A longtime friend of O.J. Simpson, exclaiming “I still love the guy” from the witness stand, testified Wednesday that the night after Nicole Brown Simpson was murdered the defendant confided he had dreams of killing her.
The witness, retired Los Angeles police officer Ronald Shipp, said Simpson invited him to the bedroom of his Rockingham estate that Monday night and, once away from family and friends gathered downstairs, asked how long it would take investigators to complete DNA blood tests.
Simpson also told Shipp that officers said they had found a bloody glove and a cap on his property, and Simpson asked what it all meant, according to Shipp’s testimony.
“He jokingly said, `To be honest, Shipp, I’ve had some dreams of killing her,”’ the witness testified.
For months, until Jan. 21, Shipp failed to tell prosecutors and defense attorneys about Simpson’s alleged statements, partly because he didn’t want to become involved in the case, and partly because he thought it would be harmful to a man he described as a longtime friend, according to his testimony.
Rather, with the promise of anonymity, Shipp provided the information to author Sheila Weller, who wrote a just-published book about the Simpson case, “Raging Heart.” He contacted authorities on his own.
“I thought it was very harmful,” said Shipp, who was an officer from 1974 to October 1989. “I didn’t want to tell the detectives at the time. I didn’t want to tell them anything. I just wanted it to go away.”
Asked by Christopher Darden, a deputy district attorney, why he cooperated with Weller, Shipp said, “Ever since I had the conversation, it was eating me up, and I didn’t want to tell you guys, because I knew I would be in this position. I wanted to remain anonymous.”
In a sometimes blistering crossexamination, Simpson attorney Carl Douglas asked Shipp if he had ever attended a football game with Simpson, double-dated with their respective wives, attended any cultural events or ever played tennis together. Shipp answered “No” to each question, prompting Douglas to ask, “You’re really not this man’s friend, are you, sir?”
To that, Shipp seemed a bit dazed, and responded, “I guess I was like everybody else. I was one of his servants. I did police stuff for him, ran license plates. But like I said, I love this guy.”
In pointed questions, Douglas hinted that Shipp, who admitted to a drinking problem, was lying in his testimony in hopes of gaining fame and furthering a fledgling acting career.
“I’m doing this for my conscience and my peace of mind,” Shipp angrily responded. “I will not have the blood of Nicole on Ron Shipp. I can sleep at night, unlike a lot of others.”