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Joy and utter despair: a tale of two families

Los Angeles (Agencies) - It was a story of two families.

As the verdict was read out, Arnelle Simpson, OJ's daughter from his first marriage, turned to her brother and said: "We did it, Jason. God got us through."

Jason Simpson leaned forward, head buried in his hands, and cried with relief.

But the family of Ron Goldman, the second, and sometimes forgotten, victim of the double murder, looked devastated.

His sister, Kim, dissolved in uncontrollable tears. Fred Goldman, the victim's father, later called the jury's verdict a "nightmare."

"Last 13 June, 1994, was the worst nightmare of my life. This is the second," he said, crying as he spoke. "This prosecution team didn't lose today, and I deeply believe that this country lost today. Justice was not served."

Mr Goldman, who last week branded OJ Simpson a "murderer", said that he and his family would do everything in their power "to bring about the kind of change that won't allow what happened today to ever happen to another family again".

Members of OJ Simpson's family said that their religious faith helped them to survive the trial. Simpson's sister, Shirley Baker, said: "For months you all have been asking me how I feel... I feel like standing on top of this table and dancing a jig."

His mother, Eunice Simpson, said: "I was always in prayer, I knew my son was innocent."

Still undecided is the future of Simpson's two younger children, Sydney, 9, and Justin, 7, left motherless at the death of Nicole Simpson.

During the trial, the children lived with their mother's family. Reporters asked if they would return to live with their father. "We're just going to have to take it one day at a time," Arnelle Simpson said.

"We have two children that we love and we are going to do the very best for the children," Ms Baker said.