CNN O.J. Simpson Trial

'We are the voices of calm and reason'

Clark
& Cochran

Prosecutors underscore evidence in final argument

September 29, 1995
Web posted at: 8:20 p.m. EDT

LOS ANGELES (CNN) -- On the last day of arguments in the "trial of the century," prosecutors pleaded with jurors to convict O.J. Simpson based on the evidence.

"We are the voices of calm and reason," prosecutor Christopher Darden said.

Prosecutor Marcia Clark, who followed Darden, made good on her promise Friday to add passion to her closing argument.

Clark told the jurors she had been a defense attorney, but became a prosecutor in part because it allowed her to refuse to prosecute bad cases.

"If there was evidence of a conspiracy, it would be my obligation to dismiss, pure and simple, and I'd go on to the next case, but there isn't," Clark said. (130K WAV or AIFF sound)

Defense attorneys objected vehemently to Clark's statement. Judge Lance Ito warned Clark she was walking a fine line, but allowed her to continue.

Darden agreed with Cochran that former detective Mark Fuhrman is a racist, but unlike the defense, he said Fuhrman's racism had nothing to do with O.J. Simpson.

"Let me ask you this," he said to the jury. "If you were to acquit, what the explanation would you give the day after the acquittal? You'd say racism? Would you say it's because of racism in the LAPD? That's what they want you to say," he said, pointing to the defense table. (135K WAV or AIFF sound)

Darden told the majority black jury "it's time to stand up" and not let racism blind them.

"No one is above the law, not the police, not the rich," Darden said. "Everybody knows he (Simpson) killed" Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman, he said.

Darden was followed by Clark, who, despite a rapid-fire series of defense objections, led jurors once again through key portions of the evidence, attempting to answer questions and doubts raised by the defense.

Darden said he was anticipating loud, forceful and provocative arguments from the defense, and he wasn't disappointed. But, he said, he also knew they wouldn't talk much about the evidence.

He said the defense had to attack the science because all the evidence points to Simpson as the killer. He said not only does common sense dictate that he's guilty, but it's been proven to a "scientific certainty."

Darden said if the jury wanted to deliver a message about racism, they couldn't do it by acquitting Simpson. "You can't send a message to Fuhrman or anyone else," Darden said.

"It is true that Fuhrman is a racist. And it is also true that he (Simpson) killed these two people. And we proved that he killed the two people," Darden said. "The evidence is there, you just have to find your way through the smoke."

Clark said the defense had tried to show that the prosecution and detectives were either "stupid bumblers or brilliant conspirators."

She attacked defense expert witness Dr. Frederick Rieders, who said he found preservative in a blood stain from Nicole Simpson's back gate. She said Rieders was an expert "for hire" who had been unreliable in another case. She noted that Dr. Michael Baden, a defense pathologist, had been paid more than $100,000 and had offered testimony about Goldman's wounds that "defied gravity."

Darden urged the jury to rely on their notes, the transcript, what they remember, and not to be mislead by the attorneys. He reminded them that the defense:

"They want you to throw your common sense out the window," Darden said, adding that the defense was practicing a double standard.

He also turned around a defense theme -- "don't trust the messenger" -- and said it was the defense who were not to be trusted.

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