In last week’s episode, viewers were introduced to the character of Jeffrey Toobin, whose game-changing article in The New Yorker uncovered allegations of racism in former LAPD Det. Mark Fuhrman’s past.
“Extra’s” AJ Calloway sat down with the real Jeffrey Toobin, who wrote the book on which the hit miniseries is based.
Toobin, who was involved with the series from the very beginning, is not one bit surprised by the show’s success. “I hoped it would be this big, but when I was on the set and I saw the quality of the production and the kind of stars who were involved, I thought, ‘This thing is gonna be huge.'”
The show is certainly huge, reaching as many as 12 million viewers. He said, “A lot of people thought, ‘Oh, people know everything about O.J.,’ and, ‘People are sick of O.J.,' and I knew that would not be the case, and I think this series has proved it completely.”
Toobin’s 1994 article about the O.J. Simpson trial has been credited with changing the course of the case. Toobin reflected on how he knew he had gotten a major scoop. “I had the advantage of having spent some time in Los Angeles, and I knew more than most people about the history of the Los Angeles Police Department, so I knew the possibility was there for racial trouble because the history of the LAPD was so troubled. Thus, my story put the O.J. case into that world and that I knew would be a big deal."
The article was a huge deal, since many questioned whether Mark Fuhrman could have actually planted evidence, something Jeffrey does not believe. “I don't think it could have happened. I don't think he had the opportunity, but he had the background where the jury might well have believed it.”
In the end of the trial, the jury ultimately acquitted Simpson. Of the verdict, Toobin said, “I thought it was a miscarriage of justice.”
Toobin elaborated, “I watched the evidence unfold. I think, you know, when someone writes a suicide note and appears to be fleeing, you know you can say that's evidence that perhaps... you know that suggests they're guilty, but, you know, I watched the whole trial unfold and that's… that's where I got my conclusion that I think he's guilty.”
Nowadays, Simpson is serving time in a Nevada prison for an armed robbery and kidnapping conviction. Speaking out on Simpson’s fate, Toobin commented, “Well, I thought it was sort of the perfect absurdity of this whole case, because in my opinion, he got acquitted of the crime he was guilty of and he got convicted of a crime he was innocent of.”