Chronology of the O.J. Simpson Trials

Judge Lance Ito

June 12, 1994 Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman are stabbed to death.  Their bodies found in the front courtyard of the Nicole's condominium in Brentwood.
June 13, 1994 O.J. Simpson is notified of the murders while on a business trip in Chicago.  He returns to Los Angeles, is temporarily handcuffed, and taken in for questioning.  Robert Shapiro is contacted on Simpson's behalf and asked to become  defense counsel.
June 16, 1994 The funerals of the victims are held.
June 17, 1994 About to be arrested for murder, Simpson slips out of Robert Kardashian's home.  He is chased by police while riding in his white Ford Bronco, driven by friend A.C. Cowlings.  When he returns to his home on Rockingham, Simpson is taken into custody.
June 24, 1994 Grand jury recused.
July 8, 1994 Six-day preliminary hearing ends with Judge Kathleen Kennedy-Powell ruling there is sufficient evidence for O.J. Simpson to stand trial on two counts of first-degree murder.
July 22, 1994 O.J. pleads "absolutely 100 percent not guilty" to the charges.  Judge Lance A. Ito assigned to hear case.
August 18, 1994 Defense counsel files motion to obtain personnel records of Detective Mark Fuhrman.
September 2, 1994 District attorney files motion to sequester jury.
September 9, 1994 District attorney announces that the death penalty will not be sought.
September 19, 1994 Judge Ito upholds the legality of the search of Simpson's home.
November 3, 1994 Jury panel selected: eight black, one white, one Hispanic, two mixed race; eight women, four men. 
December 8, 1994 Alternate jury selected.
January 4, 1995 Defense waives hearing for challenge of prosecution's DNA evidence.
January 11, 1995 The jury is sequestered.  Hearing held on admissibility of domestic-abuse evidence.
January 13, 1995 Prosecutor Christopher Darden and defense attorney Johnnie Cochran argue over racist language regarding the upcoming testimony of Mark Fuhrman.
January 24, 1995 Trial opens.  Prosecutors Marcia Clark and Christopher Darden deliver opening statements.
January 25, 1995 Johnnie Cochran makes opening statement for the defense.
January 27, 1995 O.J. Simpson's book, I Want to Tell You, is published.
February 3, 1995 Nicole Brown's sister Denise testifies about O.J. Simpson's abuse of her sister.
February 12, 1995 Jurors take field trip to Simpson home and Bundy Drive crime scene.
March 15, 1995 Detective Mark Fuhrman, cross-examined by defense attorney F. Lee Bailey, denies using the word "nigger" at any time in the previous ten years.
April 11, 1995 L.A.P.D. criminalist Dennis Fung concedes, under cross-examination by defense attorney Barry Scheck, procedural errors.
April 21, 1995 After three sheriff's deputies are reassigned, jurors protest.  They first refuse to come to court, then show up dressed in black.
May 4, 1995 Wrongful death suit filed on behalf of the Goldmans.
May 10, 1995 DNA testimony begins.
May 15, 1995 Simpson tries on the bloody gloves.  They seem not to fit.
July 6, 1995 The prosecution rests.
July 10, 1995 The defense calls its first witness, Arnelle Simpson, O.J. Simpson's daughter.
August 15, 1995 Controversy over possible conflict of interest concerning Judge Ito.  Marchia Clark asks Ito to recuse himself from Simpson trial.
August 16, 1995 Clark changes her mind on Ito recusal. 
August 18, 1995 Superior court judge John Reid rules that Captain York's testimony is not  relevant to Simpson trial.
August 29, 1995 Fuhrman tapes played in court, with jury absent.
August 31, 1995 Judge Ito rules that jury will hear two excerpts of controversial tapes. 
September 5, 1995 The jury hears excerpts from Fuhrman tapes.
September 6, 1995 With jury absent, Mark Fuhrman appears on stand.  He refuses to answer questions, citing his Fifth Amendment privilege against self incrimination.
September 7, 1995 The defense announces that Simpson won't testify on his own behalf.  The defense asks Judge Ito to instruct jury as to reason for Fuhrman's further nonappearance.  Judge agrees, but prosecution objects.  The question is appealed.
September 8, 1995 Appeals court rejects Ito's jury instruction.
September 11, 1995 Defense refuses to rest their case due to the unresolved question of judge's instruction to jury concerning Fuhrman.  Judge Ito orders prosecution to begin its rebuttal.
September 18, 1995 Prosecution conditionally rests its case.
September 19, 1995 Detective Vannatter is cross-examined by Shapiro on statements he made to mob informants about why police went to O.J. Simpson's residence.
September 21, 1995 Both defense and prosecution rest their cases.  In a statement to judge waiving his right to testify, Simpson says "I did not, could not, and would not have committed this crime."  Judge Ito gives jury instructions.
Sept. 26 & 27, 1995  Clark and Darden deliver prosecution's closing arguments.
Sept. 27 & 28, 1995 Cochran and Scheck deliver defense's closing arguments.  Cochran makes controversial statements to the jury comparing Fuhrman to Hitler.
September 29, 1995 The case goes to the jury.
October 2, 1995 After less than four hours, jury announces that it has reached a verdict.
October 3, 1995 Jury finds O.J. Simpson not guilty of two counts of murder.
October 23, 1996 Opening statements in civil trial.  Jury consists of nine whites, one black, one Hispanic, and one person of mixed Asian and African ancestry.
November 22, 1996 Simpson testifies before a jury for the first time.  He denies killing Goldman or his former wife, but cannot explain the physical evidence against him.
December 9, 1996 Fred Goldman, Ron's father, testifies.  Plaintiffs rest.
December 20, 1996 Simpson awarded custody of his children by an Orange County judge.
January 10, 1997 Simpson on the stand again.
January 16, 1997 Both sides rest.  Jury has heard 101 witnesses over 41 days of testimony.
January 21, 1997 Closing argument of Daniel Petrocelli for the plaintiffs.  Petrocelli points at Simpson and says, "There's a killer in this courtroom."
January 22, 1997 Closing argument by Robert Baker, representing Simpson.
February 4, 1997 Jury finds Simpson liable and awards plaintiffs $8.5 million in in compensatory damages.
March 26, 1997 Court orders Simpson to turn over his assets, including 1968 Heisman trophy, a Warhol painting, and his golf clubs.
July 14, 1997 The Brentwood estate is auctioned off (and the new owner soon demolishes it).
June 30, 1998 Simpson's attorneys appeal wrongful death award against him, calling award "excessive and the clear result of passion and prejudice on the part of the jury."
November 2, 1998 Brown and Goldman families split proceeds from an auction of O. J. Simpson's belongings.
May 10, 1999 O. J. Simpson and the Browns negotiate a custody arrangement for the two Simpson children.
September 2007
A court seizes the book "If I Did It" by O. J. Simpson.  The book, renamed "If I Did It: Confessions of the Killer" is published with proceeds used to pay off Simpson's civil claim.
October 3, 2008 O. J. Simpson is convicted of assault, kidnapping, and armed robbery in connection with his attempt to recover sports memorabilia (which Simpson claimed was his) from a Las Vegas hotel room. Simpson is sentenced to 33 years in prison.
March 4, 2016 The LAPD announces they have a knife in their possession which was recovered from Simpson's Brentwood home.  There is a suggestion that the knife found is the murder weapon, but it proves to be unconnected to the case.

       Simpson Trial Homepage