cover image O.J. the Last Word

O.J. the Last Word

Gerry L. Spence. St. Martin's Press, $22.95 (274pp) ISBN 978-0-312-18009-6

O.J. Simpson is guilty of two bloody, brutal and cruel murders, according to noted defense lawyer and judicial gadfly Spence (How to Argue and Win Every Time). Nevertheless, Spence also believes that the jury in Simpson's criminal trial reached the correct verdict, based on the evidence presented by a team of prosecutors that he casts as generally inept and self-aggrandizing. He contends that Simpson would have been convicted by the same jury that acquitted him if different prosecutors had chosen evidence that was left out of the presentation. Spence pulls a few of his punches, however, giving Judge Ito a passing mark, for instance. And he is nowhere near as hard on prosecutors Chris Darden and Marcia Clark as others have been, though he has little regard for the defense's so-called ""dream team."" While Spence indulges in too much speculation about Simpson's motives, and lessens the impact of his analysis by occasionally launching into diatribes about the sad state of American society, he seems an accurate reader of the scales of justice, whether or not his is indeed the ""last word"" on this most notorious of cases. Literary Guild selection. (Nov.)