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Misadventures of a Civil War Submarine
James Naismith
American Pendulum
Cades Cove
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The Gulf
Creating Capabilities
The Long Gilded Age

Anatomy of a TrialAnatomy of a Trial

Public Loss, Lessons Learned from The People vs. O.J. Simpson

Jerrianne Hayslett

Narrated by Sheila Book

Available from Audible

Book published by University of Missouri Press

The People vs. O. J. Simpson ranks indisputably as the trial of the century. It featured a double murder, a celebrity defendant, a perjuring witness, and a glove that didn’t fit. The trial became a media circus of outrageous proportions that led the judge to sequester the jury, eject disruptive reporters, and fine the lawyers thousands of dollars. Now an insider at The People vs. O. J. Simpson reveals the untold story of the most widely followed trial in American history and the indelible impact it has had on the judiciary, the media, and the public.

As the Los Angeles Superior Court’s media liaison, Jerrianne Hayslett had unprecedented access to the trial—and met with Judge Lance Ito daily—as she attempted, sometimes unsuccessfully, to mediate between the court and members of the media and to balance their interests. In Anatomy of a Trial, she takes readers behind the scenes to shed new light on people and proceedings and to show how the media and the trial participants changed the court-media landscape to the detriment of the public’s understanding of the judicial system.

For those who think they’ve already read all there is to know about the Simpson trial, this book is an eye-opener. Hayslett kept a detailed journal during the proceedings in which she recorded anecdotes and commentary. She also shares previously undisclosed information to expose some of the myths and stereotypes perpetuated by the trial, while affirming other stories that emerged during that time. By examining this trial after more than a decade, she shows how it has produced a bunker mentality in the judicial system, shaping media and public access to courts with lasting impact on such factors as cameras in the courtroom, jury selection, admonishments from the bench, and fair-trial/free-press tensions.

The first account of the trial written with Judge Ito’s cooperation, Anatomy of a Trial is a page-turning narrative and features photographs that capture both the drama of the courtroom and the excesses of the media. It also includes perspectives of legal and journalism authorities and offers a blueprint for how the courts and media can better meet their responsibilities to the public.

Even today, judges, lawyers, and journalists across the country say the Simpson trial changed everything. This book finally tells us why.

Jerrianne Hayslett continues to work in the field of court-media relations both nationally and internationally.


“Los Angeles Superior Court media adviser Hayslett explores the ramifications of the much publicized 1995 O.J. Simpson murder trial in this unique account focused on Judge Lance Itos role and the media circus inside and outside the courtroom. Ito had once been a rising star in the L.A. legal community and suffered more than other judges presiding over equally high profile trials, argues Hayslett. Though he continues to sit on the bench, Ito has never pursued appointment to a higher court. With excerpts and anecdotes from her personal journal, Hayslett details the difficulties of dealing with the media and the near-impossible task of sequestering a jury for nine months. Interestingly, only two of the original jurors remained at the end of the proceedings. Some may find it ironic that, by publishing yet another account of the highly publicized trial, Hayslett is doing exactly what she condemned in jury members and other trial participants. But insight that comes from her insider status is valuable and may leave readers wishing for her backstage access from the latest chapter in Simpsons ongoing legal battles.”

Publishers Weekly

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University Press Audiobooks
an imprint of Redwood Audiobooks

University Press Audiobooks