Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Glen Rogers, the Cross-Country Killer

Was O.J. Innocent?

Nicole Brown Simpson
Nicole Brown Simpson

It was a horrendous double murder at 875 Bundy Drive, and the culprit seemed obvious.  On June 12, 1994, Nicole Brown Simpson, former wife of former football celebrity O. J. Simpson, was stabbed to death by an assailant on the front walk of her luxury condo.  The killer also slaughtered Ronald Goldman, 25, who had brought Nicole the eyeglasses that her mother had left behind at the restaurant where he waited tables.

Ronald Goldman
Ronald Goldman

Detectives, reportedly concerned about Simpson's safety, went to his estate and noticed a bloodstain on the door of his white Ford Bronco and on the driveway, but Simpson proved to be out of town, in Chicago. When he returned to Los Angeles to answer questions, investigators saw a cut on the finger of his left hand, and they learned he'd still been in town at the time of the assault. He told several conflicting stories, raising their suspicions.

O.J. Simpson
O.J. Simpson

Several droplets of blood at the scene failed to show a match with the victims' blood types.  Simpson's blood was drawn for comparison and it showed strong similarities with those unknown droplets.  In addition, they were located near footprints made by a rare and expensive type of shoe—shoes that O. J. owned and that proved to be his size. 

There were other items of evidence against him as well, not the least of which was his "suicide drive" down the highway, complete with a passport and thousands of dollars.  Circumstances and some of the best possible evidence were against him.  Nevertheless, the defense team managed to refocus the jury's attention on corruption in the Los Angeles Police Department, rampant racism from the lead detective, ands the possibility that evidence had been planted to frame Simpson.  His experts also showed that the crime lab had mishandled evidence, placing everything into doubt. 

The jury briefly deliberated and then acquitted Simpson.  He vowed to search for Nicole's killer, and as a matter of fact, another possible suspect did emerge not long afterward.  He was angry, brutal, and quite vicious in the random murders he committed, and he always targeted beautiful women.  He started in California, at least from what was known at the time.  O.J. Simpson's trial was still in process when Glen Rogers became a murder suspect in a different incident not far away.

The primary sources for this story are two books, Clifford Linedecker's "Smooth Operator" and a book told to Joyce Spizer by Rogers' brother, Claude Rogers, Jr., "The Cross Country Killer."  In addition, several major newspapers carried it.  Often, the details conflict, but what follows is the essence of Rogers' activities.

 

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