O.J. Simpson's parole hearing set for July; release could come soon

O.J. Simpson in 2013. (Getty)
O.J. Simpson in 2013. (Getty)

O.J. Simpson, in prison since 2008 for his role in a Las Vegas hotel robbery, will have a parole hearing on July 20. If the parole board approves of Simpson’s petition for release, he could be free on Oct. 1.

Simpson has served more than eight years of a nine-to-33-year prison sentence in connection with a fight in a Las Vegas casino hotel room in September 2007. Simpson had been free following a 1995 acquittal in a nationally publicized trial for the murder of Simpson’s ex-wife Nicole Brown and Ronald Goldman. He was later found liable for their deaths in a civil lawsuit, and ordered to pay $33.5 million to their estates.

However, Simpson claimed that memorabilia and family mementoes were stolen from him during the course of those two trials. Acting on a tip that those mementoes were in the hands of dealers willing to meet at a hotel room in Vegas, Simpson and several associates encountered the dealers. Simpson and the associates were arrested on charges of armed robbery, kidnapping and related charges.

Several of the associates flipped on Simpson, saying there were guns involved. Simpson testified that he was not aware that guns would be present at the meeting. Even so, Simpson was sentenced to serve his time at Lovelock Correctional Facility in Nevada.

Simpson will meet with four parole officers in Carson City, Nevada, via teleconference. Simpson’s attorney, Malcolm LaVergne, indicated to the AP that Simpson would likely lead a quiet life were he to be released on Oct. 1.

That seems unlikely. Interest in Simpson is at a 20-year high thanks to both a dramatized version of the murder trial and an Oscar-winning documentary. Individuals made famous as a result of his trial (i.e. the Kardashians) remain in the public eye. And a click-driven, celebrity culture that was only in its nascent stages in 1995 is in full flower now. Expect to be hearing a lot more from, and about, O.J. Simpson in the coming months.
Jay Busbee is a writer for Yahoo Sports and the author of EARNHARDT NATION, on sale now at Amazon or wherever books are sold. Contact him at jay.busbee@yahoo.com or find him on Twitter or on Facebook.

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