson’s murder trial about his alleged affair with Ms. Simpson.
Jackson County Circuit Judge Thomas Clark ruled on a request from Simpson’s lawyers, who had filed court documents that described Allen as a ``necessary and material witness.″
In seeking today’s demonstration, Deputy District Attorney Chris Darden argued that the new gloves were in the same condition as the other gloves before they were soaked with blood.
The defense objected strongly.
This is a ``bogus courtroom demonstration in which they seek to capture some credibility for a mistake they made last Thursday,″ Johnnie Cochran Jr. said. ``We’re just spinning our wheels because they want to end on some kind of a high note.″
Judge Lance Ito allowed the demonstration after Rubin, former vice president of Aris Isotoner Inc., was called to testify that the new gloves were the same size as the evidence gloves were when new.
Several pairs of new gloves were sent by overnight mail to the judge by the glove maker.
The prosecution decided to seek the new demonstration after Rubin measured Simpson’s left hand at 9 1/2 inches around and the right at 9 5/8 inches.
In arguing for the new demonstration, Darden said use of the new gloves would be more realistic than last week’s demonstration, widely seen as a major gaffe by the prosecution.
``Mr. Simpson won’t have the opportunity at that time to put on latex gloves and jack around and play games for the jury,″ Darden said.
Cochran objected to the prosecutor’s colorful language and Ito warned Darden, ``I don’t need that terminology here.″
On Tuesday, Darden and co-prosecutor Marcia Clark announced that they are nearly finished laying out the state’s case and will not be calling some witnesses already subpoenaed.
``I have never presented a case with so much information in my entire life,″ a beaming Clark said. ``It’s really time to get the case to the jury. They’re ready.″
Darden said prosecutors would not call any more witnesses to describe violent and obsessive acts Simpson allegedly committed against his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson. Some of the witnesses had already been subpoenaed.
Cochran said today on ABC’s ``Good Morning America″ that prosecutors had failed to prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt and were making a false show of confidence.
``But one of the reasons we are going to put on a defense is that Mr. Simpson has always said, `Look, I don’t want just reasonable doubt. I’m innocent. I want to be acquitted based on the fact that I did not commit these murders.′ So we’re going to go forward.″ Cochran said he expected a defense to take about six weeks.
Darden had publicly challenged Cochran on Tuesday:
``Mr. Cochran, you’ve been mouthing off for the past 12 months. OK, Johnnie, these are baseless allegations of conspiracy and contamination. ... Now’s the time to put up or shut up.
``This is good evidence, this is strong evidence, and it’s the kind of evidence that causes defendants to be convicted.″
As he left the courthouse Tuesday, Cochran smiled broadly and told reporters: ``I have four words for Chris Darden: The gloves didn’t fit.″
Asked if the incident had anything to do with the prosecution’s strategy change, Clark replied, ``Nothing, nothing, nothing.″
``We’re ready to rest with a mountain of evidence against this guy,″ Darden said.
Two other witnesses testified today.
Kathleen Delaney, attorney for the Mirage hotel in Las Vegas, presented records showing Simpson girlfriend Paula Barbieri checked in at 1:59 p.m. June 12 _ the day of the murders _ on a reservation guaranteed the day before by singer Michael Bolton, and she checked out at 1:46 p.m. June 15.
LuEllen Robertson, records custodian for Air Touch Cellular, presented records showing six calls were made June 12 from Simpson’s cellular phone to Barbieri’s phone numbers in West Los Angeles and Florida. The calls either went unanswered or only brief connection was made, suggesting a message was left on an answering machine.
The records also showed a 3-minute, 9-second call to Ms. Simpson’s home at 2:18 p.m., about eight hours before the time prosecutors say the murders occurred.