O.J. Simpson Back in Trouble Again-Arrested for Kidnapping and Robbery Charges for Stealing Sports Memorabilia of Him!
If you ran afoul of the law and were acquitted from murder charges while in the center of one of the highest-profile criminal trials in modern history, you would probably learn your lesson and stay low for a good long time.
But for O.J. Simpson, a Hall-of-Fame running back in the NFL and notorious celebrity of the greatest modern media circus surrounding a criminal trial, apparently 12 years was long enough to stay out of the criminal limelight.
On the night of September 13, Simpson and three associates, who were all in Las Vegas for a friend’s wedding, allegedly arranged a meeting with sports memorabilia dealers Alfred Beardsley and Bruce Fromong in their hotel room in the Palace-Station Hotel-Casino. At the meeting, they reportedly held up the two dealers at gunpoint and knifepoint, seizing sports items such as autographed photos and footballs, including some signed by Simpson himself.
Simpson was taken into custody by police officers for questioning following the incident, and was eventually arrested on September 16 on charges of felony armed robbery, assault and conspiracy. Simpson was initially held without bail as police attempted to apprehend all of the individuals involved in the theft.
A total of five men, including Simpson, were arrested and charged. Simpson and the three cronies who were with him in the break-in face eleven criminal charges in all, ten felonies and one gross misdemeanor: two counts each of first degree kidnapping with a deadly weapon, robbery with a deadly weapon and assault with a deadly weapon; and one count each of conspiracy to commit a crime, conspiracy to commit robbery, burglary while in possession of a deadly weapon and coercion with a deadly weapon.
If Simpson and his associates are convicted on all counts, each man faces the prospect of many years in prison. The first-degree kidnapping charges alone can bring a term of life in prison.
While many of the items that were stolen include items that commemorate Simpson’s football career, police reports show that some of the items involved Simpson’s prior 1995 criminal trial, specifically, ties that Simpson wore in the courtroom.
A recording of the incident was made by Thomas Riccio, one of Simpson’s associates who deals commercially in sports memorabilia. Riccio had made the recording because of past misdealing with Beardsley, suggesting that Riccio was apparently not aware of the twist the meeting would take.
In the recording, Simpson is reportedly identified as one of the men, allegedly shouting profanity and threatening the dealers, and claiming that he owned the memorabilia related to him.
After initially being held without bail, Simpson was granted a release on $125,000 bond. According to Simpson’s criminal defense attorney, the former football star plans to plead not guilty to the charges.
And, much as before, the media circus has begun with action in all three rings. Television news networks have been saturated again with coverage of Simpson’s purported misdeeds, as they descended on the police department where Simpson was being held, trying to capture video of Simpson as he left on bail and have begun reporting the minutiae of the case as it proceeds.
As always, you can rely on Total Criminal Defense to provide a reasoned perspective on the new Simpson legal troubles, so keep returning for more on the O.J. Simpson robbery case as it develops!