LAS VEGAS – The judge in the O.J. Simpson armed robbery trial rejected prosecutors' attempts Wednesday to present evidence related to Simpson's acquittal in the 1994 slayings of his ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend, Ronald Goldman.
Clark County District Court Judge Jackie Glass decided overnight not to let David Cook, a California lawyer for the Goldman estate, testify about answers Simpson gave in February 2007 in response to a legal questionnaire about his assets.
"We are here to decide the case of 2007, so Mr. Cook will not be testifying," Glass said as she began court and instructed prosecutors to call another witness.
Prosecutor Chris Owens called former co-defendant Walter Alexander to the stand.
Alexander, 47, a Simpson golfing buddy from Mesa, Ariz., testified almost immediately that Simpson asked for guns to be brought to a hotel room confrontation with memorabilia dealers Bruce Fromong and Alfred Beardsley.
Simpson has said he didn't ask anyone to bring guns and that he didn't know anyone in the room was armed. He and his lawyers maintain he only wanted to retrieve personal items that had been stolen from him years earlier.
"He said, 'Do you think you can get some heat?"' Alexander said of Simpson. "My friend, Spencer, spoke up and said, 'No problem. I got plenty of heat. I'm licensed to carry a gun."'
Alexander, who used the nickname "Goldie," said Michael "Spencer" McClinton gave him a .22-caliber pistol that he tucked into his waistband while McClinton wielded a larger handgun during the alleged robbery.
Alexander said Simpson told the men to keep the guns in their waistbands, not display them or use them.
"He said, 'Just bring them so we can be protected,"' Alexander said. "I can't remember the exact words, but something to that effect. He said, 'Just bring the guns so they know that we mean business."'
Alexander and McClinton once faced the same charges as Simpson and his remaining co-defendant, Clarence "C.J." Stewart. But McClinton and Alexander pleaded guilty to reduced charges and agreed to testify for the prosecution.
Simpson and Stewart have pleaded not guilty to 12 charges, including kidnapping, armed robbery, coercion and assault with a deadly weapon. They face prison if convicted.
Alexander has called himself a real estate salesman, but told The Associated Press on Tuesday he has been making a living recently as a chauffeur.
He is expected to face tough cross-examination.
During an evidentiary hearing last November, Simpson lawyer Yale Galanter got Alexander to concede that he once offered to slant his testimony in Simpson's favor if he was paid.
"I felt like I could lean toward that angle rather than telling the exact truth," Alexander said.
Cook has pursued Simpson for more than a decade to obtain payment of a $33.5 million civil wrongful death judgment levied in March 1997 against Simpson by a California judge.
"She didn't want me to walk in there with a whole train of ghosts — Nicole Brown Simpson, Ron Goldman, Marcia Clark, Chris Darden, the 1994 version of O.J. Simpson, Johnnie Cochrane," Cook said of the former Los Angeles County prosecutors and one of Simpson's former defense lawyers. "She didn't want me to fill up that courtroom with those people."
District Attorney David Roger said Cook could help show Simpson tried to hide memorabilia and avoid paying the Goldman judgment, and that anger at the Goldmans was a reason he organized the confrontation.
"It establishes his motive," Roger said.
Galanter told Glass the testimony would prejudice the jury.