Loyola Law School paid tribute to Johnnie L. Cochran, Jr., one of its most famous alumni, at a tribute last Friday at Loyola Marymount University in Westchester. Cochran graduated from Loyola Law in 1962. The tribute included a panel discussion with various legal officials and Loyola Law alumni Brian Dunn, an attorney with The Cochran Firm, spoke about Cochran’s vision, contributions and legacy. In addition, the first Loyola Law Johnnie L. Cochran, Jr. Public Service Award was presented to the Rev. James Lawson in recognition of his civil rights work.Cochran was a master in the courtroom, and gained prominence as an early advocate for victims of police abuse before he became famous for successfully defending O.J. Simpson. The televised trial was billed as “the trial of the century.”Among his other well-known clients were Sean “P. Diddy” Combs Michael Jackson, actor Todd Bridges, football player Jim Brown and rappers Tupac Shakur and Snoop Dogg. Cochran died at his home in Los Angeles on Tuesday, March 29, 2005 of an inoperable brain tumor.On January 24, 2006, Los Angeles Unified School District officials unanimously approved the renaming of Mount Vernon Middle School, Cochran’s boyhood middle school, as Johnnie L. Cochran, Jr. Middle School, saying he was an “extraordinary, superb lawyer with movie-star celebrity status.”
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