On Friday afternoon a jury found former New England Patriot Aaron Hernandez not guilty of two counts of murder relating to a 2012 drive-by shooting outside a Boston nightclub.
The former NFL star faced eight counts total including two murder charges, three for armed assault and a charge of witness intimidation for allegedly shooting his former friend in the face in an attempt to silence him. He was found guilty on one count of illegal possession of a firearm.
Hernandez wept as the jury announced the not guilty charges. However it’s not all-good news for Hernandez… He’s still serving a life sentence for his conviction in the murder of Odin Lloyd.
Prosecutors had argued that Hernandez had shot and killed both Daniel Abreu and Safiro Furtado back on July 16, 2012 following an altercation over a spilled drink at a Boston club. However, evidence wasn’t as strong as it was in the 2015 Lloyd murder case. Prosecutors relied heavily on testimony of the friend Hernandez shot in the face, Alexander Bradley, but Hernandez’s attorney chipped away at the credibility of Bradley, and argued that it was in fact him who shot Abreu and Furtado in a drug deal gone wrong. Prosecutors also pointed to Hernandez’s tattoos as confessions of the crimes. One of his tattoos was a gun similar to the murder weapon with exactly five bullets, the same number as were fired in the 2012 shooting.
Earlier this week Hernandez’s former coach, Bill Belichick, was asked for a word to describe the former tight end, Belichick responded with “tragedy.”
In his first trial for the murder of Lloyd jurors deliberated for 36 hours over seven days before convicting him of murder.
Jurors in the trial that concluded Friday deliberated for about 37 hours.