By KEN RITTER
LAS VEGAS (AP) – O.J. Simpson could be released on parole as soon as Monday in Las Vegas under a plan being finalized by Nevada officials, a prison spokeswoman said Wednesday.
The process culminating in freedom for the former football player, actor and TV pitchman still must be approved and documents signed, state Department of Corrections spokeswoman Brooke Keast said.
Meanwhile, the 70-year-old Simpson remains at Lovelock Correctional Center in northern Nevada awaiting transfer to High Desert State Prison outside Las Vegas for release, Keast said.
Simpson’s release is expected after he spent nine years behind bars for his 2008 armed robbery and kidnapping convictions stemming from a hotel room confrontation with two sports memorabilia dealers. He was sentenced to up to 33 years behind bars.
In July, a state parole board set Sunday, Oct. 1, as the date Simpson becomes eligible for parole.
His release could come on the first business day after that because state probation officials don’t handle releases on weekends, said Keast, who said she intends to provide video to the public of Simpson’s release.
"We’ve been trying to keep things as normal as possible," she said.
High Desert State Prison is located in Indian Springs, about 45 miles from Las Vegas. It is the main processing center for inmates from southern Nevada.
A close Simpson friend, Tom Scotto, said Simpson is scheduled to be released "shortly after" Oct. 1. Scotto cast doubt on the Monday release date, saying officials were keeping plans secret.
Scotto has offered to have Simpson live with him in Naples, Florida. Such a move would require an agreement between parole departments in Nevada and Florida.
Nevada Parole and Probation Capt. Shawn Arruti, who is involved in Simpson’s release, and the Florida Department of Corrections did not immediately respond to messages seeking further details.
Malcolm LaVergne, Simpson’s lawyer in Las Vegas, also didn’t respond to questions about a release plan.
Simpson was acquitted in 1995 of murder charges in the 1994 slayings of his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ronald Goldman.
He was found liable for the killings in civil court two years later and ordered to pay the victims’ families $33.5 million.
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