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Hernandez’s lawyer says it’s 'very hard' to accept his client apparently committed suicide

While authorities said Aaron Hernandez was found hanging in his cell at a maximum security prison in Shirley early Wednesday morning, his lawyers are questioning if the convicted murderer would have killed himself. (WJAR)

While authorities said Aaron Hernandez was found hanging in his cell at a maximum security prison in Shirley early Wednesday morning, his lawyers are questioning if the convicted murderer would have killed himself.

Several Boston media outlets report he had "John 3:16,” which is a Bible reference, written on his forehead.

Hernandez was locked up for life following his conviction two years ago in the murder of Odin Lloyd in North Attleborough.

Now, state police and prison authorities are investigating his death.

His lawyers said there were no signs of suicide and they plan to seek answers in what happened.

“I can only speak about the Aaron Hernandez that I knew,” Robert Proctor, Hernandez’s attorney, said. “He was a gracious, kind, generous person who treated us all with the utmost respect. We genuinely liked Aaron as a person. He was an eternal optimist. It's very hard for me to accept the fact the he may have committed suicide. We are keeping an open mind.”

Hernandez's lawyers just won an acquittal in a Boston double murder case. The father of one of the victims spoke out through a translator.

“As a Christian, a person, he never likes to see anyone die,” Salvatore Furtado said.

William Kennedy, who is one of the victim’s lawyers, shared similar sentiments.

“They take no joy in what's happened to him and to, more particularly, to his family,” he said.

The victims' families will continue their civil wrongful death lawsuit against Hernandez.

“He also has a loss that will never be satisfied,” Kennedy said. “But he wants to see accountability for his son's death.”

Meanwhile, under Massachusetts law, a conviction can be vacated -- and typically is -- when the defendant dies before his appeal is decided, which is the case with Hernandez.

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