The sad end of Aaron Hernandez

The sad end of Aaron Hernandez

He was transported to a MA hospital where a physician pronounced him dead at approximately 4:07 am (0807 GMT).

But the Patriots released him in 2013, shortly after he was arrested in the killing of semi-pro football player Odin Lloyd, who was dating the sister of Hernandez's fiancee.

Casting a pall over the ceremony was the news about Hernandez, who hanged himself in a prison cell hours before the White House visit, according to MA prison officials.

Leslie Walker, of Prisoners' Legal Services of MA, told WBUR's Deborah Becker on Morning Edition that prisoners are monitored to prevent suicide. He had attempted to block the door from the inside by jamming it with various items, prison officials said.

"We are aware of the reports, but I don't anticipate that we will be commenting today", a Patriots spokesperson said.

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Trump apparently called Handel Wednesday morning to congratulate her, according to a muted tweet she sent out. In a statement late Tuesday night, Ossoff described his strong showing as "a remarkable victory".

Lisa Newman-Polk, a former mental health worker at the prison, says prisoners serving life sentences are always flagged as higher risk for mental health problems.

Hernandez, Coyne points out, is hardly the first high-profile case in MA where a conviction was vacated in this manner.

According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, 41 inmates died by suicide in state and federal prisons in MA between 2001 and 2013.

Miami Dolphins center Mike Pouncey, a college teammate of Hernandez's, said on Instagram: "To my friend my brother!" Before that visit quarterback Tom Brady said he would not attend, writing in a statement that "in light of some recent developments" he was unable to attend due to "some personal family matters".

Hernandez's attorneys are promising a separate investigation into his death and a state senator is pointing to a bigger problem in the state's prisons.

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Hernandez's death has been ruled a suicide, although the ex-football star's lawyer and agent both have their doubts.

Early says Massachusetts' chief medical examiner is conducting an autopsy in Boston to determine the exact cause and manner of death. "He says that only God has the right to take somebody's life, and it's very painful to him when somebody takes his own life". Days ago, the 27-year-old former tight end was acquitted of a double murder.

"The family and legal team is shocked and surprised at the news of Aaron's death", Baez said in a statement to the Boston Herald.

Hernandez was convicted and sentenced to life in prison. A Bible opened to that verse was found in his cell.

On Twitter, some people said the timing of his death was unusual because he had just been cleared of the two killings.

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Brady didn't go to the White House, citing a family situation . "I think I've got this", Spicer replied, "But thank you". Chris Long also boycotted the ceremony while Alan Branch , like Brady, said he planned to spend time with family instead.

Under Massachusetts law, defense attorneys can seek to have convictions vacated when a defendant dies before an appeal is heard.

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