June 10, 1995 in Nation/World

Coroner Demonstrates How Goldman Died Graphic Testimony, Photos Taking Toll On Family, Jury

Associated Press

Warned by the judge not to be swayed by passion or prejudice, jurors in O.J. Simpson’s trial saw more photos of Ronald Goldman’s slashed throat Friday and heard a coroner’s theory that Goldman was pinned in a small area and killed quickly and savagely.

“He has no place to escape,” Dr. Lakshmanan Sathyavagiswaran told jurors. “He’s stuck there.”

Goldman’s body, bleeding from multiple stab wounds, was found slumped against a tree stump in a gated area measuring about 5 feet, 8 inches long and 4 feet, 2 inches wide.

The murder could have been committed in less than a minute, especially if the killer was bigger than Goldman - as Simpson is - and if the assailant was excited and held the element of surprise, Lakshmanan said.

“I felt that the injuries sustained could have been in rapid succession,” he said.

The fifth day of the coroner’s testimony ended an emotionally wrenching week in which his detailed descriptions of two deaths were accompanied by color autopsy photos.

Superior Court Judge Lance Ito recessed court early Thursday after a female juror rushed from the courtroom.

Goldman’s family showed the strain of hearing a second day of details about their son’s murder and autopsy.

When the coroner demonstrated on prosecutor Brian Kelberg how the killer might have slashed Goldman’s neck, Goldman’s father, Fred, gasped, then brought a tissue to his eyes. His wife, Patti Goldman, put her arm around him.

© Copyright 1995 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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