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Mark Fuhrman's 10/2/96 Plea Agreement To Felony Perjury At OJ Simpson's Criminal Trial
SUPERIOR COURT OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA
COUNTY OF LOS ANGELES CENTRAL DISTRICT
THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA, Plaintiff,
MARK FUHRMAN, Defendant.
Original Charge: Count I: Violation of Penal Code section 118 (a felony)
Convicted Of: One Count - Count I of Information - of Penal Code sec 118
Date of Offense: On or about March 15, 1995.
Guilty by: Plea of nolo contendre.
Actual Time In Custody: 0 days 4019 P.C. Time: 0 days
No. BA 109275
PERSONAL HISTORY IN LIEU OF PROBATION REPORT
Hearing: 10/2/96 Time: 9:00 Dept.: 109
Negotiated Plea: People v. West plea - Defendant plead no contest with
(1) no jail time;
(2) three years probation;
(3) probation supervision in defendant's current state of residence;
(4) the minimum restitution fine;
(5) the single term of probation that defendant violate no laws;
(6) entry of a plea of nolo contendere.
Defendant has entered a waiver pursuant to People v. Harvey.
Attorney: Darryl Mounger
Legal Name: Mark Fuhrman A.K.A.: None
Address: [REDACTED] Telephone:
Age: 44 Date of Birth: February 5, 1952
Birthplace: Tacoma, Washington
Citizenship: United States of America
Date Arrived in L.A. County: 1975
Date Arrived in State: 1970
Sex: M Height: 6'2 Weight: 205 Hair: Brown Eyes: Brown
Driver's License No.: [REDACTED]
State of Issuance: [REDACTED]
Social Security No.: [REDACTED]
Education: High School and approximately 2 years college
Military Service: U. S. Marine Corps: 1970-1975
Type of Discharge: Honorable
Health/Handicaps: None known
Alcohol/Drug Use: No drugs, non-abusive occasional alcohol consumption
Father's Name: [REDACTED]
Mother's Name: [REDACTED]
No. of Brothers: [REDACTED] No. of Sisters: [REDACTED]
Present Spouse: [REDACTED]
Former spouse(s): [REDACTED]
Name .... Age .... Custody .... Supported by [REDACTED]
From ... To ... Employer .......... Type of Work ...... Salary
1975 ... 1995 . Los Angeles.........Law Enforcement 1995
............... Police Department [REDACTED]
Present Requesting Agency: California Department of Justice
Date: 10/2/96 Surrendered
BI No.: .... CII No.: .... FBI No.:
No Criminal Record
CIRCUMSTANCE OF THE OFFENSE
Defendant was one of the two detectives originally assigned to investigate the murder of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman. He arrived at the crime scene located on Bundy Drive in Brentwood in the early morning hours of June 12, 1994. Upon arrival, Defendant began his investigation.
Within an hour of his arrival, defendant was notified two more senior detectives had been assigned responsibility for the case.
When the two senior detectives arrived, they requested defendant accompany them to the house of the deceased woman's husband. At this second location, Rockingham Drive, defendant made several evidentiary discoveries which eventually led to the arrest of O.J.Simpson the former husband of the deceased woman.
In July, 1994, defendant appeared as a witness for the prosecution in the preliminary hearing of the homicide case against Simpson.
Defendant was called as a prosecution witness in the homicide trial of People v. Simpson (Los Angeles Superior Court No. BA 097211) in March, 1995. Defendant was cross-examined on March 14 and 15, 1995. On March 15, 1995 defendant was asked the following questions by the cross- examiner and gave the following answers:
Q. "I will rephrase it. I want you to assume that perhaps at sometime since 1985 or 6, you addressed a member of the African American race as a n****r. Is it possible that you have forgotten that act on your part?"
A. "No, it is not possible."
Q. "Are you therefore saying that you have not used that word in the past ten years, Detective Fuhrman?"
A. "Yes, that is what I'm saying."
Q. "And you say under oath that you have not addressed any black person as a n****r or spoken about black people as n****s in the past ten years, Detective Fuhrman."
A. "That's what I'm saying, sir."
Q. "So that anyone who comes to this court and quotes you as using that word in dealing with African Americans would be a liar, would they not, Detective Fuhrman?"
