Marcia Clark spoke with Dateline NBC on Sunday night about the O.J. Simpson trial drama that made her a household name, in an interview where she called the not-guilty verdict “physically painful.”
The former L.A. County prosecutor was part of several sit-downs with people involved in the trial, with FX’s series The People vs. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story renewing interest in the O.J. story. (A knife recently found at Simpson’s old estate has added further fuel).
Clark says she struggled with her emotions throughout the trial, and often felt defeated. From The Hollywood Reporter:
She recalled seeing Simpson fans standing at the side of the road cheering during the infamous white Bronco police chase. “I thought, ‘Oh my god, this is not good. … He has murdered two innocent people, slaughtered them, and you’re cheering his escape?’ It gave me a full view of what we were up against.”
She added, “I had so many days going to the office feeling like, ‘We’re toast; it’s over,’ because I remember watching the jury every single day. Throughout the trial, it felt like one minefield after another. Every day we’d walk into court, and something else was blowing up.”
Additionally, Clark talked about the defense’s possible use of Nicole Simpson’s friend Kris Jenner as a witness. Clark said the prosecution refrained from having Jenner testify about her own fear of Simpson because it was all “hearsay.” “I couldn’t put it in. [But] I would have been happy to put her on the stand; she would have been a great witness,” says Clark.
Watch part of the interview below.
Clark also recalled her reaction to the prosecution’s seeming failures—i.e. having O.J. try on the glove. She said, “I was tired. I was demoralized. By the time I actually got to talk to the jury, [it felt like] ‘Are you hearing anything? I don’t know.’ It just didn’t feel like anybody cared.”
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Image screengrab via NBC