It's been a while since OJ Simpson had this much news coverage! The athlete has a parole hearing this Thursday, which is merely something of a formality for him to walk out of prison as a free man.

Simpson has been something like a national obsession and his possible release after nine years behind bars may just renew public interest.

To be clear, this hearing is not a court room and there is no judge. This is ruled by the Parole Work Commissioners. This means that four ordinary looking people will be presiding over this case, including one of the victims of the crime.

OJ won't be in this location. He will be in Lovelock Correctional Facility. He has the right to speak and commissioners will ask him questions. The whole procedure is not expected to last more than 30 minutes.

The two possible outcomes from this hearing could recommend a role or deny it. Simpson has a strong chance to have a positive outcome.

Why is he in prison?

10 years ago, in September 2007, Simpson was convicted for a crime in which he and several accomplices entered a Las Vegas hotel room and took hundreds of collection pieces from two men.

He said he was trying to recover items that belonged to him, including family photos, but the group left with many items that had nothing to do with him.

In 2008, he was convicted on 12 accounts: three on conspiracy; one of burglary with use of a deadly weapon; two counts each of kidnapping, robbery, assault and coercion, all with use of a deadly weapon.

Simpson was sentenced to a minimum of nine years and a maximum of 33 years in prison.

This looks pretty dull for many of you youngsters, but there is a small detail that made the whole thing more complex. Back in 1997, OJ was found liable of wrongful death in a civil trial brought by the families of his wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her "friend", Ronald Goldman.

So now, the only thing I remember back in the '90s about this case was watching a car chase on TV. If you are in the same place as me, that is because Simpson escaped the police after being asked to surrender in connection with the murder of his ex-wife and her friend.

The NFL star instead led the whole police in a wild chase across L.A.'s freeways that was broadcast live on television around the world.

The chase started in Orange County and ended in the driveway of Simpson's Brentwood estate.

Now, although Simpson was found to be in possession of a gun, his passport, $9,000 in cash and a disguise, he insisted that he "wasn't running." Later, he pleaded "not guilty" to the murder charges. 

Lead prosecutor Marcia Clark appeared to have a strong case, but things didn't work out as expected. A glove matching the one found near the dead bodies surfaced on Simpson's property and the DNA testing connected the athlete with blood stains left on the crime scene.

However, Simpson's legal team, including Robert Kardashian, dismissed the matching gloves.

On October 3, 1995, the jury found Simpson not guilty of either murder.