Just as he eluded tacklers during his NFL days, O.J. Simpson avoided a media frenzy by being freed from a Nevada prison during the early hours of Sunday morning.
Simpson was released after serving nine years for a botched 2007 hotel-room heist in Las Vegas that brought the conviction and prison time he avoided in the killings of his wife and her friend after his 1995 acquittal.
Nevada state prisons spokeswoman Brooke Keast told the Associated Press that Simpson was released at 12:08 a.m. PDT from Lovelock Correctional Center in northern Nevada. She said she did not know who met Simpson upon his release and didn’t know where Simpson was immediately headed.
“I don’t have any information on where he’s going,” said Keast, adding she had no indication where he was immediately Sunday.
Keast said, the dead-of-night release from the prison located about 90 miles (145 kilometers) east of Reno, Nevada, was conducted to avoid media attention.
“We needed to do this to ensure public safety and to avoid any possible incident,” Keast added, speaking by telephone.
The 70-year-old Simpson gains his freedom after being granted parole earlier this year. Unlike the last time he went free 22 years ago, he will face restrictions — five years of parole supervision — and he’s unlikely to escape public scrutiny as the man who morphed from charismatic football hero, movie star and TV personality into suspected killer and convicted armed robber.