OJ Simpson was sentenced today in Clark County District Court, after previously being found guilty of multiple crimes arising out of an armed break-in and theft at a Las Vegas hotel. The details can be found in any news outlet you fancy. But what sentence did he get? The headlines are all over the place.
Some sources say he got 12 years. Many say 15 years. Some say 33 years. Some say 9 years. What gives?
The reason for the confusion is the fact that OJ was sentenced on 10 counts, with many of the sentences running concurrent, and some running consecutive.
Concurrent sentences are served at the same time. So if you get sentenced on two counts, one for 5 years and the other for 6 years, to run concurrent, then you only face 6 years. But if they were to run consecutively, then you’d be serving 11 years.
So how does OJ’s sentence break down?
First, the concurrent sentences:
Count 1: Conspiracy to Commit a Crime: 1 year
Count 2: Conspiracy to Commit Kidnapping: 1 to 4 years (eligible for parole after 1 year, max of 4)
Count 3: Conspiracy to Commit Robbery: 1 to 4 years
Count 4: Burglary While in Possession of a Deadly Weapon: 2yrs 2 mos to 10 years
Count 5: First Degree Kidnapping with Use of a Deadly Weapon: 5 to 15 years
Count 6: First Degree Kidnapping with Use of a Deadly Weapon: 5 to 15 years
Count 7: Robbery with Use of a Deadly Weapon: 5 to 15 years
Count 8: Robbery with Use of a Deadly Weapon: 5 to 15 years
So the concurrent sentences have a max of 15 years, with eligibility for parole after 5 years.
Next, the consecutive sentences:
Counts 5 to 8 add 1 to 6 years to run concurrently with each other, but consecutive to the rest
Count 9: 1.5 to 6 years consecutive to Count 8
Count 10: 1.5 to 6 years consecutive to Count 9
So add 1 + 1.5 + 1.5 = 4 years to the parole eligibility, for a total of 9
Then add 6 + 6 + 6 = 18 years to the max number, for a total of 33
So OJ is eligible for parole in 9 years, and could conceivably serve a maximum of 33 years.
Hope that clears things up.