February 3, 1996
Web posted at: 9:30 p.m. EST
LOS ANGELES (CNN) -- O.J. Simpson denied physically harming his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and suggested her diary entries saying he did were part of a scheme aimed at voiding a prenuptial agreement, The Los Angeles Times reported Saturday.
Simpson made the denial under oath last month during his wrongful death civil deposition, according to transcripts of the proceeding printed by The Times.
In Simpson's criminal trial, Denise Brown gave emotional testimony that Simpson had abused her sister Nicole. Brown said Simpson threw his wife against a wall during an argument at their home.
Prosecutors in the murder trial showed photos of a bruised Nicole Brown Simpson and played tape of a 911 call she made in which Simpson could be heard yelling in the background.
In the deposition, when Goldman family lawyer Daniel Petrocelli asked Simpson if he ever hit his wife with his fists, slapped her, or choked her. Simpson answered, "Never."
"And if Nicole said you did those things to her, she would not be telling the truth?" Petrocelli asked.
"The answer is yes," Simpson replied. "That's correct."
Petrocelli asked Simpson what he thought Nicole Brown Simpson's motive would be for fabricating the journal notes.
"Because she wanted me to tear up my prenuptial agreement and I gather her lawyers and her came up with that as a scheme," Simpson answered.
Several questions later, Petrocelli followed up on Simpson's theory. "But in carrying out this fraud, you believe that she went so far as to write down on paper a number of incidents that you believe she made up out of whole cloth?" he asked.
"Yes," Simpson replied.
Simpson suggested that bruises seen in photographs of his ex-wife's face were caused by his defending himself when she attacked him or by her habit of "picking" at her facial blemishes, the newspaper report said.
Simpson also reportedly gave his account of how he cut his hand. During the criminal trial, prosecutors speculated the cut came from a knife used at the crime scene, while his criminal defense team said Simpson cut himself by breaking a water glass in a Chicago hotel room.
In the deposition, the Los Angeles Times reports that Simpson says that he cut his hand picking up a piece of the broken glass in the hotel, but does not remember how it got broken.
"Clearly, O.J. differs rather dramatically in terms of his version of events that take place as compared to, say, Allan Park the limo driver," said Professor Stan Goldman of Loyola University Law School.
Limo driver Park testified that Simpson didn't answer the gate buzzer when the driver first arrived the night of the killings.
In deposition transcripts published in The Times, Simpson says that Park's statement is "absolutely not" true.
Petrocelli asks "And you, in fact, had not been sleeping, correct?"
"True," Simpson replied.
The deposition was taken as part of the discovery process in the wrongful death lawsuit filed against Simpson by relatives of Ron Goldman and Nicole Brown Simpson, who were found brutally stabbed to death outside Ms. Simpson's home on June 13, 1994.
Simpson was acquitted of the murders in October.
Under California law, once the deposition is completed, Simpson has one month to review the 1,534-page transcript and amend or make changes to his responses.
The deposition was the first time Simpson has given sworn testimony about the murders of Ron Goldman and Nicole Brown Simpson.
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