O.J. Simpson wants out of the clank.
He hopes to achieve an early exit with a new trial after his 2008 conviction for bursting into a $35-a-night Las Vegas hotel room and stealing signed photos of himself and other sports memorabilia.
The former NFL star — who was cleared of killing his ex-wife and her friend in 1995 — says his lawyer Yale Galanter screwed up the armed robbery case that resulted in a 33-year prison sentence, the Associated Press reported Friday.
Simpson, who’s now 65, will argue to a Vegas judge next week that Galanter gave him terrible legal advice and failed to inform him of a plea offer that would have gotten him out in two years.
Galanter also told Simpson it was totally legal for him to “retrieve” sports memorabilia he believed was stolen from him, according to the former NFL player.
“I fully disclosed my plan to Yale Galanter,” Simpson said in a sworn statement, “and he advised me that I was within my legal rights.”
Simpson gained infamy in the 1990s, when his televised trial for allegedly killing his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ronald Goldman captivated America. His 1995 acquittal stunned a lot of lawyers, and people are still obsessed with the murder case. A book even came out recently speculating Simpson’s son was actually the killer.
The more recent robbery case against Simpson got a lot less attention, but it’s also pretty bizarre. Simpson was arrested in September 2007 for breaking into the the Palace Station casino-hotel with five other men, The New York Times reported at the time. At least two guns were confiscated from the group, which was robbing a “cadre of collectors,” according to the AP.
In a strange twist, one of those collectors told the AP he had considered Simpson a close friend. Simpson insisted that he and his alleged accomplices were involved in a “self-organised sting” to take back memorabilia that belonged to him including books and photos he’d signed.
Judge Jackie Glass, however, described the scene as a violent confrontation that could have killed somebody. After handing down her 33-year sentence (with the possibility of parole after nine), she insisted she wasn’t influenced by Simpson’s previous acquittal, the AP reported at the time.
“I’m not here to try and cause any retribution or any payback for anything else,” Glass said.
Fred Goldman, the father of the man Simpson allegedly killed, said at the time that he was “thrilled” that he was finally being put behind bars, according to the AP.
“It was satisfying seeing him in shackles like he belongs,” Goldman said.
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