by The Chicago Times Staff

June 15, 2021

LAS VEGAS — According to local publications quoting court records, a settlement struck between O.J. Simpson and The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas must go to the family of Ron Goldman, the man who was murdered together with Simpson’s ex-wife in Los Angeles in 1994.

In April, Simpson and the luxury resort casino and hotel reached a defamation settlement.  The former NFL player had filed a lawsuit against the hotel, alleging that his reputation had been harmed as a result of his expulsion from the property in November 2017 after an alleged intoxicated altercation at a hotel bar.  Simpson became enraged with hotel employees, according to hotel staff, and the confrontation resulted in smashed glass. 

The hotel contended that Simpson’s reputation had already been tainted by the historic criminal and civil cases in the 1994 murder of his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ron Goldman, as well as Simpson’s imprisonment in Nevada over an armed robbery case in 2007.

Simpson was found guilty of their deaths in a civil trial and forced to pay the victims’ families more than $33 million in damages.  According to a Nevada court filing obtained by KTNV, the ABC-affiliated TV station in Las Vegas, the judgment was eventually increased to more than $55 million, of which only around $133,000 has been paid.

The settlement was made between Simpson and The Cosmopolitan, but it was “allocated” to Goldman’s family and ordered “immediately delivered over to Goldman’s counsel, Larson A. Welsh, Esq,” according to a court filing, according to KLAS, the CBS-affiliated TV station in “Sin City.”

After serving nine years in a Nevada prison for directing five men in a bid to recover some memorabilia from two collectibles dealers in a Las Vegas hotel room, Simpson has been residing in a Las Vegas golf community.  His probation is set to expire in 2022.

The Wall Street Journal stated in April 2019 that The Blackstone Group was “exploring a sale of the Cosmopolitan hotel and casino,” just as the epidemic hit.  The property was purchased for $1.7 billion by the investing group in 2014.