Long-time friend and former manager of OJ Simpson, Norman Pardo, revealed in an interview that Simpson has been exhibiting increasingly troubling behavior since being imprisoned, and may suspect that OJ Simpson is actually suffering from a brain disease.
Furthermore, Pardo says that Simpson, the jailed 68-year-old former football star whose life is under new scrutiny as he is the subject of a new FX miniseries, is very depressed.
In an interview on Good Morning America with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos, Pardo say that Simpson has become “really isolated” while in prison.”
“He’s very depressed right now,” Pardo said. “He doesn’t want to talk to people… he really likes to be left alone.”
Simpson’s preference for being alone may be linked to depression, but the isolation is often self-enforced, according to Pardo. Simpson will often ask his visitors to leave, regardless of how much they may have traveled in order to see him in prison.
“He’s said, ‘I’ve got to go back in there, we’re working on fantasy football things,’ or things like that,” Pardo said of his former client. “He actually leaves them there, which is really weird because they drive three days to get there.”
OJ Simpson’s odd behavior has caused many to wonder if he is suffering from chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE, which is a progressive, degenerative brain disease that has been linked to sports injuries, particularly contact sports like football. It is caused by repeated blows to the head.
When specifically asked about whether or not Simpson may be suffering from CTE, Pardo would not rule it out, and simply reiterated that Simpson, who is serving a 33-year prison sentence in Nevada for a 2007 robbery and kidnapping involving sports memorabilia, has “a lot of issues.”
“He’ll do things that are just whacked out. He’ll sit in the corner and he’ll talk to himself, he’ll answer himself. I’ve caught him doing that numerous times.”
Pardo expanded upon OJ Simpson’s disturbing behavior, adding that Simpson no longer seems to grasp a lot of things that were once easy for him to grasp, saying that he is “like a child.”
“He’s like a child. When we handle him, it’s like a child. You’ve got to really watch him.”
The interview with Norman Pardo about Simpson comes just a mere two days after the premier of the new drama series showing on FX, called American Crime Story: The People vs OJ Simpson. The miniseries delves into the investigation into the 1993 murders of Simpson’s ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her boyfriend, Ron Goldman.
Simpson was charged with the double homicide, but ended up being acquitted in 1995 at the conclusion of what many refer to as the “trial of the century.” Simpson has always and repeatedly maintained that he had nothing to do with the deaths of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman, and is reportedly not happy about a miniseries that will remind the public of his criminal trial for the grisly double homicide of his ex-wife and her boyfriend.
Despite not being pleased with the miniseries, though, Pardo says that he is likely watching the miniseries from prison.
“He’ll say he won’t but he always does,” Pardo said. “It’s about him, even though it’s fictional or what not, it’s still, it’s about him so he’ll watch. Somehow, they’ll figure out a way to do it.”
As for Pardo, he said he laughed at Cuba Gooding, Jr.’s portrayal of his friend OJ Simpson, claiming that Gooding failed to capture OJ Simpson’s charisma and mannerisms. Additionally, Pardo claims to have about 70 hours of videotape of Simpson, but says that no one from FX bothered to reach out to him, and that fact, Pardo thinks, is extremely evident in the miniseries.
“They never consulted, I don’t think, anybody from O.J.’s side to explain that that’s not O.J. It doesn’t even sound like him,” Pardo said. “O.J. Simpson has a charisma about him. He’s a good looking guy. He’s a ladies man.”
OJ may have once been a ladies’ man, but this is not the first disturbing report about his life in prison. Click here to read about his conflict with a white supremacist while in prison.
[Photo by Pool/Getty Images]