OJ Simpson to face Nevada parole board Thursday
Ethan Miller/Getty Images(LOVELOCK, Nev.) — O.J. Simpson is set to face a Nevada parole board Thursday, and if he’s granted parole, he could be a free man later this year.
Simpson, 70, is expected to appear remotely via video conference from Lovelock Correctional Facility in Nevada, where he’s serving time for kidnapping and armed robbery.
If the former football star is granted parole on Thursday, his earliest possible release date would be Oct. 1.
If he is not granted parole, commissioners will decide the date of the next parole board meeting, which could be as far away as five years.
Thursday’s hearing is set for 1 p.m. ET.
Simpson’s football career took him from the University of Southern California football to the Buffalo Bills. Following his retirement, his celebrity status catapulted him to movie stardom and a cushy Brentwood, California, mansion.
More than 20 years ago, Simpson went on trial for the killing of his ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend, Ron Goldman. The two were found on June 12, 1994, stabbed to death at her Los Angeles home. On Oct. 3, 1995, at the end of a televised trial that captivated the nation, Simpson was acquitted of all criminal charges. He has always maintained his innocence.
A civil jury later ordered Simpson to pay $33.5 million in damages after finding him liable for wrongful death in the double murder.
Simpson is in prison following an arrest in 2007 during a botched robbery in Las Vegas, when he led a group of men into a hotel and casino to steal sports memorabilia at gunpoint. The former football star contended the memorabilia and other personal items belonged to him.
He was charged with a number of felony counts, including kidnapping and armed robbery. He was found guilty and sentenced to up to 33 years in prison.
His bid for a new trial in the case was rejected in 2013, but he was granted parole that same year on some of the charges, based on good behavior. He was not released from prison at that time, since his prison sentences were set to run consecutively. Simpson had to wait until this year to appear again before the parole board.
Simpson’s friend, Tom Scotto, told ABC News that Simpson is “hopeful.” Scotto said if Simpson is freed, he would want “to just keep a low profile, be with his kids, be with his family, play golf.”
A July 14 statement on behalf of Ron Goldman’s father, Fred Goldman, and sister, Kim Goldman, released by their publicity firm, said: “Fred and Kim Goldman anxiously await” Simpson’s parole hearing.
“While they respect the legal process, they are feeling both frustration and anticipation over how this will change their lives again should Simpson be released. As with all victims and survivors, they will remain patient and optimistic that the system will do what is necessary to ensure the public’s safety remains a priority and that proper justice will be served,” the statement read.
Goldman’s family told ABC News earlier this year they cannot bear the idea of Simpson as a free man.
“Disgust,” Fred Goldman said when asked what it would look like to him if Simpson was paroled.
Added Kim Goldman, “He committed a horrible heinous crime, and I have no feeling except rot in hell.”
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