O.J. Simpson was in a Las Vegas court room Wednesday where he pleaded not guilty to charges of kidnapping and armed robbery. Co-defendants and alleged contributors to the robbery, Clarence “C.J.” Stewart and Charles “Charlie” Ehrlich, also submitted pleas of not guilty. A trial date has been set for April 7, 2008.
Between the three defendants, twelve charges lodged against them — accumulating in enough evidence for a judge to determine they stand trail in the alleged robbery of sports memorabilia dealers.
During the hearing Wednesday, witnesses offered stunning testimony from two men said they were robbed at gunpoint and three former co-defendants who took plea deals for their testimony.
Simpson, Stewart and Ehrlich each face kidnapping, armed robbery, assault with a deadly weapon, burglary, coercion and conspiracy charges. A kidnapping conviction could bring a life sentence with the possibility of parole. An armed robbery conviction carries mandatory prison time.
Defense attorneys lost a bid during an earlier hearing to get any charges dismissed, despite claims they were based on accounts by “crackheads and groupies and pimps and purveyors of stolen merchandise and gun carriers and con artists and crooks.”