In anticipation of O.J. Simpson‘s parole hearing on Thursday, where the former football star could be granted his freedom after serving nine years for armed robbery, LawNewz Network host Amy Dash spoke with Alan Dershowitz, one of Simpson’s “Dream Team” attorneys from his 1994 murder case. Dershowitz discussed Simpson’s current situation, where he faces a maximum of 33 years in prison if he is not paroled. Dershowitz believes that the robbery sentence was overly harsh, and was based on Simpson’s past, even though a jury found him not guilty of murder after a lengthy criminal trial.
“I have absolutely no doubt that the sentence he got in Nevada reflected the crime he was acquitted of in California, nobody gets that kind of a long sentence for going and trying to retrieve stolen material,” Dershowitz said, noting how Simpson claims that the sports memorabilia he and friends stole at gunpoint originally belonged to him. “The additional years plainly in my view was punishment for getting away with murder in California.”
Dershowitz said that he hopes the Nevada parole board sees it this way. “I hope he’s released as quickly as possible because he shouldn’t stay in jail as a result of his acquittal in California.”
As far as the robbery itself, Dershowitz said, “Look he’s done a lot of foolish things….he’s made a lot of foolish mistakes in his life but it’s not a crime to be foolish.”
Dershowitz also addressed a statement to Simpson, his former client. “Please, please, stay out of trouble. Go back to your family, live your life quietly out of the public light and try your best to just stay out of any trouble because people are out to get you.”
The LawNewz Network has continuing coverage of the parole hearing with interviews and analysis throughout the day, including a live stream of the hearing itself at 1:00 pm ET/10:00 am PT.
[Screengrab via LawNewz Network]