Friday, December 05, 2008

Simpson being sentenced

After he was convicted of kidnapping and armed robbery in October. His own lawyer, Yale Galanter, says to the judge, "Stupidity is not criminality."

Simpson is speaking now: I'm stupid. I didn't mean for anyone to get hurt. I love Las Vegas. His voice is shaky and small. I didn't come here intending to do this. Thank you, Judge.

Lawyers all apologizing to the judge and telling her what deep respect they actually have for her, even though they were, er, extremely argumentative during the trial.

Coincidentally, I was just re-reading Triumph of Justice, Daniel Petrocelli's account of the civil case against Simpson for the murders of his wife and Ron Goldman, which proved far beyond a reasonable doubt that Simpson was guilty (those ugly-ass shoes).

Various lawyers pleading for leniency for various of Simpson's henchpersons. It was O.J.'s fault. My client has health problems. My client didn't have a gun. Nobody was hurt. My client was getting a cake. He supports his whole family. He likes to try to help people.

Clarence Stewart, minion: I didn't know what was going on. I love everybody, respect everybody. I've never been convicted of a crime before. Always provided for my extended family. I've lost everything because of this case. I've survived my incarceration through faith and prayers. Judge looks to be listening hard.

Judge: I didn't know whether Simpson was arrogant or ignorant. During the trial I found it was both. You (Simpson) thought you could do in Las Vegas what you couldn't do elsewhere. The tapes in this case show you didn't want these (sports memorabilia) items to fall into the hands of the Goldmans, whom you called the "Gold-diggers." Your own words can be heard on those tapes, and they brought you to this courtroom. They said to me and the jury that the evidence was overwhelming. Overwhelming. It was a very violent event, all on tape. Guns were brought, at least one gun was drawn. The potential for harm was huge. If a gun had gone off, and bullets started flying, people besides those in the room could have been hurt. You cannot do that. But you did.

I heard Mr. Galanter say, oh, he was just stupid. When you go to take something by force, that's not just "gimme my stuff back."

After the event, you called people (minions) to say "there was no gun." Then, at the party (after the incident, there was laughing, joking, "did you see the look on his face? Ha-ha!" That was not just stupidity.

You went to the room, you took guns, you used force, you took property. In this state, that is robbery with a deadly weapon.

I told the jury earlier, if they wanted to punish Simpson earlier (the murders), they shouldn't be here. I'm not punishing Simpson for what happened before. . . .

There's nothing more that's going to happen here except sentencing for what's happened in this case. No retribution or payback for anything else.

The problem is, I can't ignore that the crime was reckless, the potential for harm was great, you're fortunate nothing happened. And now I'll sentence you.

Judge tells Stewart and Simpson to stand. Goddamnit she's reading too fast. Stewart is nailed.

Simpson is going away for 15 years, six before parole eligibility. Everything "enhanced" because of general egregiousness. Simpson is 61.

Now Court TV or whatever it's called is saying a minimum of seven and a half years. Reporter also saying the judge imposed a less severe sentence than the presentencing report recommended--18 years total--perhaps because of Simpson's statement ("I was stupid").

Fox: Simpson was sentenced 13 years to the day after he was acquitted at the murder trial. Whoa, karma (as Geraldo de Rivera y Bronx said).

Update: Can't hang around too much longer, but Fox is going to have Mark "N-word" Fuhrman on to comment.

Fuhrman: Watching OJ over the years, it was inevitable that something like this would happen. The judge certainly put it in a nutshell: ignorant and arrogant. What we saw over the last 14 years is who he is, a street thug.

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