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The Guardian - US
The Guardian - US
Sam Levine and agency

Ronald Goldman’s family says there is no closure from OJ Simpson’s death

A family hugs and cries in a courtroom.
Fred Goldman hugs his wife, Patti, as his daughter, Kim, reacts to the not-guilty verdicts in OJ Simpson’s double-murder trial on 3 October 1995. Photograph: Myung J Chun/AP

OJ Simpson’s death did not bring closure to the family of Ronald Goldman, who was killed alongside Simpson’s ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson in Los Angeles in 1994.

“The only thing that is important today are the victims, and it’s just a reminder for myself and my family that Ron has been gone all these years – and that we continue to miss him, all these years,” Fred Goldman, Ron’s father, told the Daily Beast. He also said “there’s no such thing” as closure for him.

While Simpson was acquitted of the double murder in 1995, he was later found liable for the murders in a civil trial and ordered to pay $33.5m. Goldman’s family still hold him responsible for the killings.

In a statement, Goldman and his daughter Kim said Simpson’s death from prostate cancer at age 76 meant “the hope for true accountability has ended”.

“The news of Ron’s killer passing away is a mixed bag of complicated emotions and reminds us that the journey through grief is not linear,” they said. “The money is not the issue, it never has been,” Fred Goldman said. “It’s making certain that one man, the man who murdered my son and Nicole, is held responsible by a court of law.”

Gloria Allred, who represented Brown’s family during the murder trial, also said she “doesn’t mourn” Simpson’s death.

“I feel that the system failed Nicole Brown Simpson and failed battered women everywhere,” she said on an ABC News telecast in New York. “In the civil case which followed, he was found liable, responsible for her wrongful death. So, it’s fair to call him a killer. In any event, I don’t mourn for OJ Simpson. I do mourn for Nicole Brown Simpson and her family. They should be remembered. The system failed.”

Simpson’s death could make it somewhat easier for their families to collect on the judgment, since the administrator of an estate may be more willing to pay out debts than the original debt-holder was, according to the Associated Press.

Simpson avoided paying on the judgment by declaring bankruptcy and moving to Florida. The Goldman family accused him of “living the high life”. David Cook, an attorney for the Goldmans, has vowed to collect the debt, with interest. It’s not yet clear what Simpson’s assets were.

“He died without penance. We don’t know what he has, where it is or who is in control. We will pick up where we are and keep going with it,” Cook said in a statement.

The probate process generally takes place in the state where someone dies. In Simpson’s case that would be Nevada, though there could also be cases in California and Florida, where he also lived.

In California, the Brown and Goldman families could get priority over other creditors because they have a secured debt.

Goldman said the family’s motivation was “making certain that one man, the man who murdered my son and Nicole, is held responsible by a court of law”.

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