Simpson Case Judge And Lawyers To Meet About Hearing For Defendants
Saturday, September 29th 2007, 7:59 pm
By: News On 6
LAS VEGAS (AP) _ Prosecutors and defense attorneys representing O.J. Simpson and his co-defendants are scheduled to meet privately on Monday with a justice of the peace to schedule a preliminary hearing for the six men.
A member of Judge Joe Bonaventure Jr.'s staff confirmed that he will meet with attorneys in chambers to discuss the cases of the men accused of robbing collectors of hundreds of thousands of dollars in sports memorabilia.
A preliminary hearing may not be held. Defense attorneys have received notice that prosecutors might instead conduct a secret grand jury hearing to determine if there is enough evidence to send the six to District Court.
Simpson and co-defendants Clarence Stewart, Walter Alexander, Michael McClinton, Charles Howard Cashmore and Charles Ehrlich face multiple counts of kidnapping, robbery, assault, burglary and conspiracy in connection with the alleged Sept. 13 robbery.
A preliminary hearing for Simpson and his co-defendants would allow defense attorneys to cross-examine each witness and present their own witnesses.
A grand jury hearing would allow prosecutors to expedite the indictment process and avoid the media. A defendant would have the right to testify at such a hearing but would not be present while prosecutors presented their case to the secret jury.
According to a Las Vegas police report, Thomas Riccio arranged a meeting between two collectors, Bruce Fromong and Alfred Beardsley, and a client to sell Simpson's mementoes and other athletic memorabilia.
Riccio's client turned out to be Simpson, who entered a Palace Station hotel room with five other men, two of whom were armed. They left with the memorabilia and Fromong's hat and cell phone, the report stated.