Details are emerging about the murder case brought against former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez. The grand jury met 24 times and reviewed some 272 pieces of evidence in a 2012 double murder.
Hernandez stands accused in the July 16, 2012, killings of Daniel de Abreu, 29, and Safiro Furtado, 28. Hernandez allegedly wounded a third man in the same incident. A Suffolk County, Massachusetts grand jury indicted the former player in May of this year on multiple charges of murder, assault with intent to murder, and a single count of illegal weapons possession.
In the indictment, Boston District Attorney Daniel Conley insisted that Hernandez himself pulled the trigger, saying, “Aaron Hernandez fired a .38-caliber revolver multiple times from the driver’s side of his vehicle into the passenger’s side of the victims’ vehicle.”
Hernandez pleaded not guilty to the charges. The Patriots cut him upon his arrest in connection with a separate murder last year.
Hernandez had built a promising NFL career after the Patriots drafted him in 2010. He was chosen as number 77 on the NFL’s top-100 list in 2013 and in 2010 he was chosen the Pepsi NFL Rookie of the Week. He caught a touchdown pass in the Super Bowl and earned a Pro Bowl nod during the 2011 season.
Now a new public filing on the case shows that police had initially run into a wall on the investigation of the murders until a separate incident occurred in which Hernandez became a chief suspect. During the investigation into the death of Odin Lloyd, 27, Hernandez came under suspicion.
Lloyd was the sister of Hernandez’ fiancée and was killed a mile from the player’s home. Investigators arrested Hernandez for the killing only a week after the murder.
During the investigation into Lloyd’s murder, police discovered a link to the murders of de Abreu and Furtado that placed Hernandez under the microscope again.
In all, several thousand photographs and pieces of evidence were presented to the grand jury.
“For example,” Fox Sports reports, “among the evidence turned over was 1,087 photographs taken by investigators–415 taken on the day de Abreu and Furtado were killed, or on the following day. Another 672 pictures were all taken in 2013.”
“The filing shows that prosecutors also turned over to the defense ballistics and forensics reports, search warrants, financial and travel records, phone records, computer printouts and what is described as a handwritten letter,” the report continues.
Hernandez faces charges in the two separate murder cases involving three victims. He will next appear in court on June 16 in the Lloyd murder case and on June 24 in the de Abreau and Furtado case.
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