Former New England Patriots star Aaron Hernandez commits suicide in prison

  1. Aaron Hernandez kills himself in prison

    Convicted killer and former New England Patriots star Aaron J. Hernandez hanged himself inside his cell at the state’s maximum security prison in Shirley early Wednesday, in an apparent suicide five days after he was acquitted of two additional murders.

    Hernandez, 27, was serving life without parole for killing Odin L. Lloyd in an industrial park near the football player’s million dollar North Attleborough home in 2013.

    The arc of his life was short, and steep. He reached the highest levels of fortune and acclaim in professional sports, only to throw it all away by shooting Lloyd, who had been his friend.

    Hernandez apparently took his own life on the day many of his former teammates will be honored at the White House for winning Super Bowl 51 without him.

    The former All-Pro tight end, a one-time rising National Football League star with a $40 million contract, was hanging from a bedsheet attached to bars on the window of the cell in Unit G-2 when corrections officers found him around 3:05 a.m., the state Department of Correction said in a statement.

    Hernandez was rushed to UMass Leominster. He was pronounced dead at 4:07 a.m., the DOC said. The state medical examiner’s office has since taken custody of his body, the DOC said. An investigation will be overseen by Worcester District Attorney Joseph D. Early Jr.’s office.

    The medical examiner will conduct an autopsy at its Boston facility, according to Early’s office.

    DOC spokesman Christopher Fallon said there was no suicide note found during the initial search of the two-man cell to which Hernandez was assigned alone. He was not on a suicide watch because he had not signaled he was at risk, Fallon said.

    “If he had made any kind of statement, he would have not been in that unit,’’ Fallon said.

    Hernandez is the 27th recorded suicide at Souza-Baranowski Correctional Center since 2010 and the second this year, according to DOC records.

    A football prodigy from Connecticut who lost his father when he was 16 years old, Hernandez starred at the University of Florida before being drafted by the Patriots in the 4th round of the 2010 draft. He quickly established himself in the upper tier of tight ends in the NFL.

    A Suffolk Superior Court jury acquitted Hernandez April 14 of killing Daniel de Abreu and Safiro Furtado in Boston in July 2012. They were shot to death in the South End.

    A person with direct knowledge who spoke on condition of anonymity said that while many observers of Hernandez’s recent trial remarked on his stoic demeanor, within prison walls he was insecure and clung to gang members for approval.

    He was not aloof with other inmates, this person said. Instead, he appeared eager to be “one of the boys.” He was always sitting and laughing or playing basketball with gang members.

    Hernandez was on suicide watch immediately after he was convicted in 2015 of killing Lloyd, the person said.

    Hernandez was represented at his most recent trial by top defense lawyers, including Jose Baez and Ronald Sullivan, a Harvard Law School professor. They could not be reached immediately for comment Wednesday.

    Both lawyers have said, however, that they believed the acquittal meant that Hernandez was moving one more step towards being reunited with his family — the sole barrier being his conviction for murdering Lloyd, which was to be automatically reviewed by the state’s highest court.

    Baez on Tuesday tweeted a link to a long ESPN story in which he expressed confidence that he would successfully overturn Hernandez’s Bristol County Superior Court conviction.

    “I think there are plenty of flaws in that conviction,” he told ESPN. “If they are exposed properly, [Hernandez] certainly can and should get a new trial.” Baez described his client as “one step closer to being reunited with his family.”

    After the verdict last week, Hernandez turned in court toward Shayanna Jenkins-Hernandez, his longtime fiancee and the mother of his daughter, and said, “I love you.”
  2. I thought we had a thread about him, I searched and was coming to post this. Wow. I'm not sure I saw this coming
    uhpharm01 likes this.
  3. Ex-NFL star Aaron Hernandez dead after hanging self in cell
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    BOSTON (AP) -- Former NFL star Aaron Hernandez hanged himself in his prison cell early Wednesday while serving a life sentence for murder, authorities said.

    Hernandez, 27, was found by guards at the Souza-Baranowski Correctional Center in Shirley just after 3 a.m., Department of Correction spokesman Christopher Fallon said in a statement. The former New England Patriots tight end was pronounced dead at a hospital about an hour later.

    His death comes just days after he was acquitted of a double murder and on the same day the Patriots were set to visit the White House to mark their Super Bowl win. The team had no immediate comment.

    Hernandez was in a single cell in a general population housing unit in the maximum-security state prison. He hanged himself with a bed sheet that he attached to a window, Fallon said. Hernandez tried to block the cell door from the inside by jamming it with various items, Fallon said.

    Fallon said he's not aware of any suicide note written by Hernandez. He said that officials had no concern that Hernandez might take his own life, and said if they had had any such worries he would have been transferred to a mental health unit.

    Hernandez was moved to tears on Friday after he was acquitted of the 2012 fatal shootings of Daniel de Abreu and Safiro Furtado in Boston. Before his acquittal, Hernandez on Wednesday was seen blowing kisses to the little girl he fathered with fianc?e Shayanna Jenkins. Cameras captured the tender exchange.

    But, Hernandez was still serving a life sentence without the possibility of parole for his conviction in the 2013 shooting of Odin Lloyd, a semi-professional football player who was dating his fiancee's sister.

    He was tried but acquitted in the slayings of de Abreu and Furtado, whom prosecutors contended were gunned down after one of the men accidentally spilled a drink on Hernandez in a Boston nightclub. The jury in that case found Hernandez not guilty of first-degree murder but convicted him of unlawful possession of a gun, and the judge sentenced him to an additional four to five years in prison -- separate from his existing life sentence.

    Hernandez's lawyers did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

    Massachusetts State Police remain on the scene investigating the death.

    Hernandez grew up in Connecticut and played for the Patriots from 2010 to 2012. The team released him in June 2013, shortly after he was arrested in Lloyd's killing.
  4. So crazy, he seemed so relieved about the acquittal last week.
  5. The timing seems so weird since he was acquitted of the other two murders. Legally-speaking, things were going his way. I guess he couldn't handle prison.
  6. It was only for the second homicide charge. He was still going to serve a life sentence for the first murder charge.
  7. This whole thing seems suspect to me.
    uhpharm01 likes this.
  8. His lawyer agrees with you. According to TMZ his lawyer is calling for an investigation.
    uhpharm01 likes this.
  9. Good riddance.
  10. He's not worth wasting more taxpayers dollars imo.
  11. True. I have no trouble believing he committed suicide. He was a young man who had it all and he threw it away. That's got to eat at the soul.
    pukasonqo, cocolv, BleuSaphir and 4 others like this.
  12. Yes and on the same day that the NFL patriots are going to visit the White House, too
  13. So a man liveth ... so shall he die.
    FreeSpirit71, Irishgal and berrydiva like this.
  14. Exactly.
    prettyprincess likes this.
  15. His Attorney represented Casey Anthony... he has a certain type of clients, I see
    kkfiregirl, gelbergirl and DiorT like this.