Oct. 1 (UPI) — O.J. Simpson, Pro Football Hall of Fame member and convicted felon, was released from the Nevada prison in Lovelock where he’s spent the last nine years serving his sentence for armed robbery and kidnapping.
The Nevada parole board voted to grant Simpson an early release on July 20, 2017. Sunday, October 1, was the earliest Simpson could be released, and at 12:08 a.m. PDT, prison officials opened the gates of the Lovelock Correctional Center and allowed Simpson to go free.
Over the weekend, some news reports suggested Simpson was on the move as early as Saturday — from prison facility to prison facility — with prison officials aiming to free Simpson with as little media attention as possible.
Ultimately, Simpson walked out the doors of the same facility where he has spent the last nine years. However, the former standout running back was let go late at night to avoid press.
It’s not clear who picked Simpson up or where he is headed.
A close friend of Simpson, Tom Scotto, has offered to put the infamous star up at his house in Florida. Prior to his arrest and conviction, Simpson resided in Florida for several years. He he told parole board members he preferred to return to Florida. Two of Simpson’s four children live in Florida.
Florida’s attorney general issued a statement last week saying Simpson was not welcome in the state.
Where ever he ends up, Simpson will remain under parole supervision for up to five years.
In 2008, the former University of Souther California star was convicted of armed robbery and kidnapping after he and several associates attempted to retrieve personal items from a pair of sports memorabilia dealers. He was sentenced to 33 years in prison for his role in the incident.
The items, including signed photos and other personal belongings, were eventually turned over to Simpson by Nevada officials after they were determined to belong to him.
After winning the Heisman Trophy at USC, Simpson went on to a series of successful seasons as running back for the Buffalo Bills. Upon retiring from football, Simpson turned his sites on Hollywood. The icon starred in several T.V. shows and movies.
His reputation and relationship with the American public took a turn for the worse when he was arrested and charged for the slaying of his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend, Ronald Goldman. In a court trial that was one of the first to be broadcast live on television, Simpson was acquitted of the charges.