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O.J. Simpson Granted Parole. Aired 3-3:30p ET

Aired July 20, 2017 - 15:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


[15:00:03]

JEFFREY TOOBIN, CNN SENIOR LEGAL ANALYST: I didn't mean to interrupt you.

AREVA MARTIN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: If the lead -- if the lead detective is proven to be a racist, that means something. And it should mean a whole lot, and it did mean a whole lot.

And Johnnie Cochran exposing that was his brilliance. And the state didn't prove its case. Case over. They don't prove their case, you should be acquitted.

TOOBIN: I was with you for the first half of what you said. Johnnie Cochran did a brilliant job, and Mark Fuhrman was a racist, and Mark Fuhrman lied about use of the N-word.

And O.J. was still guilty. And there was ample evidence, in my opinion, for the jury to find that he was guilty. I mean, that's all I'm saying.

(CROSSTALK)

TOOBIN: That's a disagreement we're going to have until the end of time.

(CROSSTALK)

TOOBIN: I'm sorry. Go ahead, Mark.

MARK GERAGOS, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Yes, remember the old saying. Beyond a reasonable doubt is that we have a standard in this country where we will let nine people who are guilty go free, so that we do not convict one innocent. That's what the definition of beyond a reasonable doubt is.

MARTIN: And, Jeffrey, you accept the jury verdict in other cases. Why is this case different? Why are people having such a difficult time with O.J. Simpson, when the jury has an opportunity to review the evidence, you had skilled prosecutors presenting the case, they made a decision?

How come people can't accept that decision, where we accept jury decisions in thousands of cases every day in this country?

(CROSSTALK) TOOBIN: No, I accept the jury's verdict. I recognize that was the jury's verdict. But I don't have to agree with it.

I disagree with jury verdicts all the time. That doesn't mean that the jury verdicts are wrong. That's just my opinion about them. Certainly, it is -- that was the verdict in the case. I certainly accept it in that sense. But do I agree with it? Absolutely not.

And I think every citizen who follows this case, you know, has a right to an opinion. But -- and my opinion was that the jury got it wrong. But I certainly accept the jury's verdict. It's official and it counts and it's over, but doesn't mean it's right.

MARTIN: It's not over.

BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN ANCHOR: So, what about a discussion of, you know, moving forward. I mean, the man is, you know, granted parole. He will walk out of this Lovelock correctional facility at some point as early as October.

What will -- Jeffrey Toobin, what will his life be like? It's my understanding he will continue to enjoy a healthy NFL money and Screen Actors Guild from his life on the big screen.

TOOBIN: Well, I think his life will be a lot like what it was like from 1995 to 2007, which was basically a pariah from his old life as an actor, as a sportscaster, as a pitch man.

But, you know, the last I heard, his pension was something like $300,000 a year, which is plenty comfortable to live on. He lives in Florida, which has bankruptcy laws that will allow him to protect virtually all of his money from the Goldmans and the Browns from their civil judgment.

That's a principal reason, as I understand it, why he moved from California to Florida. And, you know, his life will be very much more seedy and less glamorous than it used to be. And he will be surrounded by these leeches, these memorabilia dealers, these creeps he was involved with that got -- that, you know, were in that Las Vegas hotel.

That's going to be his life, selling memorabilia, selling his signature, doing interviews for money. It's a far cry from the old, you know, life in Brentwood, but it's a hell of a lot better than being in Lovelock prison.

(CROSSTALK)

MARTIN: Well, Brooke, I hope his life is more reflective of what we heard from his daughter. She talked about the support from his family. She talked about the support from his friends. I have read a report that he plans to live with his younger daughter, who's graduated from Boston University.

And I hope he has learned his lessons about being around those people that Jeffrey just referenced and that he does take to heart the -- you know, the desire to spend time with family and friends who really care about him and not allow those lecherous people to be a part of his life.

BALDWIN: To prey, yes.

MARTIN: This is a second chance. I hope he takes advantage of it to live a life, a peaceful life, under the radar, would be the best advice I think anyone could give him.

