The trial, which gathered over 100 witnesses, came to an end Wednesday morning when the verdict was announced. Insiders claim Hernandez remained calm and mouthed “It’s OK” to his weeping mother and fiancée, according to CNN.
Hernandez’s defense team argued that he had nothing to do with the death of amateur football player Odin Lloyd, who happened to be the boyfriend of his fiancée’s sister. They claim he was present during his death, but wasn’t the one who pulled the trigger. Lloyd’s body was found the day after he was seen with Hernandez and friends Carlos Ortiz and Ernest Wallace.
While Hernandez initially said he was at a club on the night of the shooting, prosecutors believe he left the club to meet with the men and drive to Boston. They also claim the group picked up Lloyd and killed him in an industrial park.
The athlete’s murder charge has a penalty of life in prison without parole. He reportedly has plans to appeal the sentence.
The Connecticut native played three seasons with the New England Patriots as a tight-end and scored 18 touchdowns before the incident. Just two hours after his arrest on June 26, 2013, he was released from the team. Earlier this month, Patriots owner Bob Kraft took the stand and testified that Hernandez told him he was innocent in Lloyd’s murder.
Ortiz and Wallace have pleaded not guilty and will be tried for the crime at a later date.
Hernandez will also have to appear in court again for sentencing and additional charges of murder in a separate case that took place in Boston. The player has been accused of shooting two men in a nightclub. The trial is expected to begin in May.
SOURCE: CNN | VIDEO CREDIT: News Inc.