Coroner Aide’s Outburst Broke No Laws, Police Say
Los Angeles police detectives have completed a brief investigation of a deputy medical examiner in the O.J. Simpson case and concluded that he broke no laws in an outburst after his testimony during last month’s preliminary hearing, law enforcement officials and other sources close to the case said Wednesday.
The medical examiner, Dr. Irwin Golden, was subjected to intense cross-examination duringthe preliminary hearing. Defense attorney Robert L. Shapiro ridiculed his credentials and his handling of the coroner’s investigation into the June 12 deaths of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Lyle Goldman.
A few weeks after that testimony, sources said, Golden brandished something that looked like a gun in a common area of the coroner’s office and shouted words to the effect of: “This is all you need to take out six or seven lawyers!” Another source said the doctor added: “Death to lawyers.”
The LAPD was informed of the outburst by coroner’s officials shortly after it happened and investigated it to determine whether Golden had broken any laws, which could have included such charges as illegally brandishing a weapon or carrying a concealed weapon. Golden is a forensic pathology instructor who uses props and weapons to teach students, and investigators concluded that the gun could have been a prop or an unloaded weapon.
The comments appeared to be meant as a joke, sources familiar with the investigation said.
The investigators presented the evidence to the city attorney’s office, and lawyers there determined that there did not appear to be any violation of the law. The district attorney’s office was not consulted about the decision whether to file charges because the incident was not considered a possible felony, sources added.
Golden is on vacation and efforts to reach him for comment over the past several days have been unsuccessful. Scott Carrier, a spokesman for the coroner’s office, said he had no knowledge of any investigation into Golden and that if Golden’s actions were the subject of any internal inquiry, it would be a personnel matter and he could not comment.
Late Wednesday, Los Angeles police Cmdr. David J. Gascon confirmed that police investigated Golden but stressed that the case is closed.
* DEFENSE TEAM GROWS
Simpson’s defense team hires an expert on picking jurors. B3