A Las Vegas jury found O.J. Simpson guilty on all counts of kidnapping, armed robbery and assault with a deadly weapon late last night. The verdict comes 13 years and a day after the former football great was acquitted of murdering Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman. Simpson now faces life in prison. The judge refused bail for O.J. while his lawyer files an appeal, and Simpson's sister, Carmelita fainted as he was led out of the courtroom in handcuffs. The charges stem from a misadventure last September when Simpson and some gun-toting goons executed a bumbling raid on a room at the Palace Station casino to try to recover some old sports junk Simpson claimed had been stolen from his trophy room. "He's extremely upset, extremely emotional, but it is something that was expected," O.J.'s lawyer, Yale Galanter said. He says Simpson's fame is what did him in. "Definitely someone like OJ Simpson, everyone has a fixed opinion of him and it's troubling. I wasn't surprised." Simpson will be sentenced in December. [ABC.net.au]
Diff'rent Strokes star Gary Coleman had just finished a wholesome evening of bowling with his wife and his bodyguard in lovely Payson, Utah, yesterday when 24-year-old punk Colt Rushton approached him in the parking lot and demanded that the actor pose for a cellphone picture with him. Coleman refused, Rushton would not back down, and it ended like it always ends when some fool steps to Gary fucking Coleman: with the perp flat on his ass.
The New York Post is tough on crime. Especially celebrity crime. They take gleeful pleasure (as we all do!) in cataloging the excesses and trashy doings of the drug-addicted and famous. Yesterday's breathless report on the arrest of poor former child star Tatum O'Neal went into embarrassing detail of her arrest for purchasing crack cocaine ("I'm researching a part," a "source" told the Post). But today's front page? And accompanying exclusive report from brittle columnist Andrea Peyser? A sympathetic tale of a troubled woman just doing her best to stay clean. The lead: "TATUM is saved!" Who the hell is O'Neal's publicist, Obi-Wan Kenobi? (Or, uh, Howard Rubenstein?) Drug-addicted celebrities! You may wonder how to garner such friendly treatment in the Post after your next drug deal gone bad! We have some suggestions:
Nicolas Cage's long, excruciating nightmare on the International Chihuahua-Thief Blacklist ended today in a British court, where his solicitor acknowledged a settlement between the Oscar-winner and rumor-slinging memoirist Kathleen Turner. The actress wrote of several newly disproven Cage exploits in her recent book Send Yourself Roses, including being "arrested twice for drunk-driving" and renting-to-own a Chihuahua on the set of Peggy Sue Got Married. Cage took his beef to court after the Daily Mail published the offending excerpt. Sadly, we've learned that the resolution will deprive us of some of our favorite apocrypha of contemporary literature:
Sort of! The International Narcotics Board states, in its yearly report, that celebrities should be getting harsher sentences and more appropriate prosecution in general for their myriad drug offenses. Well, duh. In addition to more far-reaching topics like painkiller shortages for the indigent and the opium fields of Afghanistan, the INCB condemns the handling of celebrity drug culture as far too lenient and dangerously misrepresenting the seriousness of druggery to the world's wide-eyed, "cult of celebrity" obsessed youth. The report doesn't actually do anything fun or exciting like name names in particular. (This is probably just because everyone is so sick of typing, seeing, reading, or thinking about defiantly anti-rehab singer Amy Winehouse's name. Sorry.)