Journey to Justice

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Ballantine Books, 1996 - Law - 383 pages
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In Journey to Justice, Johnnie Cochran illuminates the odyssey that led him from a small, rented home shared with his extended family in Shreveport, Louisiana, to Judge Lance Ito's courtroom. In 1954, Brown vs. the Board of Education galvanized the young Cochran. Taking Thurgood Marshall as his role model, Cochran embarked on a legal career in which he won landmark decisions against official misconduct within the criminal justice system. From Leonard Deadwyler, a black motorist stopped for speeding to the hospital with his pregnant wife, then shot dead by the police; to Ron Settles, a black college football star whose death at the hands of police was made to look like suicide; to the record 9.4-million-dollar jury verdict he won for a thirteen-year-old Latina girl molested by a uniformed LAPD officer, Cochran fought to change police procedures responsible for some of the most blatant abuse committed by those sworn to "protect and serve". It was the sobering experience of these earlier cases that fueled the inner turmoil of a man whose deeply felt sense of duty to the law and to his people compelled him to take a leading role in the case of People vs. Orenthal James Simpson, one of the greatest morality plays of our time - a play that has forever altered our perceptions of race relations in America. In Journey to Justice we learn about the man behind the sound bites, the zealous advocate for such diverse clients as Michael Jackson and Reginald Denny, the white truck driver attacked in the aftermath of the Rodney King verdict. In Journey to Justice, Cochran reflects not only on how these events shaped his legal philosophy but also on the contexts within which these courtroom dramas wereplayed out.

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Journey to justice

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Famous O.J. Simpson defense attorney Cochran finally delivers his memoir, which traces his odyssey from a small, rented home in Louisiana to Judge Ito's courtroom. Read full review


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About the author (1996)

Johnnie L. Cochran, Jr. continues to practice law. He also co-hosts a live, weeknight talk show, "Cochran and Grace,  for Court TV. The show analyzes and discusses the day's top legal stories and their wider social and political implications. He lives in Los Angeles and New York with his wife, Dr. Dale Mason Cochran, and his father, Johnnie L. Cochran, Sr.

Tim Rutten is an award-winning reporter for the Los Angeles Times. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife, Leslie Abramson, and their son, Aidan.

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