Convicted killer and former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez ended his fall from grace in dramatic fashion - smoking synthetic marijuana and scribbling a Bible verse on his forehead before hanging himself with a bedsheet in his prison cell, according to reports.
Why now? Is there more to the story?
Hernandez was found hanged in his cell at the Souza Baranowski Correctional Center in Shirley, Mass. early Wendesday morning, according to a statement from the Massachusetts Department of Corrections. He would be convicted of the friend's murder, accused and acquitted of two other killings from 2012 and become a vivid, ready example of out-of-control off-field behaviour by National Football League (NFL) players. "Aaron Hernandez will go to his death an innocent man". Johnson explained that even during the night shift, if the intervals were 30 minutes, that would give Hernandez plenty of time to formulate a plan for his suicide.More news: Teacher accused of kidnapping student due in court
Hernandez, who was appealing a life sentence for the first-degree 2013 murder of his friend Odin Lloyd, had been found not guilty Friday of murdering Daniel de Abreu and Safiro Furtado in a 2012 drive-by shooting in Boston's South End.
"There were no signs of a struggle, and investigators determined that Mr. Hernandez was alone at the time of the hanging", the Worcester County district attorney's office said in a statement. After officers attempted life-saving procedures, he was rushed to UMass Memorial-HealthAlliance Hospital where he was pronounced dead about an hour later.
While Baez didn't outwardly reject the Department of Corrections' conclusion that Hernandez killed himself, he expressed doubt about the veracity of the state's investigation.More news: Samsung says Galaxy S8 pre-orders beat S7
Still, he was a productive tight end for the Patriots for three seasons. In court, he was seen blowing a kiss to his daughter before having to return back to his cell to serve the rest of his life sentence.
Massachusetts School of Law Dean and President Michael Coyne told USA TODAY Sports on Wednesday that in Massachusetts "when a defendant is no longer able to assist with his appeal, the law says the conviction should be vacated". "That was a positive thing in our minds", said Alex Cugno, who grew up with Hernandez in Bristol.
Healy said the legal rule states that upon a person's death, their case reverts to its initial status - before the trial and conviction - if they haven't exhausted all their appeals. It just doesn't add up.More news: Bill O'Reilly Out, Georgia Runoff, Turkish Vote46:37
Collins contributed from Hartford, Connecticut.
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