A. "Yes, they would."
Q. "All of them, correct."
A. "All of them."
(Source: People v. Simpson, Vol. 107, page 18899)
On September 5, 1995, Laura Hart McKinny testified. In her testimony she laid the foundation for two tape recorded excerpts which, in Defendant's own statements as recorded, impeached defendant's denial of any use of the racial epithet during the ten year period. She also testified that defendant had used the epithet in non-recorded conversations during the ten year time period.
Three other witnesses, Kathleen Bell, Natalie Singer and Roderick Hodge, each testified to instances of defendant's use of the racial epithet within the ten year period.
On September 6, 1995, defendant was recalled to the witness stand as a defense witness. Out of the presence of the trial jury, defendant asserted his constitutional right not to incriminate himself.
Through his attorney, defendant has stated he is entering a People v. West plea because he believes it is in his best interest to do so. Defendant deeply regrets the effect his testimony has had on the general public, the Los Angeles Police Department and its employees, and his family.
Violation of Penal Code section 118 is a felony punishable by a term of two, three or four years in prison. A person convicted of the offense is eligible for probation and may be supervised out of state pursuant to the interstate compact.
Criteria Affecting Probation [Rule of Court 414]
(a) Crime related facts:
(1.) Seriousness as compared to other instances of the same crime
While perjury is always a serious offense, it is rare that a witness who has given testimony is prosecuted for that perjury. When there is prosecution, the usual case involves a situation in which the witness has given false testimony about an event related to the crime or provided a false alibi.
Here there is no evidence that defendant gave any false testimony about his investigative efforts. The false testimony related to personal use of a racial epithet during a time period that pre-dated the criminal investigation.
An argument can be made that this type of perjury is less serious than giving false testimony about the investigation.
(a)(2) No weapon was involved.
(a)(3) No individual victim was involved.
(a)(4) No injury was inflicted on any person.
(a)(5) There was no individual who suffered monetary loss.
(a)(6) Defendant was an active participant in the crime.
(a)(7) There are unique circumstances in the commission of the offense.
(a)(8) No criminal sophistication was demonstrated.
(a)(9) The defendant did take advantage of a position of trust and confidence in the commission of the offense.
(b) Defendant Related Facts
(b)(1) No prior criminal record.
(b)(2) Not applicable because defendant has never before been placed on parole or probation.
(b)(3) Defendant is willing to comply with the terms and conditions of probation.
(b)(4) Defendant is able to comply with the terms of probation.
(b)(5) Imprisonment would create financial hardship on the defendant's dependents. Because of his background as a police officer defendant would be at risk in prison. There is no evidence that defendant needs to be incarcerated to deter him from future similar criminal conduct.
(b)(6) Defendant's primary adult employment was as a peace officer. One result of this conviction is defendant is precluded from ever again being a peace officer in California. (Government Code, Section 1029.) The high profile that resulted from the events surrounding the crime as well as the news focus that the conviction will create will make it difficult for defendant to find employment at any professional level.
(b)(7) The remarks of defendant as reported by his counsel indicate remorse.
(b)(8) Defendant presents no danger to others.
It would appear that defendant is an appropriate candidate for probation.
CIRCUMSTANCES IN AGGRAVATION [RULE OF COURT 421]
The factors which appear to be circumstances in aggravation are:
Rule 421(a)(6): Defendant's perjury illegally interfered with the judicial process.
Rule 421 (a)(11): Defendant took advantage of a position of trust.
CIRCUMSTANCES IN MITIGATION [RULE OF COURT 423]
The factors which appear to be circumstances in mitigation are:
Rule 423(a)(6): There was no physical harm to any persons or property.
Rule 423 (b)(1): The defendant has no prior criminal record.
Rule 423(b)(3): The defendant has voluntarily acknowledged wrong doing at an early stage of the criminal process.
JOHN A. GORDNIER
Sr. Assistant Attorney General
Counsel For The People
/s/ John A. Gordnier
JOHN A. GORDNIER
Counsel For Defendant
The within and foregoing history in lieu of probation report has been
read and considered by me this 2nd day of October, 1996.
JOHN W. OUDERXIRK
Judge Of The Superior Court
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