It was just after 5:30 am when I reached for the remote, turned on the local news. and learned that embattled former New England Patriots football player Aaron Hernandez reportedly committed suicide in his prison cell.
“Aaron Hernandez, the former star tight end with the New England Patriots who was convicted of first-degree murder in 2015, hanged himself in prison on Wednesday, the authorities said.
He was discovered in his cell by corrections officers at the Souza-Baranowski Correctional Center in Shirley, Mass., around 3 a.m., the Massachusetts Department of Correction said in a statement.” – New York Times
It is no secret that jails and prisons have become a holding ground for the mentally ill. A 2014 report released by the Treatment Advocacy Center indicates that the number of mentally ill persons in prisons and jails are ten times higher than in state mental hospitals (TAC, 2014) but was Hernandez one of those or was he a victim of the company he kept?
On April 14th, Hernandez was found not guilty of the 2012 drive by shooting deaths of Safiro Furtado and Daniel de Abreu, he was convicted on one count of illegal possession of a firearm.
Hernandez was still serving time for the 2013 death of Odin Lloyd, Hernandez’s case and that case has a pending appeal for a new trial.
There seem to be a lot of moving pieces to this, I’m not a conspiracy theorist but I am one who has followed Hernandez’s career, and his cases and thinks this merits a closer.