Valet: Saw ex-NFL star Hernandez with gun before slaying

Wed Mar 11, 2015 12:51pm EDT
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By Daniel Lovering

FALL RIVER, Mass. (Reuters) - A parking valet supervisor testified on Tuesday he saw New England Patriots star Aaron Hernandez with what appeared to be a gun tucked in his waistband outside a Boston hotel two nights before prosecutors say he murdered an associate.

Samson Michael said he was working at the W Boston hotel around 1:30 a.m. on June 15, 2013, when he saw Hernandez through the passenger side window of a black SUV parked outside the hotel.

"I noticed a gentleman with his shirt (pulled) up to his chest and what looks like a gun in his waistband," he said, referring to Hernandez.

Shortly afterward, Hernandez drove several people including his babysitter and his alleged victim, semiprofessional football player Odin Lloyd, in the SUV to an apartment he rented in Franklin, Massachusetts, the babysitter testified this week.

Hernandez, 25, is on trial at Bristol County Superior Court in Fall River, Massachusetts, on murder and firearms charges. If convicted, he faces a maximum penalty of life in prison.

Prosecutors contend Hernandez and two friends, Ernest Wallace and Carlos Ortiz, picked up Lloyd at his Boston home in the early hours of June 17, 2013, and drove him to an industrial park near Hernandez's house in North Attleborough, Massachusetts, where his bullet-riddled body was found.

Wallace and Ortiz have also been charged with murder.

Assistant District Attorney Patrick Bomberg showed jurors a text message that prosecutors have said was sent by Hernandez to his fiancée, Shayanna Jenkins, two days before the murder, referring to Lloyd and saying he had made a mistake.   Continued...

The hands of former NFL player Aaron Hernandez (L) and his attorney are seen during his murder trial at the Bristol County Superior Court in Fall River, Massachusetts March 11,  2015. REUTERS/Dominick Reuter/Pool