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Old 08-07-2009, 08:09 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default O.J. Simpson Could Be Released During Appeal of Memorabilia Dealer Robbery Conviction

O.J. Simpson Could Be Released During Appeal of Memorabilia Dealer Robbery Conviction


The key figure in one of the most publicized legal cases involving Sports Memorabilia - and an even more well-known murder trial - could be freed by the courts while his case is appealed.

O.J. Simpson is the figure in question, and the state of Nevada is considering an appeal of his conviction on charges of kidnapping and assault with a deadly weapon stemming from an incident in Las Vegas in September 2007. The former Buffalo Bills and USC star led a group of men, some armed with guns, who confronted memorabilia dealers Bruce Fromong and Alfred Beardsley over what Simpson claimed was a legitimate attempt to recover items taken from him without permission.

The courts decided otherwise, sentencing Simpson to nine to 33 years and associate Clarence Stewart to 7 1/2 to 27 years behind bars. Now both men could be receiving temporary releases while their trial is reviewed.

It's not common for someone already serving time to be released on bail while an appeal is pending - the Nevada Supreme Court hasn't considered a request of this type for almost three decades - but the justices are trying to determine if there were enough irregularities in the original trial to warrant such a move. Simpson's attorneys have raised questions about bias on the part of both the judge and members of the jury as the basis for their appeal.

Another issue is whether or not Simpson and Stewart should be considered flight risks if they post bail, a definite cause for concern since the last person to be released under similar circumstances did just that. But Simspon's team has argued that his fame would make it impossible for him to disappear.

With NFL records and a Heisman Trophy to his name, Simpson was a popular figure among football collectors for years. That changed when he was accused of murdering his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and friend Ronald Goldman in 1994, leading to arguably he most famous murder trial of the 20th Century. Though Simpson was acquitted, his notoriety made him taboo in the sports world.

The running back's most recent appearance in an officially licensed NFL product came five years ago, when he was the subject of a 1-of-1 cut signature card in 2004 Topps Signature Football.

By Nick Tylwalk

Last edited by blowoutcards; 08-07-2009 at 08:12 AM.
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