BALDWIN: Thank you, Areva.

Danny Cevallos, I haven't heard from you yet. Just listening to all of us, watching him and thinking of his future, what say you?

DANNY CEVALLOS, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Where do I begin.

How do I bat cleanup in this situation? I have so many things to talk about. First of all, I don't think this was as much of a slam dunk as Mark and Jeffrey suggested. I think, under Nevada's guidelines, yes, his risk factors were low, but this was the highest level of severity of a crime.

[15:05:00]

And because of that, that's why they had to look at all these sort of surrounding factors. Now, once you do that and you evaluate O.J.'s performance, which they're allowed to do, in talking about what he did, how would any of us grade that?

Is anyone here on this panel going to give him above a C in how he represented himself today, a C-plus maybe?

BALDWIN: We were saying earlier, why did he keep talking? Every time he spoke about not going to A.A., you're like...

CEVALLOS: Stop talking. Stop talking. And it's so frustrating, Paul, Mark.

When we talk to clients, you tell them how to behave yourself in front of a judge or a parole board, and they nod their head, and then they go and say, I'm going to do it my way. And that's exactly what O.J. did.

He figured he could explain himself. And you see this a lot. This was not the time to testify on the liability phase of the trial that happened nine years ago. This was the time for contrition, for remorse.

And I don't think he did a particularly good job of showing it. You know, one of the classic, classic things you tell your client not to say, don't say you're remorseful because you don't get to see your daughter graduate or you don't get to go to a wedding. That's not remorse. That's self-interest.

(CROSSTALK)

PAUL CALLAN, CNN LEGAL CONTRIBUTOR: Except for one thing, Danny. It worked, all right?

(CROSSTALK)

CEVALLOS: Well, it did, but my point is, Paul, is, I think this was a much closer call. It was never a slam dunk.

I think it did stand in doubt. And even the game system that the Nevada Parole Board needs four people unanimous. If any of them disagreed, it went to the full board, and then he could have lost.

BALDWIN: But whether you thought -- and when I watched the whole thing -- and I remember exactly where I was when I was watching this whole trial play out that you all were covering.

CEVALLOS: You were a child.

BALDWIN: I was in high school, but I remember very clearly, and whether you thought the glove fit or not, watching him today and watching, I forget, one of you referenced some of the softballs from the commissioners, you know, did you get the sense that any of them were almost starstruck by him and does that affect...

(CROSSTALK)

PHILLIPS: We know that one was a Kansas City Chiefs fan.

TOOBIN: I still have to...

(CROSSTALK)

CALLAN: As he pointed out.

TOOBIN: The guy -- the parole board member who was wearing the black shirt had a Kansas City Chiefs tie on. Now, it is true that O.J. was a star for the Buffalo Bills.

(CROSSTALK)

BALDWIN: You keep bringing this up.

TOOBIN: It would have been even more significant had it been a Buffalo Bills tie or he played at the end of his career or USC, where he was a star, or at San Francisco 49ers, where he ended his career.

But it was weird to have like -- you know, out of all the ties he could have worn, to wear an NFL tie?

BALDWIN: OK, moving past the tie.

TOOBIN: I'm sorry. I'm a little obsessed with the tie. What was the question?

(CROSSTALK)

CEVALLOS: Were they starstruck?

(CROSSTALK)

BALDWIN: The fact that this is O.J. Simpson that they are questioning.

TOOBIN: Yes, I mean, I think they seemed nervous.

BALDWIN: Was that a factor in the decision-making?

(CROSSTALK)

TOOBIN: They all seemed to be reading their questions, and none of them responded to what he actually said. He was listening.

(CROSSTALK)

TOOBIN: I mean, the thing I keep fixating on that he said that his claim that he had led a conflict-free life, you know, you don't have to be extremely attentive to this case or to this story to realize that is not a very accurate characterization of, you know, his life.

