O.J. Simpson after his conviction in October/Las Vegas Metro Police photo/Las Vegas Sun
Former NFL star running back O.J. Simpson fell several more notches from glory and grace today. A tearful and somewhat remorseful Simpson was sentenced on kidnapping and armed robbery convictions by Las Vegas Judge Jackie Glass.
On October 3, Simpson and his friend and co-defendant, Clarence C.J. Stewart, were convicted of 12 charges stemming from their involvement in a confrontation with two sports collectibles dealers in a Las Vegas hotel room in September of 2007. Simpson claimed he was only trying to get back personal items that had been stolen from him.
Today in court, 61-year-old Simpson said he was ” sorry” and expressed regret for his actions. Still, Judge Glass sentenced the 1968 Heisman Trophy winner to a number of prison terms that confused many. Lead defense attorney, Yale Galanter estimates his client’s sentence amounts to a minimum of nine and perhaps as long as 33 years behind bars. Afterwards, Galanter told reporters it was a sad day for the defense, but overall, “we’re pleased … could have been worse.”
Co-defendant Stewart got off a bit lighter. His combination of prison terms could mean he would be eligible for parole in seven and a half years. Both Stewart and Simpson could have been slapped with life sentences.
Among those in court to hear Simpson get sentenced, Fred Goldman and his daughter Kim. Goldman’s son, Ron, and Simpson’s ex-wife, Nicole, were brutally murdered in 1994. Simpson was tried, but acquitted of both murders in 1995.
Outside the courtroom, Fred Goldman said today’s sentencing did not make up for what he considered a wrong verdict in the double murder trial, however, he was thrilled with the Vegas trial outcome. The long prison sentence for Simpson is “bittersweet, ” but Goldman says he ‘s satisfied that, “…this monster is where he belongs.”
Both Simpson and Stewart attorneys plan to file appeals as soon as possible.