O.J. Simpson To Be Sentenced In Oct. Conviction O.J. Simpson is scheduled to be sentenced Friday in Las Vegas for his conviction on felony charges, including kidnapping, in a robbery committed last year. The former football and movie star — acquitted of murdering his ex-wife, Nicole, and her friend Ron Goldman 13 years ago — could get up to life in prison.

O.J. Simpson To Be Sentenced In Oct. Conviction

O.J. Simpson To Be Sentenced In Oct. Conviction

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/97843646/97843657" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

On Oct. 3 , O.J. Simpson was convicted on 12 charges, including felony kidnapping, armed robbery and conspiracy. He stood trial at the Clark County Regional Justice Center in Las Vegas. Daniel Gluskoter/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Daniel Gluskoter/AFP/Getty Images

On Oct. 3 , O.J. Simpson was convicted on 12 charges, including felony kidnapping, armed robbery and conspiracy. He stood trial at the Clark County Regional Justice Center in Las Vegas.

Daniel Gluskoter/AFP/Getty Images

In October, a jury in Las Vegas found O.J. Simpson guilty of 12 felonies related to a robbery he and six other men committed last year. Friday morning, the former football and movie star — who became a courtroom celebrity acquitted of murdering his former wife, Nicole, and her friend Ron Goldman — is scheduled to receive his punishment in the robbery case.

According to recently filed court documents, Nevada's Division of Parole and Probation will recommend 18 years.

Simpson is now 61. More than a year ago, he led a group of men — two of whom had guns — to a room at the Palace Station Hotel and Casino. Inside, sports memorabilia dealers Bruce Fromong and Alfred Beardsley had boxes of things, including signed Simpson footballs and family photos. Simpson wanted the items, so he had a friend, Thomas Riccio, arrange a meeting. Riccio made an obscenity-laced audio recording of what happened next.

The tape captures Simpson saying, "Think you can steal my [obscenity] and sell it? Don't let nobody out of here."

That comment led to charges of kidnapping, assault and robbery after Simpson and his friends left with boxes of items — including things that never belonged to him. Four of Simpson's partners turned and testified against him in exchange for reduced charges. One, Clarence "C.J." Stewart, stood trial with Simpson.

Throughout the trial, District Judge Jackie Glass was notably harsh with the defense, but she told jurors not to punish Simpson now because they thought he might have gotten away with murder before. "The case that we are trying here is totally separate from what happened in that case," she said.

Facing Maximum Of Life In Prison

It took the Vegas jury 13 hours to convict both men on all of the charges. Since then, Simpson has been sitting in a cell awaiting sentencing. The likely minimum is six years; the maximum is life.

Even Simpson's own lawyers say he was stupid to attempt the robbery. But defense attorney David Figler, a former Las Vegas municipal judge, says 18 years for someone with no prior convictions is over the top. "Given all the circumstances and what we have to accept as the lack of criminal history of all the parties involved," Figler says, "probation would always be on the table, or something along the lines of one or two years."

Glass likely will lecture Simpson, as she is known to do before imposing a sentence. Simpson will probably appeal. The grounds are expected to be that it was an all-white jury for the two black defendants.

Simpson's co-defendant, Stewart, likely will ask for a new separate trial because he was tied to a celebrity. Figler says he may get one — and both men may get the state Supreme Court to drop one charge. "I think the Nevada Supreme Court would have a hard time feeling that kidnapping was really one of the things that occurred in this exchange and this demand for the merchandise," Figler says.

No one was injured, and even the two victims have said it was all a mistake. So why was Simpson prosecuted so harshly?

"I don't know," Figler says. "I don't know, other than who wants to be the one who let O.J. go again?"

Not the prosecutors in Clark County, Nev.

O.J. Simpson's History In The Spotlight

1947: Born July 9 in San Francisco.

1968: Heisman Trophy winner.

1969-77: Professional football player (halfback for Buffalo Bills and San Francisco 49ers).

1974-94: Appears in movies, commercials; sports commentator for ABC and NBC

June 12, 1994: Simpson's ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend Ronald Goldman are found dead in Los Angeles.

Oct. 3, 1995: Simpson is acquitted of two counts of murder in Los Angeles.

February 1997: Simpson is found liable for damages in wrongful death lawsuit. Ordered to pay $33.5 million to estates of Goldman and Nicole Brown Simpson.

July 1997: Bank claims Simpson's Brentwood, Calif., mansion in foreclosure sale. Goldman family lawyers seek Simpson assets to satisfy civil judgment.

Feb. 16, 1999: Simpson's Heisman Trophy, other memorabilia auctioned; bidder later sets them on fire.

Oct. 24, 2001: Simpson cleared of all charges in a Florida case involving an alleged road-rage incident.

Nov. 20, 2006: Publisher cancels book If I Did It. Simpson calls ghostwritten book a fictional account of how he might have killed his ex-wife and her friend.

July 30, 2007: Federal bankruptcy judge in Miami awards the rights of Simpson's canceled book to the Goldman family to satisfy wrongful death judgment.

August 2007: Memorabilia dealer Alfred Beardsley calls collectibles broker Thomas Riccio to arrange sale of Simpson items in Las Vegas.

Aug. 21, 2007: Riccio tells FBI that Simpson plans to confront a collector he believes is peddling stolen Simpson memorabilia.

Sept. 13, 2007: The Goldmans publish Simpson's book as If I Did It: Confessions of the Killer. Simpson and five others — Clarence "C.J." Stewart, Walter "Goldie" Alexander, Michael "Spencer" McClinton, Charles Ehrlich and Charles Cashmore — confront memorabilia dealers Beardsley and Bruce Fromong at the Palace Station casino hotel. Beardsley, Fromong report an armed robbery.

Sept. 18, 2007: Simpson, Cashmore, Alexander and McClinton are charged with nine felonies, including kidnapping.

Sept. 19, 2007: Simpson is freed on $125,000 bail, returns home to Miami.

October 2007: Cashmore, Alexander and McClinton take plea deals, agreeing to testify against Simpson.

Nov. 28, 2007: Simpson, Stewart and Ehrlich plead not guilty.

Aug. 4: Ehrlich takes plea deal, agrees to testify against Simpson.

Sept. 8: Jury selection begins for Simpson and Stewart.

Sept. 15: Trial testimony begins.

Oct. 3: Simpson and Stewart found guilty of all charges.

Sources: Biograhical reference sources, AP reporting, Las Vegas police arrest reports, Clark County District Court, Las Vegas Justice Court records