I mean, you know, most people in life do not have convictions for domestic violence. Most people don't have an ex-wife with multiple 911 calls saying it's O.J. Simpson, you have been here before, he's going crazy again.

Those are not obscure facts, especially since they were allegedly, supposedly steeped in...

(CROSSTALK)

BALDWIN: And his lawyer, maybe he's walking over to the microphone? let's see.

(CROSSTALK)

MALCOLM LAVERGNE, ATTORNEY FOR O.J. SIMPSON: Hello. How are you. Doing very well. Any questions?

Here's my intention. My intention is to come out and answer maybe a couple of questions for a few minutes and then I'm going to go back and spend time with Simpson's family and Mr. Simpson, and then I will come back out again, so this is going to be very brief.

So, anyway, if you're going to say something, you probably should identify your full name, your news organization and the parent company of the news organization before you ask, OK? Is that fine? Is that a fair deal? All right. How can I help you?

QUESTION: How important do you think Bruce Fromong's testimony was in the ultimate decision?

LAVERGNE: I think it was pretty -- it certainly didn't hurt and I think it was actually very influential that he came in and he did what he said he was going to do to me when I talked to him on the phone over the course of a couple of weeks, which is, he was going to testify favorably for Simpson. So, I think it was very, very good, and obviously, if he had testified

negatively, it kind of was going to be contradicted by what he had been telling me. That's kind of why I felt it was important to bring up that conversation with him to say what he's been telling me all along.

But right now, Mr. Fromong is there with Mr. Simpson's family. They're all talking right now. He actually would -- I asked -- Mr. Simpson actually wanted to see Mr. Fromong. Mr. Fromong wanted to see him, spend some time with Mr. Simpson.

It's not being permitted at this time for various respected reasons for the Nevada Department of Corrections. And so -- but they're friends. These are friends. They were friends. This was a big mishap.

[15:10:06]

So, I think it was actually very, very positive.

QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE)

LAVERGNE: What, in there? I don't think he said anything to me. You know, I mean, the mikes were right there. You would have caught it, but I don't think he said anything. He was just very happy. He obviously was very emotional, if you were looking at the cameras. He was very emotional.

So, next question.

QUESTION: Is he worried about how he's going to be received by the public?

LAVERGNE: Not at all. No.

He's been in the media spotlight since he was 19. If he didn't explain it at the -- if he didn't explain it on camera, he certainly explained it, you know, in private. So he's always used to dealing with media attention. That's never been a problem for him at all.

QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE)

LAVERGNE: Listen, do you know that Jeffrey Felix is a complete fraud? And everything that you said -- I was actually just watching you earlier this morning when you were giving your testimony.

QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE)

BALDWIN: Oh, did we lose it? OK. So we lost it.

Again, he said -- this is the attorney of O.J. Simpson. He was going to be brief, but he will walk back out to those cameras.

All right, let's take a pivot from the panel, go to Paul Vercammen sitting outside of Lovelock, Nevada, outside of this correctional center where O.J. Simpson has been for eight, eight-and-a-half or so years now.

And here's my question. Tell me about his life so far. We talk a lot about how he's been this model prisoner and it's my understanding he sort of counseled, you know, multitude of prisoners. Forgive me.

We're going back to the lawyer.

LAVERGNE: You have gone on and perpetrated a fraud for this Jeff Felix, who's supposedly guarding the Juice guy. You embarrass and make a mockery of the corrections officers over here, OK, who are actually doing a really good job.

And Mr. Simpson actually has very positive things to say about the Nevada Department of Corrections. The wardens all here have treated him great. They are very compassionate. In his words, they actually treated him terrific. OK?

This Jeff Felix is -- I mean, you see that mullet and how his hair's dyed, right? You don't buy credibility from people who are like that, who even look like that, all right? And you should have at least tried to vet the story. For the last year, you could have vetted the story.

I'm a little bit agitated when I see you -- not -- maybe I'm taking it personally because you were the one on the news repeating all this stuff that Jeff Felix said, every bit of which was false, every bit of which is unverifiable, every bit of which is untrue. But you were doing it this morning.

