Thursday, January 21, 2010

Was OJ the killer?

In 1994, Nicole Brown Simpson was found murdered, together with a male companion. Her ex-husband, the famous footballer O. J. Simpson, was suspected to have committed the murder.

His defense lawyer, the famous lawyer Derschowitz reasoned this way: 4 million women are battered each year by husbands and boyfriends in the USA. Yet in 1992, only 1,432, or 1 in 2,500, were killed by their husbands and boyfriends. Hence few men who slap or beat their domestic partners go on to murder them. In the end, O. J. Simpson was found not guilty. [statistics A]

However, of all the battered women murdered in the USA in 1993, 90 percent were killed by the abuser. [statistics B]

I read about the O. J. Simpson case and statistics A a long time ago. But I read statistics B in The Drunkard’s Walk only recently.

The probability that a abusing man will kill the abused woman (not too high) and the probability that a murdered woman is killed by the abusing man (almost a certainty) are vastly different things. Sadly, people often confuse the two.


Anonymous said...

The evidence against OJ was astounding and enough to convict ten men.The murder trial was a joke. More evidence was allowed in the civil case.
The findings on these abuse/murder cases are confusing because most abused women do not report the abuse. When a woman is murdered the first person the police look at is the spouse, therefore, the statistics, in my opinion are misleading.

StephenC said...

I agree with you mostly but have some reservations on the last point. The police may suspect the spouse. Ultimately the case must be decided in the court. I believe the statistics refer to the court data.