OJ Simpson was released from prison on parole in October, after serving nine years at Lovelock Correctional Center in the middle of nowhere, Nevada. In his first few weeks back in the free world, the former NFL star and actor has found a new home in suburban Las Vegas, which has some locals angry, but others excited to meet “The Juice,” now that he’s loose.
The 70-year-old parolee, who was acquitted of the 2003 murders of his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ron Goldman, was spotted recently at Red Rock Casino Resort in Summerlin. Red Rock is owned by Station Casinos, the same company that owns the Palace Station casino resort, where his 2007 felony burglary and kidnapping occurred. These crimes resulted in convictions that landed him in prison for nine-to-33 years.
Many on social media were surprised to learn that Station Casinos hadn’t banned Simpson from its properties. Local ABC affiliate KTNV Channel 13 reached out to Station Casinos to learn whether the company was aware that Simpson was visiting at least one of its locations. A spokesperson for Station Casinos said they were gathering additional information.
Juice is Loose
OJ’s presence in a casino poses multiple questions. While the Nevada Board of Parole deemed him to be a low-risk candidate for committing additional crimes or otherwise violating his parole, the general public might not feel the same way.
For casinos, it’s unknown whether Simpson’s appearance would be good or bad for business. There certainly seems to be enthusiasm on both sides.
Those posing with Simpson seem more than elated to snap a selfie with a celebrity, The Juice. But others commenting online asked why anyone would want a photo with a man many still believe to be a murderer. Vital Vegas, a popular social media outlet that covers Las Vegas nightlife, called the fandom pics “gross.”
Another Twitter commenter posted, “Hey Juice, which is harder? Picking two NFL winners against the spread or killing two people in the same night?”
Simpson is planning to return to Florida eventually, where he has family, and is waiting to become eligible to leave Nevada. But Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi said she’s working to block such an arrangement, telling reporters recently, “Our state should not become a country club for this convicted criminal.”
Betting on OJ?
Simpson is on parole for five years. If he violates any of his parole conditions, he’ll be sent back to Lovelock Correctional Center for the remainder of his sentence.
Online sportsbook Bovada was offering odds on the chances of that happening. “No,” OJ won’t violate parole was the heavy favorite (-550) to “Yes” at +325. The line has since been removed from the online sportsbook.
Simpson’s parole conditions bar him from associating with other convicted felons, possessing weapons, using or possessing illegal drugs, and consuming alcohol “to excess.” Excess is defined as a blood alcohol content test result of 0.08 percent or more, the legal limit for driving.
There is no stipulation of his parole that forbids gambling.