The Cincinnati Enquirer from Cincinnati, Ohio on January 26, 1995 · Page 11
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The Cincinnati Enquirer from Cincinnati, Ohio · Page 11

Cincinnati, Ohio
Issue Date:
Thursday, January 26, 1995
Page 11
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A12 Thursday, January 26, 1995 Wli FROM PAGE A1 The Cincinnati Enquirer Defense: Blood drops key point CONTINUED FROM PAGE Al on June 12. Simpson has pleaded not guilty to the charges. "The evidence in this case, we believe, will show that O.J. Simpson is an innocent man wrongfully accused," Cochran said in a speech that quoted Martin Luther King Jr, Abraham Lincoln and Cicero. "This case is about a rush to judgment, an obsession to win at any cost and by any means necessary." Defense strategy Cochran's address to the jury, widely praised by legal experts as an effective debut of the defense case, marked the first time that the Simpson team has outlined its evidence in court. Many of the details were previously unknown. As Cochran presented the outlines of the defense case, prosecutors interrupted again and again, charging that their counterpart was engaging in argument, not merely previewing the evidence, as is required in opening statements. At the conclusion of the hearing, prosecutors erupted in anger as they were presented with statements from more than a dozen defense witnesses never before disclosed to the prosecution even though some had been interviewed months ago. Deputy District Attorney William Hodgman accused Simpson's lawyers of deliberately hiding evidence from the prosecution and only unveiling it in the midst of opening statements, after prosecutors already had delivered their initial comments to the jury. "I don't think in the history of jurisprudence have we ever had anything occurring like what happened today in this courtroom," Hodgman said. Carl Douglas, one of Simpson's lawyers, acknowledged the mistakes and took responsibility for them, but said no bad faith was intended. "Both sides have made mistakes," he said. "We are human." Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Lance A. Ito took the issue of the late disclosures under submission and asked prosecutors to report to him today on what remedy they would request. That issue was argued outside the presence of the jury, but while the panelists were present, Cochran held the floor, and he appeared unfazed by the frequent prosecution interruptions. As he spoke, he publicly signaled for the first time how defense attorneys expect to undercut the prosecution's theory of how and when the crimes were committed. New evidence The defense case, Cochran said, will rest on the testimony of nationally known experts and on a number of witnesses who have received little public notice up until now. According to Cochran: Nicole Brown Simpson had Type B blood under her fingernails and on her thigh. Neither she nor Goldman nor Simpson had that blood type. A row of blood drops across her back was never tested, Cochran added. Only traces of blood were recovered from Simpson's Ford Bronco, far less than would be expected if Simpson had committed the crimes which Cochran said experts will testify would have drenched the assailant in blood and then fled the scene in his car. One couple will testify that they walked by Nicole Brown Simpson's condominium at 10:25 p.m., about 10 minutes after prosecutors believe the murders were committed, and yet saw no bodies on the walkway. Another witness, identified in court as Marianne Gerchas, will testify that she saw four men two Hispanic and two Caucasian rushing away from the scene of the crime at about the time it was committed, but that police never took a statement from her. The men appeared to be in a hurry and at least some were wearing knit caps, Cochran said. A blue knit cap was found at the crime scene. Another witness, Rosa Lopez, will say that she saw Simpson's Ford Bronco parked outside his house when prosecutors believe he was at his ex-wife's house killing her and Goldman. If true, that would strongly bolster Simpson's alibi that he was home asleep at the time of the slayings. The defense opening statement went to lengths to undercut what prosecutors maintain was the motive for the murders: Simpson was a jealous husband who harassed and stalked Nicole Brown Simpson. Cochran conceded that a 1989 domestic abuse incident was an ugly one, but he stressed that Simpson had apologized in letters to his wife. According to Cochran, there is no evidence that Simpson ever hit his wife after that time. Cochrsn will finish his opening statement today. '! UC researcher key to blood tests in Simpson case BY ANNE MICHAUD The Cincinnati Enquirer O.J. Simpson's fate may hinge on the little-known work of a University of Cincinnati microbiologist. John Trela, a UC researcher and associate professor, discovered the enzyme used to identify the DNA of hair and blood samples in the Simpson case. But Trela, who died in 1991, did not reap the benefits of his discovery. A private company patented the enzyme. UC and a rival firm are replicating Trela's research to awaken the scientific community to Trela's contribution, and to challenge the patent-holder's lock on the enzyme. "We have an interest in seeing that John Trela's work gets recognized," said Diane Rein, a UC researcher. The enzyme that Trela purified, Taq polymerase, is the basis for a process called polymerase chain reaction (PCR). PCR is used for forensics, as in the Simpson case, in paternity testing and in several other applications. Worldwide sales of Taq polymerase reached nearly $50 million last year, said Randall Dimond, chief technical officer for Promega Corp. of Madison, Wis., a company that sells the enzyme. John Trela's daughter, Kristen Trela of Walnut Hills, said she doesn't care about the money as much as the recognition. "I'm sitting here watching the O.J. Simpson trial and thinking, 'My dad would love to be watching this,' " she said Wednesday. Trela, who lived in College Hill, was working on polymerase research when he died at age 49 after a short illness. He and two graduate students first purified the enzyme in the mid-1970s. They published their research in 1976. More than a decade later, a now-defunct company, Cetus Corp., won a patent on an enzyme that it apparently thought was different from Trela's. But Trela recognized his work in Ce-tus's "discovery." "John Trela . . . was convinced they were the same enzyme," said Ralph Meyer, a UC biochemist who is working on the replication of Trela's experiments. Cetus sold the patent in 1991 to the Swiss pharmaceutical giant Hoffman-LaRoche for more than $300 million. A patent infringement lawsuit brought by that company against Promega is bringing Trela's contribution to light. "One of our defenses is that Cetus and John Trela had been purifying the same enzyme," said Promega's Dimond. L-y WLajd CJ fyj A j J j j tU) A s fa LShJl V Hotel Motel Olympus Camille Hurry! When They're Gone, "ST ReStmaker Marvelous Middle Marvelous Middle Marvelous Middle f5y Th;j,re0" sw -s59 .stss h'.INMwEr i vc s sr-ttp &p &-5pp SeenB.9.134,95PP "lSS Sr'V '1799 KingReg $lM995 pp ffimrtSrffn- "8 Reg. ,1799.95 $000 lf& i , M , S.r.r.MiiM. 'Tl -T- - ii.iu'T. j'm'ii ' ' C i I M IT'l) g, Q J UlLuXQfi ft-i-w ;v - Tu ' T- 1 1 i r i n i 1 '.'. . , Matching Rocker I t J 1 1 '! "Si lH sJL . c HURRY, 4$. , V aVaV wjfi?6l Mrhi i rjjt Quantities !ggm& I V " &&2J QU&SJ CZkt&J Yj. r ism ylWl zzzzz? iim Kt:i) B.t.vA ki. ih,i S27-6S00 in4i rmscETos rn. mi CHIJMAIN AVH. id.r(Ki f..r'.i 3SS-5X66 STORE HOURS: MON.-SAT. 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