Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Simpson's Defense Team Urges Probe of Alleged Police Perjury

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Simpson's Defense Team Urges Probe of Alleged Police Perjury

Article excerpt

In a flurry of motions filed Tuesday, O.J. Simpson's lawyers sought appointment of a special prosecutor to investigate possible police perjury in Simpson's murder trial as well as limits on prosecution plans to portray a star defense witness as a drug-using womanizer.

Most of the day's developments happened away from the jury, including testimony from Simpson's friend, Gretchen Stockdale. She confirmed Simpson left her a phone message a few hours before the June 12, 1994, murders of Nicole Simpson and Nicole's friend Ronald Goldman. Simpson is charged in the slayings.

Prosecutors want the tape recording of the message in which Simpson reportedly says, "Hey, Gretchen, sweetheart, it's Orenthal James, who is finally at a place in his life where he is like, totally, totally, unattached with everybody. Ha haaaah!"

Stockdale, a former Los Angeles Raiders cheerleader and lingerie model, said she met Simpson in 1988 and they became friends. She said they ran into each other at social events and she consulted him about a business investment.

Prosecutor Marcia Clark tried to quiz Stockdale whether her relationship with Simpson was intimate, but the judge cut off such questioning.

Stockdale said she turned over the voice mail tape of Simpson's message to a defense investigator last year and kept an extra copy on her own tape recorder. But she said she later taped over that copy because "it was no longer of any importance to me."

Superior Court Judge Lance Ito ordered Clark to have her investigators contact Stockdale's answering service to determine whether they kept a copy of the message.

Sequestered jurors were sent to their hotel after only two hours of testimony while Ito considered a plethora of legal issues before him, and another judge briefly took over Ito's bench. Testimony wasn't expected to resume until this afternoon at the earliest. …

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