Patriots TE Aaron Hernandez taken into custody by police
Former Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez was taken into custody Wednesday morning, more than a week after authorities began their investigation into the murder of Odin Lloyd.
Ten to 12 police officers pulled up to Hernandez's home in North Attleboro, Mass., went inside, and emerged with the former Patriots tight end, who was wearing a white t-shirt, baggy red gym shorts, and had his hands cuffed behind his back. Hernandez was then put into the back of a police cruiser before being driven away.
Less than two hours after Hernandez was arrested, the Patriots released him.
Charges into Hernandez's arrest have yet to be made public, although ABC News did report that an arrest warrant for obstruction of justice had been drawn up but not issued.
The Massachusetts State Police issued this statement Wednesday morning: "We are not releasing the charge against Hernandez until it is presented to the court. Again, he will be arraigned in Attleboro Court today."
Once Hernandez is charged, his legal team -- which has added noted defense attorney Jamie Sultan -- will jump into action. According to ESPN, Sultan and Hernandez met in Hernandez's home for about 40 minutes Tuesday, the day before the tight end was taken into custody.
A timeline of events leading up Wednesday's arrest:
- Last Tuesday, it was reported that Hernandez had been questioned by police but he was not believed to be a suspect of any kind. At that point, the reports were that Lloyd might be an associate of Hernandez's.
- On Wednesday, Hernandez was not ruled out as a suspect, and the vehicle that was rented in his name had become a major piece of the investigation. After searching his home Tuesday, police returned Wednesday, but Hernandez was not home at the time.
- News also emerged Wednesday that Hernandez was to be sued by a man whom he allegedly shot in the face in February. It later came out that Alexander Bradly is a convicted drug dealer.
- On Thursday, reports emerged that Hernandez was "directly tied" to the homicide."[Hernandez] has not been ruled out. We are not calling him a suspect, but he is definitely not in the clear," a police official close to the investigation told ABC News. Hernandez also apparently turned over to police a cellphone that had been smashed, while his home security system had been destroyed. It was also revealed a cleaning crew reportedly had done work at Hernandez's home early in the week.
- There were also conflicting reports on whether Hernandez would be arrested. Meanwhile, Sports Illustrated reported Hernandez had been involved in at least two other gun-related incidents. One reportedly occured in Providence last May, when a Jets fan confronted Hernandez and police later found a gun under a car (though it was unclear whose gun it was). The other occurred when he attended Florida in 2007, when he was questioned by police regarding a shooting that happened after a Florida-Auburn game (Hernandez was not considered a suspect in that case).
- On Friday, there were multiple reports that an arrest warrant had been issued for Hernandez, but the Attleboro (Mass.) Clerk of Courts told CBSSports.com's Will Brinson, "We have nothing issued from this court right now."
- CytoSport, makers of Muscle Milk, announced Friday that it was ending Hernandez's endorsement deal.
- During the weekend, more than a dozen officers and two K-9 dogs arrived at Hernandez's house and conducted a search that lasted nearly four hours. Investigators left with multiple bags of what were assumed to be evidence.
- On Monday, police returned to Hernandez's residence, and some in scuba gear with metal detectors investigated the creek near his house.
- By Monday evening, Hernandez's attorney, Michael Fee, issued a statement ripping the media for "relentless flood of rumors, misinformation, and false reports," regarding his client. "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," Fee continued. "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.”
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