IAGO IN BRENTWOOD:
|IAGO IN BRENTWOOD:
How Mark Fuhrman got away with murder
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MY THESIS: O.J. didnt do it; Fuhrman did. The quantity of evidence against Simpson is an invalid substitute for the quality thats missing. The quality of blood, fiber, timeline, tampering and contamination evidence presented by the defense justified reasonable doubt. But the equation that follows from the uncertainty is unequivocal: If it wasnt O.J., it had to have been a man with a laundry list of rare mental, physical and psychological attributes, specialized training, well-placed friends, and inside knowledge of the victims, the accused, and the California criminal justice system. He had to have a leading role in the investigation, a compelling motive for the killing and the framing, as well as opportunities to do both. That man exists. His name is Mark Fuhrman.
MY METHODOLOGY: First, I gathered all of the data I could to draw a profile of the killer. His height, shoe size, and access to both crime scenes were givens. He had to have been able to dispose of some evidence that would have incriminated him, whoever he was, and leave behind evidence that appeared to incriminate only O.J. Simpson. When I thought I had enough facts to work with, I picked the most likely scenario and ran with it as long as additional facts supported it. No new discoveries made under close inspection adhered to the assumption that it was O.J. Even the dramatic photos of him wearing Bruno Maglis tell a dramatically different story when you learn more about them and the men who produced them late in the civil case.
If O.J. was framed, he had to have enough in common with the killer to look guilty to the uncritical eye, which he did. Only the killer would have it all. Fuhrman had it all, right down to the unusual way he walked-with the toes of his size 12 shoes pointed straight ahead, like the bloody shoeprints left by the killer on Bundy. The more I looked into the possibility that it could not have been Fuhrman, the more evidence I found that it could have been no one else.
MY MOTIVATION: In 1991, 1 began writing a novel set in a future America where history can be recorded on film retroactively. By 1997, when I was trying to finish the last book of what had become a trilogy, I hit a snag. All of the work Id done since the Bundy murders to get around the question of O.J.s guilt or innocence was becoming increasingly implausible. The men in my projection of the future who ran the American mass media the way Jefferson Davis would have run his, had to know whether O.J. was guilty or not. It had to make a difference in whether or not they told the truth about it. My problem was, I didnt know the truth myself.
The standard of proof set down in the civil trial had become the medias license to be openly contemptuous of anyone who expressed doubt of O.J.s guilt. It made it easier for them to forgive Fuhrmans sins and to be increasingly supportive of him as the celebrity he had always wanted to be. If he was the man I thought he was, the implications for African-American men to start with-were chilling. If I could see it coming, so could he. Here was a pattern for image assassination that anyone with his foresight could see, and anyone with his ruthlessness could follow. If this was the path of the future, my trilogy wasnt fiction; it was a sneak preview.
Most people who know my color assume they know my motive for accusing Fuhrman, an ex-Marine and Vietnam vet, of being a racist butcher of defenseless human beings. Those who know that my first nonfiction book was dedicated to Dennis Hammond, a Marine murdered in captivity by the Viet Cong, should know better. Ive spent decades of my life and tens of thousands of dollars to fight the "racist murderer" image of Vietnam vets which has been falsely applied to men like Dennis and me for 30 years. Few things are as important to me as changing that image, of getting the history books right, no matter how unpopular the verdict.
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