BOSTON (CN) – As the New England Patriots celebrate their Super Bowl win, imprisoned former tight end Aaron Hernandez faces jury selection Tuesday for his second murder trial.
Two years after receiving a life sentence for the 2013 murder of Odin Lloyd, 27-year-old Hernandez is awaiting trial on a drive-by shooting in Boston’s South End.
As with Lloyd, prosecutors say the carnage erupted after Hernandez felt disrespected at a nightclub. Here Hernandez is said to have followed five men out of the club Cure on July 16, 2012, because they did not apologize for spilling Hernandez’s drink when one of them bumped into him.
Hernandez allegedly opened fire on the BMW being driven by the five men, killing Daniel de Abreu and Safiro Furtado.
Suffolk Assistant District Attorney Patrick Haggan will lead the commonwealth’s case against the former NFL star, with Judge Jeffrey Locke presiding.
Jose Baez, who famously defended Casey Anthony against murder allegations in Florida following the death of her 2-year-old daughter, will lead Hernandez’s defense.
Jury selection had initially been slated for Monday but was delayed by a snow storm.
Alexander Bradley, a former friend of Hernandez’s who has sued the ex-football pro for once shooting him in the face, is expected to serve as a key witness for the prosecution.
Bradley claims to have been in the car with Hernandez when he allegedly killed de Abreu and Furtado. Their friendship soured after that, and Hernandez apparently shot Bradley in 2013 as the two were leaving Tootsie’s Cabaret, a Miami Gardens strip club.
Court records show that it was shortly after this shooting that Bradley began texting Hernandez about the 2012 drive-by. Last year, the Massachusetts Supreme Court refused to let Hernandez exclude the cellphone containing such evidence from the upcoming trial.
Hernandez’s attorneys were also unsuccessful at blocking two of Hernandez’s tattoos from being submitted as evidence.
Prosecutors say Hernandez got a tattoo in March or April 2013 of a gun with five rounds in the chamber.
That is the same number of shots fired into de Abreu and Safiro’s BMW.
The tattoo also has the words “God forgives,” which the commonwealth claims is essentially an admission of guilt. The words are backward so that they can be read in a mirror.
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