Reports: NFL Star Facing Arrest in Murder Case

Your News Companion by Ben Mathis-Lilley
June 20 2013 4:24 PM

NFL Pro Bowler, Whose Friend Was Found Murdered, Has Some Serious Explaining to Do

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Aaron Hernandez #81 of the New England Patriots makes a catch during a game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at EverBank Field on December 23, 2012 in Jacksonville, Florida

Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez's rough week may be about to get a whole lot worse. Sports Illustrated, citing an unnamed source with knowledge of an ongoing murder investigation in Boston, reports this afternoon that the NFL player will likely be arrested in connection with the death of one of his friends. Boston.com's Steve Silva, also citing unidentified law enforcement sources, is suggesting the same thing. It is not yet clear what he would be charged with, however.

While police have so far stayed mum on a possible arrest, the idea that Hernandez could be taken into custody isn't exactly shocking in light of the information that has surfaced this week. Police have already interviewed the NFL star several times and searched his house in connection with the case. And if what sources are telling ABC News proves true, Hernandez may have some trouble explaining some curious decisions in the aftermath of his friend's death:

Police plan to go back to the home of New England Patriot's tight end Aaron Hernandez today with another warrant based on evidence that "he destroyed his home security system,'' an investigator close to the case told ABC News. The investigator, and other law enforcement sources, confirmed that the security system—which included video surveillance—was smashed intentionally. And a cell phone used by Hernandez was handed over to investigators "in pieces'' by his attorneys, the sources said. Police also want to know why a team of house cleaners were hired on Monday to scrub Hernandez's mansion, sources told ABC News.
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For those of you who have only kept one eye on this unfolding story, the investigation has to do with one of Hernandez's friends who was found dead earlier this week—and not separate allegations from another one of the Pro Bowler's former friends who claims that Hernandez shot him in the face back in February.

The murder investigation is into the death of 27-year-old Odin Lloyd, a semi-pro football player who was reportedly dating the sister of Hernandez's girlfriend. The two football players were reportedly spotted partying together at a club over the weekend, and Lloyd's body was then found Monday with a gunshot wound to the back of the head in an industrial park roughly a mile from the Patriot's million-dollar home. A rental car that was registered to Hernandez is also believed to have been spotted near the crime scene.

Josh Voorhees is a Slate senior writer. He lives in Iowa City.