Robert George Kardashian (February 22, 1944 – September 30, 2003) was an American attorney and businessman. He gained national recognition as O. J. Simpson's friend and defense attorney during the latter's 1995 murder trial.
Robert Kardashian was born in Los Angeles, California, the son of Armenian-American parents Helen (née Arakelian) and Arthur Kardashian. His grandparents, Sam and Harom Kardaschoff, were ethnic Armenian Molokan "Jumpers" from Karakale, Kars, Russian Empire (now Turkey). They migrated to the United States in 1913, just before the Armenian Genocide. Their son Tatos anglicized his name to Tom, started a business in rubbish collection in Los Angeles and married another Karakale Jumper immigrant, Hamas Shakarian.
Kardashian earned a law degree from the University of San Diego School of Law and practiced for about a decade; after that, he went into business. When he presented the O.J. Simpson case in 1995, it had been over 20 years since Kardashian had last practiced law.
With his former wife, Kris Jenner, he had four children: Kourtney, Kimberly, Khloé, and Robert, Jr., all of whom have achieved fame after his death, mainly through the E! cable network reality television show, Keeping Up with the Kardashians, and related programs.
After Kardashian's divorce from his first wife, Kris, was finalized, he married Jan Ashley. That marriage did not last, and he later married his third wife, Ellen, two months before he died.
O. J. Simpson case
Kardashian and Simpson first met in the early 1970s and became close friends.
Simpson stayed in Kardashian's house during the days following the June 12, 1994, murders of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman. Kardashian was the man seen carrying Simpson's garment bag the day that Simpson flew back from Chicago. Prosecutors speculated that the bag may have contained Simpson's bloody clothes or the murder weapon.
Simpson failed to turn himself in at 11 a.m. on June 17, 1994, and Kardashian read a letter by Simpson to the collected media. The letter was interpreted by many as a suicide note.
Simpson was charged with the murders and subsequently acquitted of all criminal charges in a controversial criminal trial. Kardashian had let his license to practice law become inactive before the Simpson case. He reactivated his license to aid in Simpson's defense as a volunteer assistant on his legal team. He sat by Simpson throughout the trial.
The New York Times reported that, "Mr. Kardashian said in a 1996 ABC interview that he questioned Mr. Simpson's innocence: 'I have doubts. The blood evidence is the biggest thorn in my side; that causes me the greatest problems. So I struggle with the blood evidence.'"
Kardashian died of esophageal cancer on September 30, 2003 at the age of 59. He is buried at Inglewood Memorial Park Cemetery.
1.^ "Robert Kardashian, a Lawyer For O. J. Simpson, Dies at 59". The New York Times. October 3, 2003. Retrieved November 22, 2010.
2.^ "Obituaries". The Desert Sun. May 28, 2008.
3.^ "Helen Kardashian - Kim Kardashian: Official website". Kimkardashian.celebuzz.com. Retrieved 2012-07-25.
4.^ Harvey, Oliver (March 16, 2012). "Kim Kardashian is keeping up with the Armenians". The Sun (London). Retrieved September 3, 2012.
5.^ Reed, Christopher (October 6, 2003). "Obituary: Robert Kardashian". The Guardian (London). Retrieved November 22, 2010.
6.^ "O.J. Simpson trial: Testimony about Simpson's trip to Chicago". CNN. October 11, 2007. Retrieved October 17, 2011.
7.^ Lowry, Brian (June 21, 2010). "From the couch: O.J.'s legacy continues". Fox Sports. Retrieved November 22, 2010.
8.^ "Former O.J. Simpson lawyer, Kardashian, dies". CNN. October 1, 2003. Retrieved November 22, 2010.