O.J. Simpson is set to become a free man later this year after being granted parole earlier in July by the Nevada State Parole Board after nine years in prison for kidnapping and theft charges. Simpson’s parole hearing was a strange thing to watch, as he insisted he had, up to the incident in which he went to retrieve his old memorabilia back that led to the charges, lived a conflict-free life.
With his parole hearing and the return of his 1994 murder trial to popular culture in the form of an FX drama series and an ESPN documentary series, Simpson is very much part of the public conscience once again. For Mike Gilbert, Simpson’s former agent, that meant there was never a better time to cash in on one of the most infamous rides in American history.
Gilbert is the owner of the white Ford Bronco owned by Al Cowlings (A.C.) that Simpson famously rode in during a slow-speed chase from police after he became the top suspect in the murder of Nicole Brown-Simpson and Ron Goldman. Gilbert decided to see if he could get a big payday by bringing the Bronco to pawn broker Rick Harrison on the TV show Pawn Stars, and his asking price was a crazy $500,000.
You can see a brief clip of the Bronco’s return to the TV screen on TMZ Sports, which is part of the full episode which will air on History Channel.
Seeing the world’s most famous Bronco — and arguably the world’s most famous vehicle — 23 years later is a bit surreal. At a price tag of $500,000, it’s hard to imagine it getting actually sold on the show (as TMZ notes, the most they’ve ever spent on the show was $128,000 for gold bars). Harrison told Fox News that he was conflicted about whether to put it on the show and that he’s been offered Simpson related items before and turned them down, but thought it would be good for the show and felt it was worth it to at least have the discussion.
“Not many people realize it’s for sale … and I just thought it was a really cool thing to put on the show,” says “Pawn Stars” personality Rick Harrison, who co-owns World Famous Gold & Silver Pawn Shop. “I never glorify gangsters or murderers on the show … and I think OJ is a douchebag … who did some really bad things. I’m a dad with six kids and I’m trying to teach each of them a little bit of morality.
“But I felt it would be good for the show and I figured I’d give it a shot.”
“I’ve been offered some OJ stuff over the years and I always tell people to go someplace else,” Harrison says. “I hate stuff like that in my store. This is one of the most conflicted episodes we’ve done.”
From the sounds of it, Harrison won’t be trying to meet the asking price of Gilbert to actually buy the car, but for those that want to see what the Bronco looks like 23 years later, it’ll be on History Channel on August 14 at 10 p.m. ET.