Sunday, September 24, 2023
Courthouse News Service
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OJ to Go Behind Bars

LAS VEGAS (CN) - O.J. Simpson was sentenced to at least 9 years in prison Friday for robbing two sports memorabilia dealers in a hotel room last year. Before sentencing, a shackled, raspy-voiced and teary-eyed Simpson apologized to the court.

"I stand before you today sorry, somewhat confused," Simpson told Clark County District Court Judge Jackie Glass through tears before sentencing. "I wasn't there to hurt anyone. I'm sorry, I'm sorry for all of it," Simpson said, visibly choking up.

Before handing down her sentence, Glass gave Simpson a tongue-lashing.

"Earlier in this case ... I said ... I didn't know if he was arrogant or ignorant or both," Glass said. "During the trial and through this proceeding, I got the answer, and it was both."

Simpson's last-remaining co-defendant, Clarence "C.J." Stewart, at least 7.5 years behind bars.

Both were convicted by a jury of non-blacks on Oct. 3 on all 12 counts against them, including armed robbery and kidnapping, for stealing thousands of dollars worth of sports memorabilia from Alfred Beardsley and Bruce Fromong at the Palace Station Hotel in September 2007.

Under Nevada law, both will be up for parole. Simpson could serve as many as 33 years, but won't be eligible for parole until after serving nine years. Stewart could serve as many as 27 years, but won't be eligible for parole until 7.5 years.

The verdict came exactly 13 years after Simpson was acquitted in 1995 for the 1994 stabbing deaths of his ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend, Ronald Goldman. Simpson was later found liable for the deaths in a 1997 civil lawsuit and ordered to pay the Goldmans $35 million.

Ronald Goldman's father, Fred Goldman, and his sister, Kim, wept when the verdict was read.

"It's a bittersweet thing," Goldman said at a news conference outside the courthouse while 300 protesters shouted obsenities at him and waved offensive banners. "It was satisfying seeing him in shackles where he belongs."

When asked if the verdict brought him closure, Fred Goldman replied: There's never closure. Ron is always gone. What we have is satisfaction that this monster is where he belongs behind bars."

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