CNN O.J. Simpson Trial

jury graphic

Jurors say evidence made the case for Simpson

One rests easy with her decision, one may not, but all happy to be free

October 4, 1995
Web posted at: 11:05 a.m. EDT


LOS ANGELES (CNN) -- Jurors in the Simpson case, like O.J. himself, probably felt like they had been released from some hard time Tuesday. After long months of sequestration, they were happy to go home. And with their vow of silence removed, some are saying they had plenty of reasonable doubt to justify their verdict.

"I'm happy. I can sleep tonight," said Brenda Moran, one of the more forthcoming jurors. "I know we made the right decision, and we did weigh the evidence (more from Moran - 196K AIFF sound or 196K WAV sound)."

Moran, a 45-year-old computer technician, told CNN she respected the lawyers on both sides of the case. "I think both sides did a great job," she said. "It's just that someone has to lose, someone has to win."

Asked about the speedy verdict, Moran said the jurors had plenty of time to weigh the facts. "You sit there for nine months. You heard evidence, so that's enough right there. You heard the evidence for nine months," she said.


Another juror, Lyonel Cryer, also cited evidence in the decision, specifically the botched handling of crucial material that could have convicted Simpson. "It was garbage in, garbage out," Cryer told the Los Angeles Times.

"There was a problem with what was being presented to prosecutors for testing from LAPD," Cryer maintained. "We felt there were a lot of opportunities for ... contamination of evidence, samples being mixed or stored together."

Ultimately, Cryer said, the shoddy lab work caused him to believe defense expert and renowned forensic pathologist Henry Lee, who had argued, "something is wrong."

Another juror blamed Mark Furhman's role in the case for her decision to acquit.

According to the juror's daughter, Denise, Anise Aschenback said she believed Simpson was indeed guilty. However, she contended "there wasn't enough evidence" because of concerns the defense raised that Fuhrman may have had a racist vendetta against Simpson.

Denise Aschenback said her mother cried as she explained her decision.


Although the defense may have very effectively used Furhman's racist remarks to discredit evidence found by him, former juror Tracy Hampton and Simpson's jury consultant, Jo-Ellan Dimitrius, both downplayed race as a deciding factor in the decision to clear Simpson (Dimitrius - 298K AIFF sound or 298K WAV sound).


"I don't really think that much of it was racial," Dimitrius told CNN's Larry King. "I mean, we had a jury that was comprised of (nine) African-Americans, two whites, and one Hispanic, and obviously in a very short period of time they came to a conclusion that kind of went across all racial bounds. I don't think that there was the focus on that, perhaps at least in the jury room, as was out there in the public."

Whatever the case, the jurors say they're glad to be off the case. Of her long months of sequestration, Moran said, "You would have to experience it to really know. It was really tough." She said there were "good and bad moments, being locked up."

Moran said she just wants to get back to normal, a feeling apparently shared by most of her fellow jurors.

Yolanda Cooley said of her mother, jury forewoman Armanda Cooley, "Her only interest right now is to rest and to regroup." Cooley, a 51-year-old accounting department worker, was accompanied by Los Angeles Police Department officers as she returned to her South Central neighborhood Tuesday.

In the West Adams district, former juror and retired cleaning woman Beatrice Wilson, 72, headed back to Independent Square, a complex for elderly and low-income people. "She was smiling. ... She was happy it was over," said George McQuade, a spokesman for the city housing authority, which oversees the complex. "She wanted to come home. She wanted to be with her husband."

And one juror made her own quick getaway. Gina Rhodes Rosborough, a 29-year-old postal worker, called her family and said she wouldn't be home for a couple of days. She had absconded with her husband, whom she married in September 1994 -- the month she began jury duty.

Tune in: Simpson juror Brenda Moran plans to hold a news conference at 3 p.m. EDT Wednesday. CNN will carry the event live.


Copyright © 1995 Cable News Network, Inc.