Judge Vacates Aaron Hernandez's Murder Conviction
- Author: Leroy Wright May 11, 2017,
May 11, 2017, 16:44
"This court has no choice but to vacate the conviction", Garsh said from the bench about a half-hour after hearing lawyers argue in the same courtroom where the former $40 million National Football League star's 9 1/2 -week murder trial was conducted.
At the time of his death, Hernandez had not exhausted his appeals for his first-degree murder conviction in the 2013 killing of Odin Lloyd, a conviction under MA law that is automatically appealed to the state's highest court. Due to a "binding precedent" Garsh said a legal doctrine calls for erasing convictions when the defendant dies.
State police said in an investigative report that Hernandez was found naked April 19 and hanging from a bed sheet tied around the window bars of his cell.
"There being no reason to recognize any exception in this case in the interest of justice the court has no choice" but to vacate Hernandez's conviction, Garsh said.
The 27-year-old Hernandez was also accused of a separate double murder in 2012 and acquitted five days before he killed himself.
She said, "in our book, he's guilty, and he's going to always be guilty".
Hernandez's lawyer, John Thompson, told reporters after the hearing that he believes it is still uncertain as to whether Hernandez took his own life.
However, even if the lawyers are able to get the funds from the Patriots, Hernandez is facing three wrongful death lawsuits. "No one wins today".
Hernandez's death ended a spectacular fall from grace for a man who signed a seven-year $40 million contract in 2012 with the Patriots after a troubled upbringing in CT. "And that's the victory that I have that I am gonna take with me", Ward said.
Garsh ruled in favor of Hernandez, citing an ancient MA law that states if a defendant dies while a conviction is still in process of an appeal then the verdict is to be vacated.
Hernandez's appellate lawyer told a judge during a court hearing Tuesday that a long-established legal doctrine in MA requires the court to vacate his conviction because Hernandez died before his appeal of his murder conviction could be heard.
Before his death, Hernandez was in the middle of an appeal review by the state Supreme Judicial Court. "But I won because I have God on my side and with God all things are possible". Based on his suicide note to his fiancee, which was made public last Friday, Hernandez appeared to be aware of the law.
"I don't give it any shred of credibility at this point."Tell me story fully but never think anything besides how much I love you.
Llyod was a semi-professional football player, who allegedly dated Hernandez's girlfriend's sister.