SAN JUAN CAPISTRANO — Attorney Gloria Allred on Sunday lambasted the promoters of O.J. Simpson's upcoming trip to England, calling it a "tasteless invitation" that belies the seriousness of the international problem of wife battering.
Allred, a spokeswoman for the family of Nicole Brown Simpson, said the money for Simpson's trip to speak to students at Oxford University next week would be better spent by charities that help battered women.
She called on British publicist Max Clifford to reconsider his offer of payment to Simpson, which reportedly includes first-class air fare and all accommodations. Allred also cited an unconfirmed report that Simpson would get a $75,000 appearance fee.
"I am revolted and appalled by the press reports that suggest that Orenthal James Simpson will be traveling to England shortly to appear on British television and to address students at Oxford," Allred said.
She spoke at the grand opening of a San Juan Capistrano thrift store that will donate proceeds to the Nicole Brown Simpson Foundation.
"It is . . . difficult to fathom why people of good conscience would subsidize the trip of a convicted wife batterer and a man who was accused of double murder," Allred said. "Rather than assisting in helping Mr. Simpson to try to repair his damaged public image, they should assist mothers to find safety from husbands who have broken their bones and destroyed their lives."
Nicole Simpson's parents, Lou and Juditha Brown of Dana Point, and her sisters, Dominique and Denise, also attended Sunday's gathering at the opening of Somethin' Old Somethin' New, but spoke only briefly of the England trip.
"If they are dumb enough to spend money to hear him, I pity them more than anything else," Lou Brown said.
Simpson, who was acquitted in 1995 of murdering his ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend Ron Goldman, reportedly will address the Oxford Union, the debating society of Oxford University.
He will also make a speech to a group of the students, have dinner with them and answer questions, according to Allred.
Doreen Whitcomb of Laguna Niguel, owner of the new store, said she will donate 25% of its gross proceeds to the foundation, a charity for battered women.
Simpson pleaded no contest in 1989 to battering Nicole Brown Simpson.
Whitcomb, 38, whose children met the Simpson children at church, was one of the first volunteers for the charity.
"I think what [Whitcomb] is doing for the foundation is wonderful," Denise Brown said.