OK? So Jeff Felix is a fraud. I don't want to take any questions about Jeff Felix. I don't know what he -- I will tell you exactly what Jeff Felix is. He was here. He worked in the canteen, and Mr. Simpson, like every other inmate, when they go to canteen once a week would see this guy and he was kind of like a minstrel.

He would sit there and tell jokes. He wanted to impress Mr. Simpson and that's the end of it. He was never -- he doesn't -- he couldn't identify Mr. Simpson's cell, OK? Maybe he knows the unit because someone told him, but he couldn't even identify the cell.

And I have already got it in -- this has agitated me so much that I already have it in progress to strip this guy of his pension benefits. What goes on in this prison here between the Nevada Department of Corrections and its personnel, OK, is confidential. And he violated that by publishing that silly, ridiculous book that he did.

so I'm starting the process right now of getting his pension stripped. And if it isn't clear with the Nevada Department of Corrections or the (INAUDIBLE) whoever has the benefits now, the rules definitely need to be changed or clarified that when a corrections officer like Mr. Felix discloses confidential information -- of course, it's false, but even when he does so, based on someone's celebrity, you just get your pension benefits stripped.

So let's see how he likes that when he sees the consequences of his actions right now. I'm just going to yank all his pension benefits. Next question.

QUESTION: Did you expect O.J. Simpson to take such a defiant stance, especially in his early testimony, essentially relitigating the whole case?

LAVERGNE: I don't understand the question. What do you mean? How was he defiant?

QUESTION: He continued to insist that it wasn't his responsibility, that he had been bamboozled into the crime.

LAVERGNE: I disagree with your characterization of that. It was an explanation for what was going on.

You know, I don't think he -- he's taken plenty of responsibility. Any time something like this happens, you obviously wish you could do better. The biggest thing here, what made this case more so than what it was were the guns. OK?

And so that took this case from being kind of a, you know, somewhat of a laughingstock of a case to serious when guns are involved.

QUESTION: That it was his right, essentially, to go back there and get his stuff back. One would think that wouldn't...

(CROSSTALK)

LAVERGNE: I don't think he said it was his right. I think he said he wanted it and the stuff was his. I don't think he said it was his right. He didn't feel entitled to -- he felt entitled to the property. He now knows that obviously you can't go -- even under Nevada law and most laws of the state of the -- of the United States, you can't go and take property, even though it's 100 percent -- even though it's 100 percent not in dispute that the property belongs to you. OK?

[15:15:02]

You can't go back and take it by force. If for some reason you stole this from me right now, OK, and then I come and I see that you have it, all right, I can't go and beat you up and hit you with anything to take it back for myself. OK? I can't do it.

And so that's it. So that's it. And so I'm not sure where you said he can't take responsibility. He's taken responsibility. He was just offering an explanation.

Next question.

All right, well, thank you very much. I'm going to...

QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE)

LAVERGNE: Not if I have anything to do with it. The answer is no.

QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE) LAVERGNE: The parole and probation, the Nevada Department of Parole and Probation, which is known as P&P, they just stated that on the record. That's something, a question you can refer to them, but the date that they stated is the date they stated.

QUESTION: Did anything inside there surprise you?

LAVERGNE: I'm trying to think. No. I mean, there's -- there was a lot of preparation.

You know, normally, these hearings, I think, to actually do a perfect hearing, a parole revocation hearing like this, you probably could have prepared, a lawyer probably could have prepared for less than an hour for this hearing. All right?

You see my file here, how much I have. I don't have books of reams of things. The whole file is in here. OK? And this one obviously was dealing with the onslaught of the media requests, dealing with various things, and dealing with the Nevada Department of Corrections through their liaisons and dealing with the Department of Parole and Probation through their liaisons.

And I may come out, but my intention right now is to go spend more time with Mr. Simpson and his family. I don't think there was anything that was surprising because we controlled -- we were able to control a lot of things so well, so much, and especially at the hearing, the biggest part of the hearing obviously for me was making sure that certain information was just kept -- obviously, there's a 10,000-pound elephant in that room.

