Published Wednesday, July 31, 2013 | 9:47 a.m.
Updated Wednesday, July 31, 2013 | 10:25 a.m.
CARSON CITY — Former football star O.J. Simpson, who has served five years behind bars, has cleared the first hurdle for his release from prison.
The state Parole Board announced today that it is paroling Simpson, 66, from his sentences for kidnapping, robbery and burglary. But he still has a minimum of four years to serve on other weapons charges resulting from his Las Vegas conviction.
Four of the seven members of the board said the reason for approval included that Simpson had no prior or minimal criminal conviction history, he still must serve other consecutive sentences and he has had a “positive institutional record.”
Simpson, incarcerated at the Lovelock Correctional Center about 90 miles from Reno, told the Parole Board last week that he has not had any disciplinary actions filed against him in prison.
He said he has been involved in work programs cleaning rooms and mopping floors and has counseled other inmates to keep them out of trouble.
In 2008, Simpson, along with others, entered the hotel room of memorabilia dealers Bruce Fromong and Al Beardsley at Palace Station in Las Vegas. He said he wanted to reclaim items stolen from him.
At his parole hearing, Simpson said he has made peace with the dealers and has put the incident behind him.
Parole Board Chairwoman Connie Bisbee and Commissioners Susan Jackson, Adam Endel and Tony Corda voted for parole.
Still pending is a petition by Simpson to overturn his convictions on grounds that his trial lawyer failed to mount an adequate defense. Clark County District Court Judge Linda Bell has not ruled on that petition for a new trial.