Even as former football hero OJ Simpson waits for his parole date in October, a Planet Hollywood memorabilia store owner on the Las Vegas Strip says it has a signed collectible picture of Simpson that the Hall of Famer tried to reclaim in the infamous 2007 robbery at Palace Station.
The 8-x-10 inch photo of Simpson running track at USC is listed by Inscriptagraphs Memorabilia for $799. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence.
It is also signed by one the victims, Bruce Fromong, who even went as far as writing the exact hotel room number, 1203, where the incident had occurred. The custom-framed photo also comes with the police department’s evidence card and a certificate of authenticity.
The disgraced celebrity was found guilty of armed robbery and sentenced to nine to 33 years for the crime. He was granted parole in July and could be released as soon as October 1.
Tyler Feldman, CEO of the memorabilia company, did not disclose how he obtained the item, but said he had been in possession of it for about a month.
“We’ve experienced a major spike in desirability for his items ever since there was even talk of him getting granted a parole hearing,” Feldman noted.
Simpson and five associates learned that Fromong and another businessman were at the Palace Station Casino and went to their room to try to reclaim 534 personal and collectible items he claimed were stolen from him. Two of the men brandished handguns during the raid.
Despite not having a firearm, Simpson got the longest prison term. Ironically, his sentence began 13 years to the date from his exoneration from double homicide charges in the murders of his wife, Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend, Ron Goldman. The court case, which was televised worldwide, was dubbed, “The Trial of the Century.
While at northern Nevada’s Lovelock Correctional Facility, a medium security state prison in the desert 100 miles northeast of Reno, the 70-year-old has been described as a model prisoner. He was coach for a softball team and routinely instructed fellow inmates.
In July, Simpson underwent his third parole hearing: the two previous attempts failed to secure his freedom. This time, however, Simpson was contrite and said he’s “not a guy who lived a criminal life.”
The four-person panel heard testimony from his oldest daughter, Arnelle, and surprisingly Fromong, who told the board he did not harbor any ill will towards his attacker.
“If O.J. calls me and says he gets out tomorrow, Juice, I’ll be here tomorrow for you,” Fromong, who is also a memorabilia dealer, said. The testimony at Simpson’s parole hearing caused the prisoner to turn around and look at Fromong, while wiping tears from his eyes.
Simpson had said previously that he would most likely move to an unnamed part of Florida to be near family and friends when he is released, which could be as early as Oct. 1. But given the power of Hurricane Irma sweeping through the state this weekend, that plan may need to be rethought.