And I think we were very successful in making sure that that elephant was sleeping and that it was washed and very clean, and that it -- and that it never started, you know, rearing its head or knocking things around. So that was -- for me, that's 100 percent success when that was excluded and kept out. Thank you.

QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE)

LAVERGNE: No, that was just a letter he had communicated to Assemblyman Fumo. And that was just in the letter. That was the content of the letter. I just read it.

QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE)

LAVERGNE: That was a letter from him to Assemblyman Fumo. And he's just saying a letter, because he had just taken a computer course and obviously one of the things you learn in computer courses is, if you're doing any modern-day computer stuff, is, Web pages, blogging, all that stuff.

So he said that. It's not something I would ever advise.

QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE)

LAVERGNE: What's your name and your organization?

QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE)

LAVERGNE: No, no, I wasn't referring to that at all. I mean, come on. You know exactly what I was referring to. Come on.

QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE) he would get paroled?

LAVERGNE: Excuse me?

QUESTION: Did you ever doubt that he would get paroled?

LAVERGNE: Well, the answer is yes, yes and no. Yes, because Mr. Simpson is obviously a very polarizing figure.

He's very, very well-loved. He's -- but also he's held into contempt by a lot of people. And he also wanted to thank the media for, you knowledge -- not thank the media -- excuse me -- thank the people, his fans who have communicated through the media.

You won't publish the positive things that are said about him, but all of his fans have sent him mail saying that they have sent a lot of information to the media. And I have never seen any of it published, maybe one article or something like that. He wants to thank them.

He wants to thank the NDOC, thank the P&P, all these organizations. So he's just so polarizing, going back to your question. He's just so polarizing that it's -- it was hard to really know the certainty of this.

I will tell you one thing that made me very optimistic, and I will be very frank with you here. The one thing that made me very optimistic is that the -- and this is something I don't think was published -- is that the parole commissioners here that you saw, the four individuals -- and then there's two others that are still active -- this is a commission that's seven total.

Those commissioners are actually appointed. They're not elected officials, OK? So they're actually appointed by the governor. And, more importantly -- and this is what's important. This is why I started feeling very, very good about this. They can only be removed for impeachment, almost like a federal judge.

Now, their terms expire, but they can only be removed for impeachment, so they can make decisions regardless of the outcry and the heat on them, OK?

That's unlike the process that Mr. Simpson has been exposed to for the last nine years, where he's dealing with elected judges, elected judges, elected judges.

[15:20:00]

And listen, who wants to be the judge who has to run for office that says, I did something favorable to let O.J. Simpson go?

I mean, we put on -- when I say we, attorneys Tom Pitaro, and attorneys Ozzie Fumo and attorneys Trish Palm, all phenomenal lawyers, they actually helped me prepare for this hearing today. They put on probably one of the strongest habeas cases you will ever find, OK, after the conviction.

And it was an uphill battle. And it was respected that it was an uphill battle. But I just -- if you sit in those judges' seats and you like your judge position and you know that it's elected, if you do anything negatively against -- if you do anything favorably for Simpson, you got to be thinking, hey, someone's going to draw -- I'm going draw an opponent and the first thing the opponent's going to say is, this is the judge that let O.J. Simpson go, OK?

So, that's it. All right. I'm going to go back and spend some more time. Huh?

QUESTION: (OFF-MIKE)

LAVERGNE: I'm going to go back and spend time with Mr. Simpson and his family a little bit. I will be back after it's finished. It's kind of hot out here. And hopefully it's hot enough for you to all be gone by then.

But if you're not, I will answer some more questions. All right? Take care.

BALDWIN: OK. So, that was O.J. Simpson's lawyer.

If you're just tuning in, this is essentially O.J. Simpson day. And what you have missed, what you have missed is the fact that these four Nevada -- in Carson City, Nevada, these four parole board commissioners questioned O.J. Simpson. He's been in prison for eight years and some change because of this armed robbery in this Las Vegas hotel room.

