All Articles Tagged "Murder Trial"
It was inevitable that parallels would be drawn between the ongoing Oscar Pistorius drama and the O.J. Simpson trial, which hogged headlines the world over in the mid-1990s.
But there is one fundamental differences between the two cases that is, in my opinion, even more significant than the admittedly numerous similarities.
Yes, O.J. Simpson, a legendary all-American footballer, was a record-breaking star athlete who acquired iconic status in his country and beyond.
And so is Pistorius, a double amputee and Olympian whose courageous triumph over tragedy and unique achievements as a disabled sprinter have earned him acclaim internationally as well as in his native South Africa.
Yes, O.J. Simpson had a penchant for va-va-voom blondes. And so does Pistorius. Yes, both men went from hero to zero in eyes of legions of former fans when they were accused of slaughtering, in cold blood, women who played key roles in their lives – Nicole Brown, the mother of his children in Simpson’s case, Reeva Steenkamp, a current girlfriend in Pistorius’s.
Yes, both dramas sent shockwaves across the globe and were closely monitored by millions (more than half of America’s population watched the Simpson verdict on TV; and I don’t know anyone who has not taken a keen and almost ghoulish interest in the blow-by-blow details of Pistorius’s travails).
Yes, when Simpson was acquitted of killing Brown despite the existence of hard evidence that he was an unrepentant and brutal wife-beater, many people angrily expressed the view that he had received special treatment because of his celebrity status.
Ditto Pistorius when he made bail last week, even though he had the money, means and motive to flee if released, and despite widespread skepticism about his claim that he shot Steenkamp by accident, assuming she had been a burglar.
Read more on TheGrio.com.
There had been questions for a while about whether Jennifer Hudson would take the stand in her family’s murder case and today she was the first witness called to testify at the start of the trial.
William Balfour, 30, the estranged husband of Jennifer’s sister, Julia, is standing trial on first-degree murder charges for killing J Hud’s mother, Darnell Donerson, her brother Jason Hudson, and 7-year-old nephew Julian King back in October 2008. Today, she told the jury she knew William wasn’t right for her sister.
“I told her over and over again to not marry him,” Jennifer said. “We did not like how he treated her.”
Jennifer reportedly became overcome with emotion at one point and shed a few tears on the stand as she told the court how she “talked to her [mother] every single day,” and described the last time the family was all together.
“It was my mother, my brother, my sister and my dog,” she said, explaining that they had paid a surprise welcome visit to her home. “I was so surprised. The whole family is here.
“That was the last time I saw them,” she said, crying. “Thank God I had the opportunity.”
Jennifer’s fiancé David Otunga was in the courtroom along with other Hudson family members for moral support. So far, the trial for William, who has plead not guilty to the charges, is expected to last four weeks.
Brande Victorian is a blogger and culture writer in New York City. Follower her on Twitter at @be_vic.
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