Thursday, March 29, 2012

Celebrity Grave: Celebrity Lawyer Johnnie Cochran 2005

 
Johnnie L. Cochran, Jr. (October 2, 1937 – March 29, 2005) was an American lawyer best known for his leadership role in the defense and criminal acquittal of O. J. Simpson for the murder of his former wife Nicole Simpson and her friend Ronald Goldman.

 
Cochran also represented Sean Combs (during his trial on gun and bribery charges), Michael Jackson, actor Todd Bridges, football player Jim Brown, rapper Snoop Dogg, former heavyweight Champion Riddick Bowe, and Reginald Oliver Denny, the trucker beaten by a mob during the 1992 Los Angeles riots. He also defended athlete Marion Jones when she faced charges of doping during her high school track career. Cochran was known for his skill in the courtroom and his prominence as an early advocate for victims of alleged police abuse.

Johnnie Cochran died at his home in Los Angeles on Tuesday, March 29, 2005 from a brain tumor. In April 2004, Cochran underwent surgery, which led to his staying away from the media. Shortly thereafter, he told the New York Post he was feeling well, and that he was in good health.

Public viewing of his casket was conducted on April 4 and April 5 and a memorial service was held at Little Union Baptist Church on April 8, 2005 in Shreveport. His remains were interred in the Inglewood Park Cemetery in Inglewood, California. The funeral was attended by numerous former clients and friends. Among them were Michael Jackson, Reverend Jesse Jackson, Reverend Al Sharpton, Sean "Diddy" Combs, O.J. Simpson, Stevie Wonder, Magic Johnson, actress Angela Bassett, Gloria Allred, former San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown, Abner Louima, and others.

 
In honor of Cochran, on January 24, 2006, Los Angeles Unified School District officials unanimously approved the renaming of Mount Vernon Middle School, Cochran's boyhood middle school, to Johnnie L. Cochran, Jr. Middle School, saying he was an "extraordinary, superb lawyer with movie-star celebrity status." There have been mixed reactions about the board of education's decision, primarily because of Cochran's work as a lawyer. For instance, the sister of Nicole Brown Simpson has expressed her disappointment with the decision, although she called Cochran "a great defense attorney." Since the school was renamed, others have voiced their ideas of naming a street after Cochran. City Councilman Herb J. Wesson Jr. wants the city to rename a section of 17th Street, because he feels Cochran was "a great attorney and a great role model who contributed to this community."

In 2007, Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles opened the new Johnnie L. Cochran Jr. Brain Tumor Center, a research center headed by noted neurosurgeon Keith Black, who had been Cochran's doctor.

 
 

No comments:

Post a Comment