March 1, 1995 in Nation/World

Key Witness For Simpson Tearfully Declares Honesty

Associated Press
 

Distraught over another delay and under attack as a liar, key O.J. Simpson witness Rosa Lopez tearfully declared her honesty Tuesday and told the judge, “This is not my fault … to have seen and to have heard.”

Lopez, who worked as a maid for Simpson’s neighbor, spoke after being told she could not resume her testimony until Thursday because defense lawyers had failed to reveal one of two crucial summer interviews with her.

Before Lopez entered the courtroom, Deputy District Attorney Marcia Clark vehemently attacked the defense for withholding the information and criticized Lopez for contradicting herself in various statements that may conflict with her testimony.

Lopez has insisted she wants to return to her native El Salvador to escape the turmoil surrounding her account of events at Simpson’s estate on June 12, the night Simpson’s exwife and her friend were murdered a couple miles away.

The tiny woman unexpectedly stepped up to the courtroom lectern and asked to speak directly to the judge after a day of vitriolic accusations by lawyers and suggestions that Lopez was a puppet of the defense.

“I want to tell you that I was very honest with you,” Lopez told Superior Court Judge Lance Ito through an interpreter. “You told me to come back on Monday, and I came back on Monday. I was very honest with my attorneys. … I came from very far to finish with this.”

“I’m very sick, sir,” she said in a quavering voice. “I don’t eat during the day, sir. I’m not sleeping very well.”

Then, her voice rising, she said, “This is not my fault to work close to Mr. Simpson, to have seen and to have heard.”

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 This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.


Thoughts and opinions on this story? Click here to comment >>

Get stories like this in a free daily email