Who Is Marcia Clark's First Husband? Gabriel Horowitz Was Part Of Her Life Before The Simpson Trial


If there's a hero to be found in The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story, it's prosecutor Marcia Clark. Played by American Horror Story regular Sarah Paulson, Clark is capable and confident, even if she finds herself unprepared for the media circus the Trial Of The Century causes. The show drives it home that, at the time of the Simpson case, Clark was going through a divorce from Gordon Clark. However, Tuesday's episode also mentions that Clark had been married prior to that, so who is Marcia Clark's first husband?

According to the Washington Post, Marcia Clark was married to a professional backgammon player named Gabriel Horowitz. The two met while Clark was attending UCLA, and were married for five years. According to a profile of Clark in The Guardian, their eventual marriage was allegedly motivated by logistics. Horowitz hailed from Israel and needed a green card. "It was not a happy union – although he never slapped or punched her, their relationship was defined by shoving and arguments," The Guardian reported.

A frank section of Clark's 1997 memoir Without A Doubt recounted her years with Horowitz. In an excerpt hosted by Backgammon Galore, Clark calls Horowitz "a womanizing cad," but also "the most incredibly handsome man I had ever seen." The romance was a whirlwind, and Clark admits to being caught up in her new live-in boyfriend's expensive, carefree lifestyle. Between parties, Horowitz would teach Clark how to play backgammon; she'd sit next to him at swanky bars and observe while he hustled rich marks with his skills at the board game. The shine faded when Horowitz became possessive and Clark pursued her own interests and studies. "Even now, I'm hard put to explain why I married him," Clark wrote, saying she made him promise their wedding would be a secret.

"When she told me she was getting married, it wasn't why him, but why at all? But there is this part of her that has always wanted to be settled down that way," Clark's longtime friend Roslyn Dauber told The Washington Post in 1995. The law student was only 23 when she tied the knot with Horowitz. In Without A Doubt, she writes that a "real" wedding occurred a year later. The relationship deteriorated steadily as Clark "discovered the healing powers of work;" meanwhile, Horowitz was increasingly down on his luck.

A backgammon student of his was a member of the Church of Scientology and suggested that Horowitz might find some peace in it. Horowitz was reprimanded for making advances to the female students in his courses, and that was the final straw for Clark. "When I left Gaby, I was destitute," she wrote in her book. "In spite of that, I was happy." In Without A Doubt, Clark also explained that she and Horowitz divorced in Tijuana in 1981 so that she could marry Scientology administrator Gordon Clark.

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In the book that American Crime Story is based on, The Run Of His Life: The People v O.J. Simpson, Jeffrey Toobin writes that a strange incident further changed Horowitz's life. While he and Bruce Roman — the very student who invited him to Scientology classes — were cleaning a gun, it discharged and ricocheted into Horowitz's head, leaving him paralyzed. Horowitz moved back to Israel before Clark became a household name, and little information about his recent history is publicly available.

Though American Crime Story isn't digging this far into Clark's past, the attorney's autobiography indicates that her marriage to Horowitz was a defining experience of her life.