Detective in OJ case emerges as a 'torturer'

In passages from what have become known as the Fuhrman tapes in the OJ Simpson trial, the former detective Mark Fuhrman says he went on a beating spree and "basically tortured" suspects after two Los Angeles policemen were shot and wounded in 1978.

The tapes, which have not yet been ruled admissible in the trial of the American-football star, lend credibility to the defence contention that Mr Fuhrman was a corrupt and racist officer capable of planting evidence against Mr Simpson, who is black.

In the transcripts from a 1985 interview given to a would-be screenwriter, Laura Hart McKinny, Mr Fuhrman describes how, after two policemen were shot in the Boyle Heights area of Los Angeles, he chased four suspects into an apartment and put a gun to the head of a girl to use her as a shield. "There were four policemen, four guys. We broke 'em. Their faces were mush. They had pictures of the walls with blood all the way to the ceiling and finger marks of trying to crawl out of the room," Mr Fuhrman said in the transcripts, obtained by the Los Angeles Times.

In a police inquiry Mr Fuhrman says the authorities "knew damn well I did it" but he escaped punishment.

The similarities between Mr Fuhrman's account and police records of an incident in Boyle Heights bolster the contention of Mr Simpson's lawyers that Mr Fuhrman was not making up details to impress the screenwriter, as his lawyers have suggested. A police evaluation of him in 1979 said he became "easily aggravated and argumentative" with a suspect and responded "with antagonism''.

Prosecutors in the Simpson case have argued that the defence's attack on Mr Fuhrman's character and credibility does not prove he planted the bloody glove that he said he found on Mr Simpson's estate on the night Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman were murdered. The defence challenge, the prosecution says, is intended only to distract from the question of Mr Simpson's guilt or innocence in the deaths of his ex-wife and her friend.

In transcripts yet to be released, Mr Fuhrman allegedly uses the word ''nigger'' 30 times and describes 17 ways of planting and fabricating evidence. On the witness-stand Mr Fuhrman said he had struck the "n-word" from his vocabulary for the past 10 years.

In a statement, Anthony Pellicano, a private investigator hired by Mr Fuhrman, tried to introduce some damage control: "He wanted this woman to be excited about his stories ... he was ... posturing and wanted to make himself look macho."

The Simpson defence said it would call Mr Fuhrman back to the witness- stand when the trial resumes on Monday.

Judge Lance Ito has not yet said when he will rule on the admissibility of the Fuhrman tapes, which have been edited to remove references to the judge's wife, Captain Margaret York who was Mr Fuhrman's police supervisor, and he allegedly makes detrimental comments about her on the tapes.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager (B2B) - Romford - £40,000 + car

£35000 - £40000 per annum + car and benefits: Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager...

Ashdown Group: Helpdesk Analyst - Devon - £20,000

£18000 - £20000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Helpdesk Analyst - Devon - £20,000 ...

Ashdown Group: Data Scientist - London - £50,000 + bonus

£35000 - £50000 per annum + generous bonus: Ashdown Group: Business Analytics ...

Ashdown Group: IT Project Coordinator (Software Development) - Kingston

£45000 - £50000 per annum: Ashdown Group: IT Project Coordinator (Software Dev...

Day In a Page

General Election 2015: ‘We will not sit down with Nicola Sturgeon’, says Ed Balls

'We will not sit down with Nicola Sturgeon'

In an exclusive interview, Ed Balls says he won't negotiate his first Budget with SNP MPs - even if Labour need their votes to secure its passage
VE Day 70th anniversary: How ordinary Britons celebrated the end of war in Europe

How ordinary Britons celebrated VE Day

Our perception of VE Day usually involves crowds of giddy Britons casting off the shackles of war with gay abandon. The truth was more nuanced
They came in with William Caxton's printing press, but typefaces still matter in the digital age

Typefaces still matter in the digital age

A new typeface once took years to create, now thousands are available at the click of a drop-down menu. So why do most of us still rely on the old classics, asks Meg Carter?
Discovery of 'missing link' between the two main life-forms on Earth could explain evolution of animals, say scientists

'Missing link' between Earth's two life-forms found

New microbial species tells us something about our dark past, say scientists
The Pan Am Experience is a 'flight' back to the 1970s that never takes off - at least, not literally

Pan Am Experience: A 'flight' back to the 70s

Tim Walker checks in and checks out a four-hour journey with a difference
Humans aren't alone in indulging in politics - it's everywhere in the animal world

Humans aren't alone in indulging in politics

Voting, mutual back-scratching, coups and charismatic leaders - it's everywhere in the animal world
Crisp sales are in decline - but this tasty trivia might tempt back the turncoats

Crisp sales are in decline

As a nation we're filling up on popcorn and pitta chips and forsaking their potato-based predecessors
Ronald McDonald the muse? Why Banksy, Ron English and Keith Coventry are lovin' Maccy D's

Ronald McDonald the muse

A new wave of artists is taking inspiration from the fast food chain
13 best picnic blankets

13 best picnic blankets

Dine al fresco without the grass stains and damp bottoms with something from our pick of picnic rugs
Barcelona 3 Bayern Munich 0 player ratings: Lionel Messi scores twice - but does he score highest in our ratings?

Barcelona vs Bayern Munich player ratings

Lionel Messi scores twice - but does he score highest in our ratings?
Martin Guptill: Explosive New Zealand batsman who sets the range for Kiwis' big guns

Explosive batsman who sets the range for Kiwis' big guns

Martin Guptill has smashed early runs for Derbyshire and tells Richard Edwards to expect more from the 'freakish' Brendon McCullum and his buoyant team during their tour of England
General Election 2015: Ed Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

He was meant to be Labour's biggest handicap - but has become almost an asset
General Election 2015: A guide to the smaller parties, from the the National Health Action Party to the Church of the Militant Elvis Party

On the margins

From Militant Elvis to Women's Equality: a guide to the underdogs standing in the election
Amr Darrag: Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister in exile still believes Egypt's military regime can be replaced with 'moderate' Islamic rule

'This is the battle of young Egypt for the future of our country'

Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister Amr Darrag still believes the opposition can rid Egypt of its military regime and replace it with 'moderate' Islamic rule, he tells Robert Fisk
Why patients must rely less on doctors: Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'

Why patients must rely less on doctors

Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'