Friday, December 05, 2008

Orenthal "O.J." Simpson & co-defendant Stewart Sentenced

Previous photo of OJ during the trial.

It's the day. OJ Simpson has been sentenced in Nevada.

One of Simpson's attorney's was wordy and went into a spiel about the civil
war, John Adams, then Abraham Lincoln pardoning southern soldiers before
he got to his point, which was "go easy on him."

Galanter spoke of worrying about payback, revenge, or retribution in
sentencing for the California verdict, for the Nicole Simpson and Ron Brown

He also said that his client's actions were stupid, but stupidity doesn't equal
criminality. He doesn't think the prosecution was out to "get" Simpson in any
way, and that Simpson is remorseful and apologetic.

Both of Simpson's attorney's asked for low sentencing.

The Prosecutor speaks to the court and states that he feels that although
Stewart participated, Stewart is less culpable than Simpson and places the
blame for the events squarely on Simpson.

OJ Simpson is being provided the opportunity to speak.

Simpson speaks with a low, teary voice. "I stand before you sorry, some
what confused. I feel like apologetic to the people of Nevada. I came to
Nevada when younger and I've never gotten into trouble here.

I came here for a wedding, I come here to reclaim property. I was told it
was here. I called my kids, my sisters, the Brown family, I told them I intend
to get some of my property back, property stolen from my home. We've called
the police and asked what to do, but could never find who could solve it.

I knew these guys. It was the first time to catch the guys who did this
redhanded but I had no hatred for Gilbert. Gilbert tried to set me up
before with the tabloids. I've forgiven these guys.

The only person I asked was Mr. Stewart. I needed his car. I asked him
to remove these things.

I didn't yell at anybody. I feel it was my fault, I brought them there. In
no way did I mean to hurt anybody. I talked to the police officers, I
volunteered to come back, show them what was taken. I don't want to
steal anything from anybody. I didn't want anybody else's stuff.

Mrs. Brown gave my daughter my mother's wedding ring. It was stolen.
All these things were gone. I don't want to hurt Bruce or any of these guys.
I've done book reports with their kids. I've sung to their mothers when they
were sick.

I'm sorry. I didn't know I was doing anything illegal. I thought I was
confronting friends. I was getting my property.

The only one I asked to be there was Mr. Stewart. All the rest of them
volunteered. One of them wanted to be a security guy, claims he was the
security guy. It was my fault that they were there. I brought them there.
I didn't mean to hurt anybody or steal from anybody. Thank you."

Simpson had spoken also of speaking to the individuals involved and that
they and he had apologized to each other.

Stewart's attorney thanks the Judge for dropping two counts.

Jones "Stewart is a good man. He was asked to help his friend, he did
assist. I would like to thank the court for dismissing counts 11 and 12."
He speaks of Stewart's health problems and that Stewarts' intention
that day was merely to help his friend. He has no prior convictions
and had minimal participation in the event. No egregious or aggravating
actions could be attributed to Stewart, nor that he had knowledge that
guns were going to be used. There was no bodily harm in the event."

He asked for minimum sentencing. "Stewart is remorseful, repentant
and has begun his way to rehabilitation. This is a good man. On the day
of this incident, Mr. Stewart was taking care of everybody else's business,
for people he didn't know. Taking someone to get a cake, to get a marriage
license, and at the end of the day he ended up in this situation. What he
was trying to do, was be helpful to his friend, as he had been helpful to all
the other people.

Clarence Stewart is the primary support for his family. He is a person who
likes to help people if he can. He asks for mercy. He's not a career criminal.
Not a rapist, not a murderer, merely a person trying to help his friend."

Clarence Stewart spoke. "I would like to apologize to the state of Nevada.
I did not intend to participate in any harm to these gentlemen. I did not
fully understand what was going to happen.

I respect everyone and wish them the best. Many lives have been changed.
My life has certainly be changed. I stand before this court a convicted felon.
I pray this court will sentence me to mercy. Prior to this I have not been
convicted of any crime. I have raised four children." He speaks of his grown
children and their occupations.

"I have tried to instill in them to avoid this kind of lifestyle. I have always
been the main financial provider for the members of my extended family.
As a result of these events I have lost all of my worldy possessions, I was
dismissed, my home is being sold, and possessions being repossessed.

Most of my family members are aged and it's likely I'll never see them
again. I'm 55 and my life has come to an end as a result of the events.
The only way I have been able to survive my incarceration is through
prayer. I ask for mercy, that I do not spend the rest of my life behind

He spoke of his attorneys, being dedicated men, neglecting their families.
"They have supported me, believed in me." The rest of Clarence Stewart's
statement was missed due to commercial and/or news anchor blather.

News anchors believe that Simpson's speech to the court was nothing more
than what is usual when perps get up in front of a judge after being caught.


In the bail hearing I told you, I didn't know if you, Mr. Simpson were
ignorant, arrogant, or both. During the trial I got my answer. It was both."

"At the bail hearing, you believed that you could do what you did in Vegas,
what you couldn't do elsewhere. Get your stuff back. Who's stuff it is, is still
in dispute.

