O.J Simpson, the former disgraced American NFL player has been granted parole after nine years behind bars. ‘The juice’, as he was known in his glorious days in the NFL shot to the world podium in what back then was referred to as the ‘Trial of the Century’. That was back in 1995 when his wife, Nicole Brown Simpson was found murdered by stabbing alongside her friend Ronald Goldman. O.J burst into the limelight when he was arrested for the double homicide and tried in what turned out to be the biggest media spectacle of the time. The Hall of Fame sports personality was then tried in a long running battle that was among the first trials to be shot for live television. He put up one of the most expensive defenses even though the disgrace that the accusations had brought his way would be hard to undo. There was a feeling back then among part of the American society that O.J was being unfairly judged and scrutinized for a number of reasons. The biggest argument being that he was subjected to humiliation by virtue of being a successful black man that had married a white woman.
The sportsman was acquitted of the murder charges after a long and publicized battle in court and some felt justice had been denied in this case. Among the biggest and most controversial court sessions was when he was made to try on gloves that had been found at the murder scene and suspected of belonging to the perpetrator. Lucky for him, they were too small to fit his hands.
Fast forward to 2008 and bad luck seemed to follow the fallen athlete ever since that trial in 1995. The former star was convicted of 12 counts and sentenced to 33 years in jail from a 2008 trial ruling that found him guilty of among others, robbery, assault and conspiracy. This is after he and other men in his company were accused of holding up a hotel at gun point in an attempt to recover what O.J termed as his personal sports memorabilia from his NFL days. The sentence had seemed harsh to some and as an attempt to punish him for the 1995 trial.
Recently, O.J Simpson was a subject of a parole hearing that filed in his favor for early release as he was found to meet all the prerequisite requirements an inmate requires to be granted parole. He managed to garner the support of four out of the seven parole commissioners that sat to hear his case. The hearing created a light moment when one of the commissioners confused his age for 90 instead of 70 years old. The now aged star still maintains that he was doing what he thought was right at the time although he apologized for his behavior and let it known that he had learnt from his past. He also highlighted that he was now a reformed man who had served his sentence as well as anyone could. Simpson is said to have scored between 0-2 points in the point system used to gauge an inmates suitability for parole. It also helped that his family testified for him as well as Bruce Fromong, one of the sports memorabilia dealers he was accused of robbing who testified that O.J never pointed a gun at him, one of his accomplices was the one who did. Neither he or his family members present could hide their joy after his parole hearing ruling has been read out. The star is expected to be formally released in October after serving 9 out of the 33 years that were his sentence.