He's been in this promise in Lovelock correctional facility since December of '08. And so they questioned him. They met for, I want to say, no more than five to 10 minutes and all came back and all four of them unanimously said that they would grant him parole.

And so O.J. Simpson will be walking a free man as early as October. That was his attorney. And he was mentioning a name that many of us may not be familiar with, Jeff Felix, who apparently wrote this book, "Guarding the Juice."

He's been talking a lot about -- giving color on what O.J. Simpson has been like as a prisoner for these eight or so years in this correctional facility.

So, Paul Vercammen, let's talk a little bit about that, that life behind bars and how, you know, according to this former, what, correctional officer and others, you know, and part of the reason that he was granted this parole was despite anything you may think of, you know, O.J. Simpson prior to December of '08, you know, he's been this model inmate.

PAUL VERCAMMEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: And that's what the prison system here in Nevada has said flatly, that O.J. Simpson has had no disciplinary troubles, that he's been off their radar. They say that's not the case with other inmates.

And that was echoed by a former inmate, two former guards, and also O.J.'s good friends who visit him here have also shed light on this, Tom Scotto, one, who's inside right now behind me with O.J. Simpson in Lovelock.

He said that whenever he visited with Simpson, the guards would in sort of a joking way call him Nordberg from the "Naked Gun" movies. That was his bumbling character. Others have said that they also called O.J. bobblehead and revealed that he sort of connected his life to sports still.

Scotto and others said that O.J. consistently played fantasy football, apparently played it so well that Felix said that he cheated off O.J.'s fantasy football sheets and made some money. They also say, and O.J. said this himself, that he not only ran the softball league and that he coached it.

And one inmate said that he was a great coach and led the championship, so he continued to sort of tangentially keep his life linked on sports. And as you pointed ow pointed out, Brooke, several sources, including the commission here in Nevada, say he kept his nose clean and obviously a big factor in him getting parole.

I would like to at one more thing, Brooke. So often when we cover these parole hearings, there's this moment where a tearful victim goes before the board and begs for the inmate to be kept in prison. Of course, Fromong flipped that switch today and that moment.

And then there was that moment when O.J. got emotional after Fromong said that he would clearly pick up Juice, as he still calls him to this day, if he was freed. So that was a real twist in the saga of O.J. Simpson, which always seems to have its twists and turns.

BALDWIN: Let's play that moment, shall we, Paul? Let's play the moment, not with the other testimony, but the moment where O.J. Simpson learned he would be a free man.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: If I cast my vote to grant and it concludes the hearing, our expectation would be that you not violate even the simplest condition of parole.

Having said that, I am prepared to cast a vote. I am prepared to ask the commissioners to set conditions. If that happens, we will produce an order some time in the next 15 to 20 minutes that will be faxed to you or presented to you at the institution, and it will become a public record.

So, based on all of that, Mr. Simpson, I do vote to grant parole when eligible. And that will conclude this hearing.

[15:25:04]

O.J. SIMPSON, INMATE: Thank you. Thank you. (APPLAUSE)

(END VIDEO CLIP)

BALDWIN: Paul, I wanted to come back to you just for more one quick question, but just to tell all of you, we will actually hear from these four different parole board commission members in just a couple of minutes, so we will all stand by for that.

But just finally, do we know what happens? Just to clarify for everyone, just because he's granted parole today doesn't mean he walks out of the front doors of Lovelock correctional facility. He has to wait at least until October.

But between now and then, is he still treated just like as he has been since December of '08 in that prison?

VERCAMMEN: According to prison officials, it's status quo, but at one point, you don't -- leave Lovelock, and I believe he goes south to a prison in the Las Vegas area. And that's where his ultimate release will come.

And after that, by the way, his good friend Tom Scotto -- remember, it's Scotto's wedding that he was attending in Las Vegas when this incident happened.

