Los Angeles police are investigating a knife that was allegedly found on the former property of O.J. Simpson to see if it has any connection to the 1994 double homicide of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman.
The Los Angeles Police Department said Friday it only learned of the knife within the last month. The knife had been in the possession of a former LAPD officer who claimed he was given the knife in the late 1990s.
According to police Capt. Andy Neiman, the knife was apparently found by a citizen -- possibly when Simpson's former house in the Brentwood neighborhood of Los Angeles was being demolished -- and then turned over to the officer, who was working as a security guard at a filming location.
It is unclear why the now-retired officer didn't produce the knife sooner.
"I was really surprised," Neiman said Friday at a news conference at LAPD headquarters. "I would think that an LAPD officer would know that any time you come into contact with evidence, you should and shall submit that to investigators."
Simpson was acquitted in the stabbing deaths of his ex-wife and her friend in 1995.
The murder weapon has never been identified and Neiman declined to give a detailed description of the knife. He said investigators are working to determine its authenticity and to make sure the story isn't "bogus from the get-go."
Crime lab experts are examining the knife and will test it for hair and DNA samples, Nieman said.
Nieman said he didn't believe Simpson could be charged with murder a second time if tests done on the knife linked him to the killings that occurred on June 12, 1994.
"I'm not an attorney, but it's my understanding from being a police officer for nearly 30 years that double jeopardy would be in place here," Nieman said.
Attorney Carl Douglas -- a member of Simpson's legal "Dream Team" -- called the news of the knife "ridiculous."
"It's amazing how the world cannot move on from this case," Douglas told the Los Angeles Times on Friday. "And it, and the media, is apparently still fascinated by everything O.J. Simpson."
Alan Dershowitz, who served as an appellate advisor for Simpson's defense, also called the story "highly suspect."
"Where has the knife been? Who has handled it?" Dershowitz asked, according to the Times. "It's totally suspicious when there is no chain of custody. ... Courts don't generally allow for that type of thing."
Though Simpson was found not guilty at the criminal trial, a civil court jury found him liable in 1997 and awarded a wrongful death judgment of $33.5 million in damages to the victims' families.
Simpson was a beloved sports figure prior to the murders of Brown-Simpson and Goldman. He was a Heisman Trophy winner at USC in 1968 and starred in the NFL as a Hall of Fame running back for the Buffalo Bills before finishing his career with the San Francisco 49ers.
Simpson, 68, currently is in a Nevada prison after being convicted of armed robbery and kidnapping in a 2008 incident.