Victim of O.J. Simpson Vegas robbery accused of shoplifting
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One of the sports memorabilia dealers whom O.J. Simpson was convicted of robbing in a down-market Las Vegas hotel is now fighting his own court battle.
Bruce Fromong, who testified against Simpson in the 2008 armed robbery trial, is accused of shoplifting from the Nellis Air Force Base Exchange near Las Vegas, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported. He is scheduled to appear in court Monday.
Authorities say that in October, Fromong swiped a Madden football PlayStation game from its package and a Case Logic briefcase; and that in November he removed another Madden disc from its package, taped up the box and put it back on the shelf.
In 2007, Fromong and Alfred Beardsley had gone to the Palace Station hotel expecting to sell Simpson collectibles to a wealthy buyer. The meeting was a ruse. Simpson and a ragtag band of men –- two of them armed -– stormed into Room 1203 and scooped up dozens of items. Simpson claimed he was merely trying to get back memorabilia stolen from him.
Fromong made for a particularly interesting witness. He and Simpson had been such close friends, he said, that the football star used to sing ‘Happy Birthday’ to Fromong’s mother over the phone. But defense attorneys attacked him as a leech hoping to cash in on Simpson’s infamy. A recording captured Fromong telling someone minutes after the robbery: “I’ll have ‘Inside Edition’ down here for us tomorrow. I told them I want big money.”
Jurors quickly convicted Simpson, who had been acquitted years before in the slayings of his ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend Ronald Goldman. A Las Vegas judge sentenced the former football star to between nine and 33 years in prison.
-- Ashley Powers in Las Vegas
Photo: Then-Clark County Dist. Atty. David Roger, left, questions Bruce Fromong during O.J. Simpson’s robbery trial in 2008. Credit: Daniel Gluskoter / EPA