Just five days after being acquitted of charges stemming from a 2012 double homicide, correction officers were stunned to discover the former Patriots tight end hanging unconscious in his cell at the Souza-Baranowski Correctional Center in Shirley at around 3:00 a.m. Wednesday morning.
Hernandez was then transported to UMass Memorial in Leominster, where he was pronounced dead at 4:07 a.m. of an apparent suicide.
Just one week ago, in an interview conducted by CNBC, Patriots coach Bill Belichick was asked to give a one-word answer regarding the Hernandez story, to which he answered with one adjective.
Hernandez was drafted by the Patriots in the fourth round back in 2010. Despite multiple red flags on his personal record from his days at the University of Florida, the team took a shot. Over the course of three NFL seasons, Hernandez had 175 catches for 1,956 yards and 18 touchdowns. Playing along side fellow TE Rob Gronkowski in a formidable tandem, Hernandez also played a key role in helping the Patriots reach Super Bowl XLVI in 2011.
Unfortunately, Hernandez could not leave his past behind him. In June of 2013, a man by the name of Alexander Bradley accused Hernandez of shooting him in the head, causing him to lose his right eye.
Just days afterward on June 18th, police swarmed Hernandez’s property in North Attleboro for an investigation involving a close friend, Odin Loyd, who was found dead in a nearby industrial park.
On June 26th, Hernandez was officially arrested, and charged with first-degree murder in the case. The Patriots would proceed to cut him in conjunction.
In May of 2014, Hernandez was indicted on two counts of murder involving two men, Safiro Furtado and Daniel de Abreu, outside of a Boston Nightclub in a drive-by shooting back in 2012. Hernandez was found not guilty of the charges on April 14th last week, to which he left the courtroom in tears.
Hernandez leaves behind his fiancee, Shayanna Jenkins, and a four-year old daughter, Avielle,