Ronald Lyle "Ron" Goldman (July 2, 1968 – June 12, 1994) was an American waiter and an aspiring model. He was murdered along with Nicole Simpson, former wife of O.J. Simpson, an actor and retired American football player. The subsequent criminal investigation and trial against O. J. Simpson was described as the "trial of the century." Although Simpson was acquitted following the criminal trial, he was later held liable for Goldman's death and that of his ex-wife in a 1997 civil trial.
Ronald Goldman grew up in Buffalo Grove, Illinois. His parents divorced when he was six and he was then raised by his father, Fred Goldman. His mother was Sharon Rufo.
He attended high school at Adlai E. Stevenson High School in Lincolnshire, Illinois. He was a student at Illinois State University for one semester and a pledge to Sigma Nu fraternity before he moved with his family to California. While living in Los Angeles, he attended Pierce College. He had been supporting himself as a waiter and tennis instructor. According to a book authored by some of his family members, titled His Name is Ron, before working at the restaurant Mezzaluna, Goldman worked with cerebral palsy patients. He was also an avid Karate practitioner, achieving a 3rd degree black belt in the discipline. Goldman was a contestant on the short-lived game show Studs in 1992. Goldman had also doodled plans for a bar and restaurant to be named ANKH, after the Egyptian religious symbol.
At the time of his murder, Goldman was working as a waiter at Mezzaluna Trattoria (above, now a Peet's Coffee Shop), a restaurant located at 11750 San Vicente Boulevard in Los Angeles. Nicole Brown Simpson, a friend of Goldman and the ex-wife of O. J. Simpson, had called to report that her mother Juditha Brown had accidentally left her eyeglasses on the table. After a quick search, they were discovered in the gutter outside the restaurant. Although Goldman had not served Nicole's table, he agreed to take them to her home after work. Some authors, including Gerry Spence and the perjured LAPD detective, Mark Fuhrman, have cited this fact as evidence that Simpson and Goldman were lovers. Goldman told friends that he was just friends with Simpson.
Before returning the eyeglasses, Goldman stopped at his apartment, located at 11663 Gorham Avenue in Brentwood, (above) to change clothes and possibly take a shower. When he arrived at Nicole's located at 875 South Bundy Drive, he was murdered along with Simpson on the walkway leading to the residence, just a few weeks shy of his 26th birthday. During a reconstruction of the events, police believe he had arrived during or shortly after the murder of Simpson and was stabbed to death in the process.
O.J. Simpson was charged and tried for both the murders of Goldman and his ex-wife. In October 1995, after a public trial that lasted nearly eight months, Simpson was found not guilty of both murders. In a 1997 civil trial, a jury found Simpson liable for the wrongful death of Goldman and awarded $33 million (USD) in damages to the Goldman family.
Ronald Goldman is buried at Valley Oaks Memorial Park in Westlake Village, California.
The rights to O. J. Simpson's book, If I Did It, a first-person account of how he would have committed the murders had he admitted committing them, were awarded to the Goldman family in August 2007. The family was granted the proceeds from the book in 2007 as part of the $33.5 million civil jury award against the ex-football star they have been trying to collect for over a decade. The Goldmans own the copyright, media rights and movie rights. They also acquired Simpson's name, likeness, life story and right of publicity in connection with the book, according to court documents. After renaming the book to If I Did It: Confessions of the Killer, the Goldmans published it in September 2007 through Beaufort Books. Within days it became a bestseller.
The Goldman family contributed a portion of proceeds from the If I Did It book sale to the newly-founded Ron Goldman Foundation for Justice. The foundation provides grants for multiple organizations and programs that provide resources to victims and survivors of violent crimes.
1.^ Mosk, Matthew; Hall, Carla (1994-06-15). "Victim Thrived on Life in Fast Lane, His Friends Recall". The Los Angeles Times. http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/news/la-oj-anniv-goldman,0,3366898.story. Retrieved 2009-03-10.
2.^ Celizic, Mike (2007-09-14). "Goldman family defends publication of ‘If I Did It’". MSNBC. http://www.slate.com/id/2151608. Retrieved 2007-09-18.
3.^ CBS News (2007-09-18). ""If I Did It" Ghost Writer: O. J.'s Guilty". CBS News. http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2007/09/18/earlyshow/leisure/books/main3271298.shtml. Retrieved 2007-09-18.
4.^ USA TODAY 14 August 2007 :Denise Brown wants O. J. book boycott
5.^ The Ron Goldman Foundation for Justice 2007:The Ron Goldman Foundation for Justice