Michael Jace, O.J. Simpson: Hollywood's Most Shocking Murders
The news that Michael Jace has been arrested for the murder of his wife is shocking, but it's not the first time that Hollywood has been shaken by a celebrity crime.
The shocking news that “The Shield” actor Michael Jace killed his wife of 10 years has shocked the entertainment world. For non-celebrities the life of famous people always seems so glamorous and stress-free, so it’s a surprise when it turns out their lives can be more troubled and complicated below the surface than anyone had ever realised.
Natalie Wood, pictured with James Dean, mysteriously drowned while on a yachting trip with her husband and Christopher Walken
The world was just as rocked by these shocking celebrity crimes as it was by Jace’s arrest and subsequent confession.
In November 1981 Natalie Wood went out on a yacht with her husband Robert Wagner, her co-star Christopher Walken and the boat’s captain Dennis Davern. Most of what happened is shrouded in mystery and lost to time, but Wood’s body was discovered a mile from the boat, with a small dinghy washed ashore close by. Her husband initially claimed he knew nothing of his wife’s decision to leave the boat, later admitting they had argued before her death. Her death was ruled an accidental drowning, although conflicting statements over the years have implied there’s more than meets the eye to this one.
In probably the most famous celebrity trial of all time, in 1994 O.J. Simpson was accused of murdering his ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and a friend of her's, Ron Goldman. The pair were found stabbed to death outside of Brown’s Los Angeles home, and despite an overwhelming amount of evidence against him, and a bizarre theatrical performance with a glove, Simpson was let off. He is currently serving time in a jail in Nevada for various other crimes, including armed robbery.
In 2002 "In Cold Blood" actor Robert Blake was arrested for murdering his wife. Blake had apparently approached several stuntmen who he had asked to kill her on his behalf. There was no physical evidence linking him to the murder so he was acquitted, although the children of his wife later filed a civil suit against him. The suit attested that the actor was responsible for her murder, of this he was found liable and ordered to pay $30 million.
In 2003 Lana Clarkson was found dead in the home of music impresario Phil Spector. She had been shot in the mouth, in what Spector claims was an “accidental suicide.” “She kissed the gun,” Spector claimed in an interview with a magazine. He was charged with her murder and is currently incarcerated in the California State Prison.
Phil Spector will be eligible for parole when he is 88 years old
In December 2008 the world mourned along with Jennifer Hudson, whose mother, brother and nephew were murdered by William Balfour. Balfour was Hudson’s former brother-in-law, who committed the crimes out of anger at his wife, who had begun a new relationship and wanted a divorce.