Details about Aaron Hernandez’s life and death in prison are emerging, while many questions remain unanswered.
An examination of the Massachusetts Department of Correction’s report on the investigation into Aaron Hernandez’s April 19 suicide at Souza-Baranowski Correctional Center in Shirley, Mass., uncovers several things about the former New England Patriot’s life behind bars. NESN obtained the file from the DOC on Friday through a public records request.
The 132-page prison file confirms many media stories about Hernandez’s final days. Parts of it contains mundane information such as how many pairs of sneakers Hernandez possessed, while others reveal bombshells such as his hopes of returning to the NFL, other inmates’ impressions of him and observations about his spirituality.
Other interesting highlights of Hernandez’s prison file include:
Hernandez’s known enemies
Following his June 2013 arrest for the murder of Odin Lloyd and his subsequent conviction, Hernandez was incarcerated in at least three facilities. We learned on Page 29 of the DOC report that Hernandez had amassed five known enemies in Massachusetts prisons.
The DOC redacted the inmates’ names, but prison officials believe altercations between Hernandez and any of those inmates would occur if they came into contact. Hernandez already had clashed with a few of them.
Pages 34 through 36 contain photos and descriptions of Hernandez’s tattoos, and there’s lots of them.
Both of Hernandez’s arms and hands were covered in tattoos, as were his chest and abdomen. The message “born to play this game” was tattooed on the middle of his chest. Ink on his middle abdomen read “remind me we will always have each other,” and his lower abdomen contained the phrase “mind on the money.” A tattoo on his left calf contained his daughter’s name, Avielle.
Hernandez had plenty of other tattoos, and the report includes pictures of them.
Hernandez’s taste in music
Lists of Hernandez’s property revealed ways in which he entertained himself in prison.
Page 117 shows Hernendez owned a 13-inch Skyworth television, a MAXX Pro MP3/MP4 player, a Sony Clear Digital Walkman (which might have been a CD player), and AMPD ear buds and Skull Candy headphones.
Officials monitored the music contained on Hernandez’s devices. Rihanna’s “Selfish Girl” and “Unfaithful” from her “A Girl Like Me” album were installed on them, as was “The Weeknd’s “Earned It” from the Fifty Shades of Grey Remixed album, and Drake’s “U With Me?” and “With You” from his “Views” albums. These and other songs Hernandez enjoyed appear on Page 45.
Phone calls before his suicide
Hernandez made seven calls on the evening before he died. The calls were monitored, and Page 52 notes “all content was future oriented and did not elicit any concerns for safety, even in retrospect.”
Page 99 contains a photo of the cover of Hernandez’s Bible, and the next page has a photo of a drop of his blood next to John 3:16 — the verse he wrote on his forehead in ink, officials said.
Accounts of the hours after his death
Pages 54 through 79 include various prison officials’ accounts of Hernandez’s suicide and the immediate aftermath. The chilling descriptions conform to most media reports about his suicide.
Thumbnail photo via The Sun Chronicle/USA TODAY Sports Images