After a week of repeated visits to the North Attleborough, Mass., home and neighborhood of New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez, local officials posted a notice at the courthouse Tuesday saying all records have been “impounded by the order of the court.”
That would include any information on evidence and the contents of search warrants.
Hernandez has been the target of scrutiny in the shooting death of 27-year old semi-pro football player and friend, Odin Lloyd, whose body was found a week ago about a quarter-mile from Hernandez’s home.
A law enforcement official told CNN late Monday that “there is no arrest warrant. It wasn’t true last week and it isn’t true today.
This followed the first public remarks by Michael K. Fee of Ropes and Gray LLP, the attorneys for Hernandez, and a polite response by District Attorney Sam Sutter.
In his statement, Fee said:
“Over the past week, our client, Aaron Hernandez, has been the subject of a relentless flood of rumors, misinformation, and false reports in the media. These include the repeated publication of a supposedly confirmed report that an arrest warrant had been issued for Aaron, a report that was exposed as untrue. None of these false reports come from official sources and we appreciate the professionalism and restraint shown by the Bristol County District Attorney’s Office to date with regard to its public statements while its investigation is underway. Out of respect for that ongoing investigation, we will continue to refrain from commenting on its substance.”
In return, Sutter released a short statement that said: “Those of us who are involved in this ongoing investigation appreciate the positive remarks about our professionalism.”
Monday morning, six officers, including three in rubber wet suits, reported they found no evidence after searching the water in a wooded area near the Hernandez property.
State and local investigators were at the Hernandez home every day from Tuesday through Saturday, when more than a dozen officials and two K-9 units were present for almost four hours and left with boxes and bags full of what is presumed to be evidence.
Hernandez grew up in nearby Bristol, Conn., and was drafted by the Patriots out of the University of Florida in 2010.
It was reported that Hernandez and three others, including Lloyd, were together Sunday, June 16. Neighbors reported they heard shots after midnight. Lloyd’s body was found Monday afternoon.
Multiple reports indicate that when investigators retrieved a surveillance video and cellular phone from Hernandez that they were physically damaged. Also, Hernandez reportedly hired a cleaning crew to scrub his home last Monday.
There was a series of conflicting reports by various media last week regarding whether a warrant for arrest was issued in some form for Hernandez, addressing obstruction of justice. Unnamed police and other officials were cited, but court officials denied the existence of a warrant almost daily on the record.
Lloyd was dating the sister of Hernandez’s girlfriend, Shayana Jenkins, who is the mother of his child.
Lloyd’s family says Hernandez was his friend, but although they have heard from his girlfriend since the death, Hernandez has not talked to them.