Lawyer For Simpson Co-Defendant Says Prosecutors 'Overreaching'

A lawyer for a co-defendant in the O.J. Simpson armed robbery case accused prosecutors Thursday of "overreaching" with charges against his client and the former football star.

"The kidnapping allegation, particularly, is fairly thin, your honor," lawyer Bill Terry told a Las Vegas judge who set bail at $32,000 for co-defendant Michael McClinton.

Another defendant in the case, Charles Cashmore, also made an initial appearance before Las Vegas Justice of the Peace Joe Bonaventure Jr., who ordered him held without bail pending arraignment and a bail hearing Friday.

Deputy Clark County District Attorney Danielle Pieper told the judge that formal charges would be filed against Cashmore by then.

Meanwhile, Alfred Beardsley, 46, one of the alleged victims in the case, appeared in another courtroom and told a judge he would not contest his return to custody in California on a parole violation, a court spokesman said.

A California parole official declined to say when or where Beardsley would be moved. Beardsley, an ex-convict from Burbank, was arrested Wednesday at a Las Vegas Strip hotel on a warrant alleging he violated parole travel restrictions by traveling to Nevada.

He remained held without bail.

Beardsley and another sports memorabilia dealer, Bruce Fromong, accuse Simpson and five other men of bursting into a hotel room Sept. 13, displaying guns, and stealing autographed footballs and other sports memorabilia.

On Thursday, Terry suggested a possible defense that a kidnapping charge would require moving a person against their will.

He referred to "case law and kidnapping statutes" and told Bonaventure that according to police reports "everything occurred
within one room."

The judge, who on Wednesday arraigned Simpson and set bail for him at $125,000, acknowledged McClinton, 50, of Las Vegas, had "no significant criminal history," and credited him with surrendering to police Tuesday.

Bonaventure said that if McClinton is released, he will be on house arrest and will have to surrender his passport to his lawyer and give up a concealed weapon permit.

"My concern here is the weapons," said Bonaventure.

Police said searches turned up two semiautomatic handguns they said were used in the holdup.

Warrants in the case remained sealed, a court spokesman said.

Earlier in the week Bonaventure signed a police arrest warrant for McClinton on nearly the same charges as Simpson - including kidnapping, armed robbery, assault with a weapon and conspiracy.

Simpson faces one additional charge of felony coercion.

Terry, who said McClinton won't be able to raise the money to get out of jail, sought a preliminary hearing within 15 days.

The judge set it for Oct. 4.

Two other defendants, Walter Alexander, 46, and Clarence Stewart, 53, were arrested earlier and released pending court appearances.

Cashmore, 40, of Las Vegas, surrendered to police Wednesday, after police circulated photos drawn from surveillance tapes showing him and another man carrying boxes from the Palace Station hotel-casino following the alleged heist.

His lawyer, Edward Miley, said he would seek bail.

He described Cashmore as a union laborer who works as a disc jockey and a cook who has lived in Las Vegas for 15 years.

"He's sitting in jail for three days and can't make any income for his family," Miley said.

Police said they were still seeking the other man, whose name has not been made public.


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