Former Patriots Player Aaron Hernandez Allegedly Hangs Himself in Prison
Summary: On Wednesday, convicted murderer and former Patriots star Aaron Hernandez was found dead in his prison cell.
Just days after being acquitted for the murders of two strangers at a nightclub, football player Aaron Hernandez was found dead, hanging in his prison cell. The former New England Patriots tight end was serving a life sentence for another murder charge when he apparently took his own life.
Hernandez’s short journey in the public eye was shocking. The 27-year-old was a star athlete for the Patriots and earned millions before he spiraled out of control, becoming a convicted murderer and leaving a child and devoted girlfriend behind.
On Wednesday, Massachusetts Department of Corrections officials said that they found Hernandez hanging from a bed sheet attached to his cell’s window. He was serving a life sentence at the Shirley Baranowski Correctional Center in Shirley, MA for the murder of his friend Odin Llyod. In April 2015, a jury ruled that Hernandez had killed his friend on a gravelly road near his mansion in 2013.
The Washington Post said that Hernandez had jammed his prison cell door, and that officers had tried to save his life and transport him to a local hospital. A doctor at UMass-Leominster pronounced him dead at 4:07 a.m.
Hernandez’s attorney, Jose Baez, told The Washington Post that Hernandez’s loved ones and legal team were shocked by the news.
“The family and legal team is shocked and surprised at the news of Aaron’s death,” Baez said. “There were no conversations or correspondence from Aaron to his family or legal team that would have indicated anything like this was possible. Aaron was looking forward to an opportunity for a second chance to prove his innocence. Those who love and care about him are heartbroken and determined to find the truth surrounding his untimely death.”
A representative from the prison told The Washington Post that an investigation is ongoing. Baez, who represented accused murderer Casey Anthony, said that he and his law firm will launch their own inquiry into his death; and Hernandez’s agent implied on Twitter that Hernandez did not commit suicide.
“Chico was not a saint, but my family and I loved him and he would never take his own life,” Brian Murphy, Hernandez’s agent, said.
Four days before Hernandez allegedly hanged himself, he had been acquitted of the murders of Daniel de Abreu and Safiro Furtado, who were killed outside a nightclub in 2012.
Hernandez was found guilty of Llyod’s murder that happened a year later, around the same time that the footballer signed a $ 40 million contract with the New England Patriots. His seven-year contract included a $ 12.5 million signing bonus, and the deal was considered a steal because of Hernandez’s star power. At the Super Bowl XLVI, he had caught a touchdown pass and had seemingly formed a synergy with Patriot Rob Gronkowski, who had been drafted in 2010 with Hernandez.
After Hernandez was arrested for Lloyd’s murder, the Patriots immediately released him, expressing that they felt “duped” by the football powerhouse.
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Source: The Washington Post
Photo courtesy of CNN