O. J. Simpson is an American former football running back, broadcaster, actor, advertising spokesman, and convicted felon.
Once a popular figure with the U.S. public, he is best known for being tried for the murders of his former wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend, Ron Goldman.
Simpson was acquitted of the murders in criminal court, but was later found responsible for both deaths in a civil trial.
- Full name: Orenthal James Simpson, nicknamed “the Juice”,
- Profession: American football running back
- Born: 9 July 1947 (age 72 years), San Francisco, California, United States
- Height: 1.85 m
- Children: Sydney Brooke Simpson, Justin Ryan Simpson, Jason Simpson, Arnelle Simpson, Aaren Simpson
- Spouse: Nicole Brown Simpson (m. 1985–1992), Marguerite Whitley (m. 1967–1979)
- Books: I Want to Tell You: My Response to Your Letters, Your Messages, Your Questions
About O. J. Simpson
Simpson was born on 9 July 1947 in San Francisco, California, United States. Simpson is a son of Eunice (née Durden), a hospital administrator, and Jimmy Lee Simpson, a chef and bank custodian.
His father was a well-known drag queen in the San Francisco Bay Area. Later in life, Jimmy Simpson announced that he was gay and died of AIDS in 1986.
Simpson’s maternal grandparents were from Louisiana, and his aunt gave him the name Orenthal, which she said was the name of a French actor she liked.
Simpson has one brother, Melvin Leon “Truman” Simpson, one living sister, Shirley Simpson-Baker, and one deceased sister, Carmelita Simpson-Durio.
As a child, Simpson developed rickets and wore braces on his legs until the age of five, giving him his bowlegged stance. His parents separated in 1952, and Simpson was raised by his mother.
Simpson grew up in San Francisco and lived with his family in the housing projects of the Potrero Hill neighbourhood.
In his early teenage years, he joined a street gang called the Persian Warriors and was briefly incarcerated at the San Francisco Youth Guidance Center.
Future wife Marquerite, his childhood sweetheart, described Simpson as “really an awful person then”; after his third arrest, a meeting with Willie Mays during which the baseball star encouraged Simpson to avoid trouble helped persuade him to reform.
At Galileo High School (currently Galileo Academy of Science and Technology) in San Francisco, Simpson played for the school football team, the Galileo Lions.
Simpson attended the University of Southern California (USC), where he played football for the USC Trojans and won the Heisman Trophy in 1968.
He played professionally as a running back in the National Football League (NFL) for 11 seasons, primarily with the Buffalo Bills from 1969 to 1977.
He also played for the San Francisco 49ers from 1978 to 1979. In 1973, he became the first NFL player to rush for more than 2,000 yards in a season.
He holds the record for the single season yards-per-game average, which stands at 143.1. He was the only player to ever rush for over 2,000 yards in the 14-game regular season NFL format.
Simpson was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1983 and the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1985. After retiring from football, he began new careers in acting and football broadcasting.
In 1994, Simpson was arrested and charged with the murders of his ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend, Ron Goldman.
He was acquitted by a jury after a lengthy and internationally publicized trial. The families of the victims subsequently filed a civil suit against him.
A civil court awarded a $33.5 million judgment against him in 1997 for the victims’ wrongful deaths. In 2000, he moved to Florida to avoid paying any more of the liability judgment and settled in Miami.
In 2007, Simpson was arrested in Las Vegas, Nevada and charged with the felonies of armed robbery and kidnapping.
In 2008, he was convicted and sentenced to 33 years’ imprisonment, with a minimum of nine years without parole.
He served his sentence at the Lovelock Correctional Center near Lovelock, Nevada. Simpson was granted parole on July 20, 2017. He was eligible for release from prison on October 1, 2017, and was released on that date.