Simpson preliminary hearing postponed

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LAS VEGAS -- A preliminary hearing in the O.J. Simpson armed robbery case is expected to be postponed to November, attorneys and court officials said Tuesday.

"We're not having the preliminary hearing on the fourth," said Martin Muckleroy, a Las Vegas lawyer representing co-defendant Walter Alexander, of Mesa, Ariz. "To streamline things, they're trying to schedule a preliminary hearing for all parties."

Las Vegas Justice of the Peace Joe Bonaventure Jr. would make any scheduling changes official on Thursday, the date originally set for a preliminary hearing for two co-defendants, Michael McClinton and Charles Cashmore, court spokesman Michael Sommermeyer said.

Simpson and most of the other co-defendants will not have to appear, Sommermeyer said.

Cashmore's lawyer, Edward Miley, said the parties in the case prefer one evidentiary hearing for Simpson, McClinton, Cashmore, Alexander, Clarence Stewart and Charles Ehrlich.

Alexander would remain scheduled for an initial appearance Oct. 16, Muckleroy said.

A spokesman for Clark County District Attorney David Roger confirmed that lawyers and the judge were trying to schedule a preliminary hearing Nov. 8-9.

Roger also could present evidence before then to a grand jury behind closed doors instead of making it public at the preliminary hearing, at which the judge would be asked whether to bind the case over for trial in state court.

Simpson and the five other men each face kidnapping, armed robbery, assault, burglary and conspiracy charges in the Sept. 13 encounter with two sports memorabilia dealers in a room at an off-Strip hotel in Las Vegas.

Authorities allege they held memorabilia dealers Alfred Beardsley and Bruce Fromong at gunpoint and made off with boxes full of items, including some that Simpson has claimed belonged to him.
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