The killing this week of Nipsey Hussle, a rapper and advocate for the communities of South Los Angeles, despatched a painful tremor all through these neighborhoods and the music business.
Now the man charged in his loss of life, Eric Holder, is being represented by one other Los Angeles determine: Christopher Darden, who grew to become a family identify when he helped prosecute — unsuccessfully — O.J. Simpson in 1995 for the deaths of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald L. Goldman.
Here’s a take a look at Mr. Darden, the man who famously requested Mr. Simpson to strive on the bloody glove.
What has Mr. Darden been doing since the Simpson trial?
After leaving the district legal professional’s workplace, Mr. Darden labored as a legislation professor, and was a co-writer on a number of authorized thrillers in addition to “In Contempt,” a behind-the-scenes account of the Simpson case that The New York Times known as “powerful and affecting.”
The Times’s evaluation famous the private penalties that Mr. Darden stated he suffered as Mr. Simpson’s lead lawyer, Johnnie L. Cochran Jr., manipulated the problem of race throughout the trial: “The defense lawyer’s suggestion that Mr. Darden was a token black recruited by the prosecution team for the color of his skin led to accusations, on the street, that he was ‘an Uncle Tom, a sellout, a house Negro,’ Mr. Darden says. He writes that he received death threats and was spat upon, and that his family, too, was harassed.”
Mr. Darden additionally grew to become a protection lawyer and labored as a commentator on authorized circumstances for plenty of tv networks.
Is it frequent for prosecutors to change into protection attorneys?
Yes. Many legislation college graduates favor beginning their careers as prosecutors. It pays lower than a few of them might make in non-public follow, but it surely supplies invaluable courtroom expertise early in their careers, whereas their extra extremely paid legislation college classmates who take non-public jobs spend their time on authorized analysis and serving to extra seasoned attorneys put together circumstances.
Prosecution work additionally teaches them the ins-and-outs of plea bargaining and negotiations between attorneys, which is how the overwhelming majority of legal circumstances are resolved. So once they dangle a shingle to change into a protection lawyer, they will instantly draw on years of expertise as prosecutors.
Many of the legal protection attorneys in any county seat are usually former prosecutors, whereas the greatest non-public attorneys who deal with white-collar litigation and different costly specialties typically have been as soon as federal prosecutors. (Earlier in his profession, Mr. Cochran had been a prosecutor in the Los Angeles County district legal professional’s workplace.)
Did he miscalculate by asking Mr. Simpson to strive on the bloody glove?
It’s the most remembered second of the Simpson trial, which prompted Mr. Cochran’s well-known exhortation: “If it doesn’t fit, you must acquit.”
Mr. Darden addressed the influence of that pivotal second, and his resolution to ask Mr. Simpson to strive on the glove, throughout a Reddit “Ask Me Anything” session in 2017.
“Quite honestly, I did not appreciate at the time the impact that little ditty had on the jurors,” Mr. Darden wrote. “I thought it was a kids’ rhyme for idiots, to be honest, but it was effective.”
He added: “I take responsibility for the glove issues, so if there is any blame or fault to be assessed, it fell on me. And it should be assessed to me, because I’m the only one strong enough to carry that burden.”
He said he felt it was clear that Mr. Simpson did what he could to avoid making the glove fit. “I hoped the jury would recognize that, but they couldn’t see it, because they didn’t want to see it,” he said.
What has been the reaction to Mr. Darden representing Mr. Holder?
Some have been critical of Mr. Darden, 62, for taking on the defense of a man charged with killing a beloved figure in his community. But as Mr. Darden made plain in his book, he has endured such criticism before, including being called a traitor for helping to prosecute Mr. Simpson.
Yet many lawyers hold strongly to the concept that everyone is entitled to a defense. In fact, Mr. Darden has said that if he had been a criminal defense lawyer at the time, he would not have had a problem defending Mr. Simpson.
Mr. Darden has said that, as a young man, he grew interested in becoming a lawyer from watching trials involving civil rights leaders.
“I knew how important the law was to the black community, and I admired those lawyers who took those cases, and I wanted to be one of them,” he said on Reddit.