NFL star Aaron Hernandez arrested on charges of murdering semi-pro player
New York: American footballer Aaron Hernandez has reportedly been arrested on charges of murder and weapons violations on Wednesday after one of his friends was found dead near the tight end`s home.
Prosecutors charged the National Football League (NFL) star with murdering semi-professional football player Odin Lloyd, whose body was found at a industrial park on June 17, about a half-mile from the tight end`s home in Massachusetts, US, the New York Post reports.
According to the report, the New England Patriots player has pleaded not guilty to murder and five gun-related offenses, adding that a judge ordered him held without bail.
Stating that Hernandez orchestrated the execution of Lloyd, Assistant District Attorney Bill McCauley said that the football star was angry with Lloyd because of an altercation they had at a Boston nightclub on June 14, adding that a series of surveillance video cameras had captured images of Hernandez`s car traveling to that industrial park.
According to McCauley, when Hernandez returned home at around 3:30 a.m., he was seen on the surveillance video walking through his house holding a pistol.
Further accusing Hernandez, prosecutors said that employees working overnight shifts near where Lloyd`s body was found heard gunshots fired between 3:23 a.m. and 3:27 a.m, with Lloyd`s sister claiming that Hernandez and two other friends picked up her brother in a silver Nissan Altima on the day of his death.
Prosecutors further said that Lloyd was dating the sister of Hernandez`s fiancee.
Meanwhile, law enforcement sources said that a home security system, including video surveillance equipment, was intentionally destroyed at Hernandez`s house, adding that he had hired a team of house cleaners to wipe up his home on June 17.
Distancing themselves from now-former tight end, the Patriots expressed their sympathies over the death of Lloyd, adding that although they are disappointed at Hernandez`s arrest, they supported and respected the law enforcement investigations.
The Patriots, who drafted Hernandez out of the University of Florida in 2010, signed him to a seven-year, 40 million-dollar contract before last season, which included 9.25 million dollars in signing bonus money.
Since Hernandez was linked to Lloyd`s slaying, NFL executives have whispered that his draft stock in 2010 had fallen due to failed drugs tests and character questions, the report added.