O.J. Simpson will be taking the stand on Wednesday as he seeks a new trial to overturn his 2008 convictions. Watch HLN for the latest and follow along with the live blog of his testimony on HLNtv.com.
O.J. Simpson returned to a Las Vegas courtroom Monday in an effort to overturn his 2008 convictions for armed robbery and kidnapping on the basis that he received bad legal advice.
In court filings, Simpson accuses Yale Galanter, his attorney during the robbery case, of failing him in numerous ways. Simpson is expected to take the stand on his behalf during this week’s hearing, which could stretch five days.
If successful at the habeas corpus hearing, Simpson could be granted a new trial for charges related to an incident in which the former football star tried to reclaim memorabilia he claims was stolen from him.
Gabriel Grasso, Simpson's co-counsel during his robbery trial, testified Monday that he believed Simpson had no "intent" to commit robbery.
"The plan was to go in, identify the stuff and call the cops," Grasso said. "O.J. had no intent to commit a robbery in this case."
Grasso said Simpson also did not know that there were firearms present in the room when he confronted the men that allegedly stole his property.
Simpson is currently serving a 33-year prison sentence, and he will be eligible for parole after nine years.
Grasso called Simpson's relationship with Galanter as "caustic," giving the example that Simpson would try to talk to Galanter at trial, but he would tell Simpson to "shut up."
Galanter allegedly failed to pay Grasso for his work on the case, and now Grasso is suing him for over those unpaid fees.
Simpson claims Galanter represented him despite a conflict of interest, improperly advised him not to testify and failed to communicate to Simpson that there was a plea offer on the table.
Grasso said he thought Simpson had to testify during his trial, and it may have made the difference in jurors' minds.
"I said hell yes you are going to testify. I felt he was our best chance to win this case," said Grasso. "I had no doubt O.J. should testify, because he could explain his state of mind."
“The combined derelictions of counsel allowed highly prejudicial argument[s] and inadmissible evidence before the jury, as to which counsel unreasonably failed to seek to limit, to object and to request curative or limiting instructions," wrote Simpson’s current attorney Patricia Palm in habeas corpus petition. "Trial counsel also failed to competently investigate and prepare a defense, advise Simpson regarding a plea offer, advise him regarding the benefit of testifying, advise him regarding his available defense strategies, present available testimony and evidence to support his defense, including expert testimony, request jury instructions that supported the defense, and move for severance.”
Galanter may take the stand to explain his actions and decisions while he was representing Simpson.
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Simpson will testify Wednesday that Galanter advised him that he was within his legal rights to take the memorabilia back.
“Simpson fully disclosed his plan to Yale Galanter, and Galanter advised him that he was within his legal rights and could lawfully go forward with the plan, so long as he did not make any uninvited entry into property of another and did not use physical force to take the property if the sellers would not return the property upon demand,” reads Simpson’s habeas corpus petition. “However, Simpson also contends that Galanter did not advise Simpson that carrying out the plan could subject him to criminal charges, regardless of his ownership of the property.”
Simpson was famously acquitted on murder charges for killing his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman on October 3, 1995.