Guards found him unresponsive just after 3 a.m. Wednesday. After officers attempted life-saving procedures, he was rushed to UMass Memorial-HealthAlliance Hospital where he was pronounced dead about an hour later.
State police were investigating the circumstances of the death of the former rising star in the National Football League, and a coroner was performing an autopsy on Wednesday.
Hernandez's agent said he doesn't believe that he would have taken his own life, as Hernandez's lawyers said they are looking to start their own investigation, which is on top of the investigation now being done by the District Attorney's office.
"I've always known Aaron Hernandez as someone who was in complete control", Bristol County Sheriff Thomas Hodgson said.
Baez said there were no conversations or correspondence to his family or legal team that would have indicated that anything like this was possible. "Aaron was looking forward to an opportunity for a second chance to prove his innocence". He says Hernandez's loved ones are "heartbroken and determined to find the truth surrounding his untimely death". And whether intentional or not, his suicide coincided with his former team's visit to the White House, casting a pall on the Patriots' Super Bowl reception. Hernandez had been serving a life sentence for the 2013 murder of Odin Lloyd.
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WBZ also noted that Hernandez was found with markings that were drawn on both his hands and feet.
"Unfortunately, in the Odin Lloyd matter, for the family, there won't be any real closure", said Healy.
Last week, Hernandez was acquitted of all but a gun charge in a lengthy trial in the 2012 shooting deaths of Safiro Furtado and Daniel de Abreu.
Hernandez's appeal had not yet been heard. "He was charged for something somebody else did, and that is a weighty burden for anyone to shoulder".
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He escaped the gangs of Bristol, Connecticut, by accepting a football scholarship at the University of Florida, where he became an All-American and a member of the Gators BSC Championship team.
Hernandez played for the Patriots from 2010 to 2012 and he helped them reach the Super Bowl in his second year.
Still, with future Hall of Famer Tom Brady throwing to him, Hernandez shined for New England. At the time, Hernandez had a $40 million contract with the Patriots.
When it opened in 1998, the prison was seen as one of the most technically advanced in the nation, housing over 1,000 inmates with 366 cameras rolling 24/7.
"We are aware of the reports, but don't anticipate that we will be commenting today", a Patriots official told The Boston Globe.
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