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What happened to white Ford Bronco in O.J. Simpson car chase? It ended up in crime museum

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The world stopped on June 17, 1994. And on live television, one of the most dramatic events in American pop culture history unfolded.

The scene: a slow-speed chase featuring a white Ford Bronco on an empty highway in California with scores of police vehicles in pursuit.

Inside that now-famous vehicle? O.J. Simpson, the former NFL running back turned media star, who had been charged with the murders of Nicole Brown Simpson, his ex-wife, and Ron Goldman days earlier. Friend Al “A.C.” Cowlings drove while Simpson was on the phone in the backseat with a loaded gun.

Everybody knows what happened to Simpson between then and his death at age 76 from prostate cancer, which his family announced Wednesday. But what about that 1993 white Ford Bronco?

What happened to the white Ford Bronco in the O.J. Simpson chase?

The car was not Simpson’s. It belonged to Cowlings. Simpson and Cowlings actually drove identical cars, but Simpson’s had been seized as part of evidence-gathering for his upcoming trial.

A 2014 USA TODAY exclusive story reported that Cowlings instructed Don Kreiss, a friend of his who worked for a sports agency, to sell it. Kreiss connected with memorabilia collector Michael Kronick. But Cowlings backed out of the deal and Kronick took him to court. Kronick sued Cowlings for damages in excess of $200,000, and they reached an undisclosed settlement in 1996.

Two months later, Stanley Stone, Cowlings’ attorney, said the car was sold for $200,000. Stone did not initially identify the buyer, but the vehicle ended up with another one of his clients named Michael Pulwer.

How a ‘porn king’ got the white Ford Bronco

Pulwer, who made his money in pornography and was called “a porn king” by family, was an associate of Cowlings. Pulwer told a cousin he purchased the vehicle to help out Cowlings, who filed for bankruptcy in 1997. Pulwer apparently did not think the Bronco held value and the car sat in the underground parking garage at The Westford, a luxury condominium complex in Los Angeles where Pulwer lived. Apparently, the car sat idle so long pressure leaked out of the tires.

The white Ford Bronco reappears in 2010s

In May 2012, the Bronco resurfaced. From USA TODAY’s 2014 story: “The Bronco appeared in Las Vegas, outside the Luxor hotel on The Strip. It was there to help publicize the opening of SCORE!, a sports memorabilia museum and exhibit. Six months later, the Bronco appeared in Greenwich, Connecticut. It was at the Brant Foundation for an exhibit featuring artist Nate Lowman, who has used a topless picture of Nicole Brown Simpson in his work.”

As the 20-year anniversary of the murders of Brown and Goldman approached, USA TODAY’s search for the vehicle came up empty. It didn’t appear to be with Pulwer in Florida, where he had moved.

“I think we should care more about the people who were killed than the white Bronco,” Pulwer told the New York Daily News.

White Ford Bronco appears on ‘Pawn Stars’

In August 2017, not long before Simpson was released from a Nevada jail for committing an armed robbery, the white Ford Bronco was featured on an episode of “Pawn Stars.” Mike Gilbert, a former Simpson agent, said he bought the vehicle from Cowlings.

Gilbert turned down a $500,000 offer and said he’d never sell the vehicle for less than $1 million.

White Ford Bronco now resides in museum

Next to Ted Bundy’s Volkswagen Bug and John Dillinger’s red Essex Terraplane, the 1993 white Ford Bronco now resides in the Alcatraz East Crime Museum in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee.

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