Scotto say she's moving, as we heard, to the west coast of Florida. Scotto thinks he wants to be close to his kids. Scotto said he could live with him and he even joked that he expects that somewhere there in Florida, O.J. could even golf.

BALDWIN: OK. All right. Paul, thank you.

Let me go back. I have got Kyra and Paul and Jeff Toobin over here with me in New York, we wait to hear from these different correctional commissioners on this parole board.

We were talking a little bit here about life behind bars. I know I read, I think, he had a 13-inch flat-screen TV, played a kind of fantasy football.

PHILLIPS: This is where Jeff Toobin is going to argue with me.

TOOBIN: I certainly am.

PHILLIPS: OK.

And here's what I'm thinking, because we both, I know, have covered this for two decades. There are a lot of people that hate O.J.

TOOBIN: Yes, there are.

PHILLIPS: There are a lot of people that are angry with O.J. And I don't think he's just going to get out in October and be waving his hands and get a ticker parade down New York avenue and everybody's going to be excited that he's a free man. I think life is going to be difficult. And I think that he's going to

have security concerns. And I'm putting money on it now. I think he's going to find himself in trouble somehow. I don't know what it's going to be, but I think something will happen. I don't think he's just going to fly under the radar.

(CROSSTALK)

BALDWIN: You think life is better where he is now vs. life in Florida?

PHILLIPS: Let me tell you, he gets enough food. He's playing his fantasy football. He's counseling guys, apparently. He's coaching the softball team. He's disinfecting the gym equipment.

I mean...

PHILLIPS: Let me let Areva weigh in.

Areva, you're listening to Kyra.

PHILLIPS: Oh, no. Oh, no. She's my biggest enemy right now.

MARTIN: I don't know if Kyra is suggesting that O.J. Simpson would lead a better life in prison than out with his family. That's a little incomprehensible to me.

He's been away from his family for nine years. He's 70 years old. He deserves an opportunity to reunite with his family and to be given a second chance. That's what this country is all about. That's what the parole system is all about is giving second chances to those prisoners that demonstrate that they are ready for a second chance.

(CROSSTALK)

PHILLIPS: Let me say something about his family, because I interviewed Denise Brown, and I had the opportunity to talk about O.J.'s kids.

And, you know, they deserve a lot of credit for how well those kids are doing. I mean, I saw pictures and text messages and conversations about how involved they have been in those kids' lives to make sure they graduated from college and they stayed out of the tabloids and were to somewhat have a normal life.

So let's not, you know, think that this is going to be some amazing, loving, embracing situation where everything's going to be great for O.J. and his family. I think that this could be an interesting...

MARTIN: No one has suggested that, Kyra. The man's daughter just testified that she loves her father.

We heard her make that testimony.

(CROSSTALK) TOOBIN: The other thing to remember is that O.J. Simpson was out and

a free man from 1995 to 2007. And it was fine. I mean, he did not -- you know, he did not have trouble with people on the street. He played a lot of golf. He lived his life in Florida.

PHILLIPS: He wrote a book, "If I Did It."

TOOBIN: "If I Did It," right.

(CROSSTALK)

PHILLIPS: He cut a rap song that was pretty...

TOOBIN: All of which suggests that being out is a heck of a lot better than being in prison. And prison is terrible.

Prison is awful in this country. I don't care what you call it, a country club or whatever. Prison is a terrible place to be, especially for a 70-year-old man. And I don't think he's going to have any problem out in his life.

PHILLIPS: So, if life was so good, why did he feel like he had to go hijack his memorabilia?

TOOBIN: He wanted more money.

MARTIN: Brooke, can I comment on something.

BALDWIN: Please do, yes.

MARTIN: Yes.

One of the things impacted to comment on is what the lawyer said, O.J.'s attorney said, which I completely agree with. He said O.J. is a polarizing figure. And it's not just polarizing along racial lines, black and white.

He's polarizing in the African-American community. O.J. at one point said he didn't even identify as African-American. He was O.J., that he was somehow above race --