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Simpson renews quest for freedom with court hearing

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Updated: 5/13/2013 9:55 am
LAS VEGAS (KSNV -- O.J. Simpson’s quest for a new trial to overturn his 2008 robbery conviction begins this morning at the Regional Justice Center.

Simpson was convicted in 2008 for robbing two sports memorabilia dealers at gunpoint inside a Palace Station hotel room. The hearing this week will be before Judge Linda Bell.

Click here to follow the court hearing live.
“It's just an overwhelming case, and so he's just not going to be able to meet his burden in my opinion,” said former Clark County District Attorney David Roger, who prosecuted the case and secured a conviction against the most high-profile defendant in county history.

“As a result of all the evidence, the jury took one day to deliberate.”

Roger knows in many cases a guilty verdict is not the end of the road.

Simpson has asked for a new trial, saying his attorney, Yale Galanter, was incompetent.

One example of that: Simpson says he would have taken a plea bargain but was never told by Galanter the D.A. made an offer.

Roger says that claim is not true.

“We went back to Galanter and said if O.J. is willing to do 30 months in prison, we'd have something to talk about,” Roger said. “There wasn't a formal offer; we just wanted to get the lay of the land from Yale Galanter. He came back the next day and said O.J. will take no more than 12 months. And I said, OK, there's nothing more to talk about.”

To win a new trial, Simpson will have to prove two points: that his attorney did a bad job and that competence would have made a difference and a different lawyer would have won an acquittal.

Roger says with the evidence he presented, this case was a slam dunk.

“We had audio tape of the actual event,” he said. “O.J. Simpson yelling and screaming in that room as he's scooping up all the property at gunpoint. We have audio tapes from his post robbery meeting where he's telling everybody to deny they used weapons during that robbery.

“And then, of course, we have all of his co-defendants testifying against him.”

Roger is now on the witness list to tell what he knows.

The court is setting aside a full week for this evidentiary hearing.
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