Twenty years after Nicole Brown Simpson and a friend were stabbed to death and football star O.J. Simpson was later acquitted of murder charges, one victim’s sister told KTLA that she welcomed Simpson’s recent prison sentence while another said she battled depression following the brutal slayings.
Simpson’s ex-wife, Brown, and her friend Ronald Goldman were killed on June 12, 1994. Although Simpson was acquitted of murder charges, controversy surrounded the trial and many family members continued to believe he was guilty.
“The truth is, I have appropriate anger toward the person who stabbed my brother to death and nearly decapitated another human being and was walking free for almost two decades,” Goldman’s sister Kim Goldman told KTLA.
Kim Goldman and Brown’s sister, Tanya Brown, believed Simpson killed their siblings, and recently published books about how the crime impacted them.
Tanya Brown battled depression following Nicole’s death and Simpson’s acquittal and believed her sister was a victim of domestic violence.
“People don’t get that this was a person I’ve known since I was 7 years old,” she said of Simpson. “This was not a stranger in my life. So that’s what made it really hard and surreal for me to really wrap my brain around somebody that could do this.”
In “Finding Peace Amid the Chaos: My Escape From Depression and Suicide,” Tanya Brown wrote about her efforts to forgive Simpson and help other victims of domestic violence.
“If you’re in a violent relationship you could be the next Nicole,” Tanya Brown said.
The Brown family established the non-profit organization The Nicole Brown Charitable Foundation in 1994 to help other domestic violence victims.
For Kim Goldman, relief did not come until Simpson was convicted of kidnapping and armed robbery in 2008 and jailed at the Lovelock Correctional Center.
“I wish it was for the crime he committed against Ron and Nicole, but we as a society and legal system told him that he was larger than life, that he’s bigger than the system … I like that he is kind of knocked down a couple pegs,” Kim Goldman said.
Kim Goldman shook and cried in the courtroom when Simpson was acquitted in 1995, video showed. In her book, “Can’t Forgive: My 20 Year Battle With O.J. Simpson,” she recalled seeing Simpson walk in front of her car shortly after the trial.
“I started to white knuckle the steering wheel and I started to rev the engine thinking I could run him over and nobody would ever know, and then reality set in and my conscious rose to the surface,” she told KTLA.
After Simpson was imprisoned, Kim Goldman happily sent him a greeting card that welcomed him to his new home, she said.
KTLA’s Eric Spillman contributed to this report.