The tapes indicated to me, that you didn't want all of those items to fall
into the hands of the Goldmans. You were heard on the tape making
reference to them as the gold diggers.

That was then. This is now.

You put your group together and went to get your items back. What you
and Mr. Stewart didn't know, was that the planning and the event was
taped. Phone calls were taped. Conversations were taped. Video tape of
you going in and out, and the party afterwards were taped. Everything
in this case was on tape.

It's your own words Mr. Simpson that could be heard throughout those
events that have brought you here, to this seat in my courtroom. We
heard it all. What came out on the tapes said to me, and obviously to the
jury, that the evidence was overwhelming. It was overwhelming. How
often as a judge do I get to sit and hear everything laid out for me to hear.
It's very rare.

The event in the room - I went to that room. It was a little bitty room.

There were a lot of you big guys in that little bitty room. When I heard the
tape, that was not an "oh, just give me my stuff back. I want my stuff."

"Nobody leave the room." That was a very violent attempt."

I don't care what Beardsley or Fromong says now, we heard what occurred.
Guns were brought. At least one gun was drawn. The potential for harm to
occur was tremendous. I don't know how fortunate you consider yourself to
be, but if guns had gone off, workers or tourists walking down the hall could
have been hurt. you can't take back your property by force. You can't do it.
There's no self help. You cannot do it. But you did.

When you take a gun with you, and men with you in a show of force, that's
not just "hey, give me my stuff back. That's something else, and that 's why
we're all here. We can't say "Oops it's okay. No problem. Don't worry, no
harm, no foul."

After the event, the realization hits and there are phone calls made.
"There was no gun. There was no gun." Mr Simpson made those phone
calls. "There was no gun." Why would he make those phone calls except that
he realized that, "Oops, I might be in some trouble."

At the party. At the party, the laughter, the joking. Did you see the look
on his face? Hah Hah Hah. Isn't this funny?"

Judge Glass shakes her head. "You knew what was going on there.
You knew."

"Mr. Stewart you got caught up in something. I don't know how much you
knew but clearly Mr. Simpson knew."

Judge Glass addresses Simpson:
"I see a very different attitude after you've been locked up for 64 days.

I am surprised that I heard from you Mr. Simpson. I had believed that I
wasn't going to hear from you. I was going to be concerned about your lack
of responsibility. It's a fine line. I heard what you say. "I didn't intend to
do something wrong, so there wasn't anything wrong. It was just stupidity."

"It was much more than stupidity."

"It's very rare for someone in a trial to talk about criminal intent. It doesn't
matter. You went to the room. You took guns. Meaning you and the group.
You used force. You took property. Whether it was yours or someobdy elses.
In this state that is robbery with deadly intent. Whether you or someone else
had the gun.

When I spoke to the jury, I told them, if they wanted to punish Mr. Simpson
for what happened previously, they were here for the wrong reason.

I meant that. I'm not here to sentence Simpson for what happened in his life

In hundreds of trials I've presided over, I have great respect for the criminal
justice system. As a judge who has taken jury verdicts for years. I respect the
verdict of my jurors. I have to respct the jury decision years ago.

There are people who disagree with that verdict. But that doesn't matter to me.

What matters to me, is that the State brought charges. A trial was conducted.
Evidence was heard. Testimony was received. The jury deliberated and they
reached a verdict.

I have to respect that verdict as well.

There's nothing more that's going to happen here, other than a sentence for
you, Mr. Stewart, and for you Mr. Simpson, based on the evidence that
occurred in this case. I'm not here to try and cause any retribution, or
payback for anything else. I want that to be perfectly clear to everyone.

Because if I did, I wouldn't be doing my job as a judge, who presides over a
courtoom, in this jurdisiction.

The problem is, that, I can't ignore the behaviour at the time, was reckless
and disregarded the law. The law was broken. Force was used. A gun was
used, another gun was there. The potentional for harm was great. Property
was stolen.

The jury convicted you, and now I'll sentence you."

Judge Glass went through each count for Mr. Stewart.
All of the counts are concurrent and he received credit for time served,
64 days.

Judge Glass went through each count for Mr. Simpson.
All of the counts are concurrent and he received credit for time served,
64 days.

Concludes sentencing. Adjourned.

Simpson's attorneys made other motions. Judge Glass "All motions denied."

According to TruTv (Formerly CourtTv) anchors who are also attorneys,
"Stewart was sentenced to 15 years to 27 years. There is a requirement
that he be incarcerated at least 7 1/2 years before he's eligible for parole.

"OJ sentenced to 9 to 33 years in prison, and will have to serve 9 years
before he is eligible for a parole hearing.

That doesn't mean they'll get out, but they will see the parole board at
that point. The pre-sentencing report by the Dept. of parole and probation
recommended an 18 years sentence. Judge Glass handed down a sentence
at the low end of the scale and was much more generous than Simpson might
have expected.

Simpson is 61, and will be pushing 70 when he sees the parole board.

Both Stewart and Simpson are in the Clark County Detention Center, and
within 3 days they will be transferred to High Desert for assessment, for
psychological testing, and then placed.

Greta Van Sustern "Some people think Simpson was set up. But regardless,
if you are set up, and you go through with it, that's your problem."