July 20 (UPI) — Members from the Nevada Board of Parole on Thursday will meet to decide whether to set free former football star — and onetime accused double murderer — O.J. Simpson.
Simpson, 70, has been imprisoned at the Lovelock Correctional Center for nearly nine years on convictions of armed robbery and kidnapping related to some of his football memorabilia. He was ordered to serve a term of nine-to-33-years on 12 convictions, with a chance at release in October.
Four members of the parole board will gather at 10 a.m. local time Thursday to discuss Simpson’s case at the Probation and Parole Division office in Carson City, Nev. During the meet, Simpson will remain at the Lovelock prison, about 90 miles northeast of Reno, the parole board said.
The hearing will be streamed live.
The former athlete and actor’s conviction stemmed from a September 2007 armed robbery at a Las Vegas hotel, where Simpson went with a group of associates to retrieve some of his own personal sports memorabilia that he said had been stolen from him in the 1990s. Much of the incident was recorded.
Simpson’s imprisonment happened more than a decade after his scandalous acquittal in the brutal 1994 knife killings of his ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend Ron Goldman at her Bundy Drive condominium in west Los Angeles.
Simpson — a star player at the University of Southern California in the 1960s and one of the NFL’s best running backs in the 1970s for the Buffalo Bills — was a highly popular figure prior to the killings, owing to a number of appearances in television and films, including “The Towering Inferno” (1974) and “The Naked Gun” trilogy. For years, he was also a main pitchman for Hertz rent-a-car.
Debate over Simpson’s role in the double murder has continued since his 1995 acquittal. Thursday, former Los Angeles prosecutor Christopher Darden encouraged the former athlete to confess what he did.
“Admit your sins,” he advised on NBC’s Today show. “We have yet to extract from him the punishment that he deserves. … Justice ain’t killing two people and butchering two people and getting away from it.”
If the board grants Simpson parole, he would be released from prison on Oct. 1.
“If you are really reformed and rehabilitated, if you are really remorseful, if you are really a born-again Christian, then let’s move this discussion forward,” Darden said, noting he would like the parole board to ask Simpson if he’s guilty of the murders.