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O.J. Simpson dead from cancer at age 76, family says

Nearly three decades after being a defendant in a double murder trial, O.J. Simpson has died at age 76.
O.J. Simpson dead from cancer at age 76, family says
Posted at 10:50 AM, Apr 11, 2024

O.J. Simpson, a football star who would later be a defendant in arguably the biggest murder trial in U.S. history, has died at the age of 76, according to a post on his X account. 

"On April 10th, our father, Orenthal James Simpson, succumbed to his battle with cancer," the post reads. "He was surrounded by his children and grandchildren. During this time of transition, his family asks that you please respect their wishes for privacy and grace. The Simpson Family." 

In February, Simpson denied reports that he was in hospice care as he was reportedly quietly battling prostate cancer. WPLG-TV had reported that Simpson was undergoing chemotherapy. 

His last post on X came on Feb. 11 when he predicted that San Francisco would beat Kansas City in the Super Bowl.

Simpson rose to fame in the late 1960s because of his skills on the football field, and he captured the attention of the nation again after the murder of his ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ronald Goldman in 1994.

Simpson was charged with their murder in June 1994, days after the two were found dead. Simpson's friend Al Cowlings was behind the wheel of a white Ford Bronco carrying Simpson that led police on a slow-speed chase back to Simpson's residence, where he was subsequently arrested. 

The trial would last for about a year, concluding with Simpson's acquittal in October 1996. 

Although Simpson was found not guilty in the criminal trial, he was later found liable for the deaths in a civil trial.  

In the years to follow, Simpson found himself in more legal trouble. He was convicted in 2008 for an armed robbery in Las Vegas. Prosecutors said Simpson was among a group of people who broke into a hotel room and stole memorabilia at gunpoint. According to The Associated Press reports, Simpson claimed that he was taking back memorabilia stolen from him.

He was sentenced to 33 years in prison but was released in 2017 after being granted parole.

Before his infamous legal issues, Simpson was one of football's most recognizable faces, even well after his retirement. His popularity soared in 1967 and 1968 when he led USC to back-to-back Rose Bowls and won the 1968 Heisman Trophy. 

He was then drafted by the Buffalo Bills in 1969, where he spent nine seasons. Simpson was a five-time Pro Bowler while in Buffalo and won the league's MVP award in 1973. 

Simpson spent his final two years in the NFL as a member of the 49ers. 

Meanwhile, Simpson's Hollywood profile also rose. He appeared in dozens of films, with his most notable role as Detective Nordberg in the "Naked Gun" films. 

The Pro Football Hall of Fame reacted to Simpson's death. 

“O.J. Simpson was the first player to reach a rushing mark many thought could not be attained in a 14-game season when he topped 2,000 yards,” said Hall of Fame President Jim Porter. “His on-field contributions will be preserved in the Hall’s archives in Canton, Ohio.”

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