SHIRLEY (CBS) – Former New England Patriot and convicted killer Aaron Hernandez killed himself in prison overnight, authorities said Wednesday morning.

Read: Keller: Think Before You Comment On Suicide

Here is the message sent out by Christopher Fallon, the Assistant Deputy Commissioner of Communications of the Massachusetts Department of Correction:

On April 19, 2017 Aaron Hernandez was discovered hanged in his cell by corrections officers at the Souza Baranowski Correctional Center in Shirley Massachusetts at approximately 3:05 a.m., lifesaving techniques were attempted on Mr. Hernandez and he was transported to UMASS Leominster where he was pronounced dead at 4:07 a.m. by a physician at the hospital.

Mr. Hernandez was in a single cell in a general population housing unit. Mr. Hernandez hanged himself utilizing a bed sheet that he attached to his cell window.

Mr. Hernandez also attempted to block his door from the inside by jamming the door with various items. The Massachusetts State Police are on scene and the investigation continues. Mr. Hernandez’s next of kin have been notified.

Aaron Hernandez reacts to the not guilty verdict in his double murder trial on April 14, 2017. (WBZ-TV)

Fallon later told WBZ-TV’s Anna Meiler that Hernandez was not on a suicide watch because there was no indication he wanted to harm himself. Corrections officers found him when they were doing a regular hourly round in the unit.

The WBZ-TV I-Team has learned Hernandez had the Bible verse John 3:16 written on his forehead, and that investigators are looking into the possibility that he smoked synthetic marijuana Tuesday night.

The I-Team also learned investigators believe the last person to see Hernandez alive was a 22-year-old friend and fellow inmate who is now under suicide watch.

There are no reports of a suicide note, Fallon said, adding that investigators are going through everything in his cell.

Defense attorney Jose Baez with Aaron Hernandez in court, March 2017. (WBZ-TV)

Hernandez’s lead attorney in his most recent trial, Jose Baez, said the “family and legal team is shocked and surprised at the news of Aaron’s death.”

“There were no conversations or correspondence from Aaron to his family or legal team that would have indicated anything like this was possible,” Baez said in a statement.

“Aaron was looking forward to an opportunity for a second chance to prove his innocence. Those who love and care about him are heartbroken and determined to find the truth surrounding his untimely death.”

Read: Timeline Of Aaron Hernandez Key Events

Hernandez’s body has been turned over to the state medical examiner’s office in Boston where an autopsy “will determine the cause and manner of death,” according to a statement from Worcester District Attorney Joe Early Jr.

WBZ-TV Chief Investigative reporter Cheryl Fiandaca said investigators will be looking into the time Hernandez entered his cell, the last time guards checked on him, and if there were any incidents leading up to his death.

Aaron Hernandez cried when the verdicts were read April 14, 2017. (WBZ-TV)

Just five days ago, Hernandez broke down in tears in court as he was acquitted of murder charges in the shooting deaths of Daniel de Abreu and Safiro Furtado in the South End in July 2012.

Juror Rosita Londono told WBZ-TV, “I was shocked, and then it turned into sadness,” when she heard the news Wednesday.

Read: Aaron Hernandez Coverage

Hernandez, 27, was serving a life sentence at the Souza-Baranowski Correctional Center for the murder of Odin Lloyd in June 2013.

Veteran defense attorney Randy Chapman told WBZ NewsRadio 1030 that Hernandez’s suicide may cause the murder conviction to be thrown out.

“That will likely be vacated because the conviction was not final, meaning that the state’s Supreme Court had not reviewed it for whether or not there were any errors during the course of the trial,” said Chapman.

Attorneys for the families of Odin Lloyd, de Abreu and Furtado say their wrongful death lawsuits will proceed despite Hernandez’s death.

The Souza Baranowski Correctional Center in Shirley. (WBZ-TV)

Hernandez leaves behind his fiancee, Shayanna Jenkins-Hernandez and their 4-year-old daughter Avielle.

He grew up in Bristol, Connecticut, became a standout tight end at the University of Florida and was drafted by the Patriots in 2010.

Tim Tebow and Aaron Hernandez during their days at Florida. (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)

He quickly became a star and the Patriots signed him to a five-year contract extension in August 2012, just a month after de Abreu and Furtado were murdered.

In June 2013 he was charged with shooting Lloyd to death, a short distance from his home in North Attleboro and the Patriots released him.

Hernandez was found guilty of first-degree murder in April 2015.  He was reportedly on a suicide watch briefly after that verdict.

In an interview last Thursday, Patriots coach Bill Belichick called the Hernandez story a “tragedy” and “heartbreaking.”

In this 2012 photo, Bill Belichick and Aaron Hernandez chat at the beginning of a Patriots practice at Gillette. (Photo credit: Boston Herald)

The Super Bowl champion Patriots are visiting the White House Wednesday, where they will meet with President Trump.

The Patriots declined to comment on Hernandez’s suicide Wednesday.

Read: NFL Reaction To Hernandez Suicide

His former agent, Brian Murphy, tweeted this reaction to the news:

WATCH: Aaron Hernandez Suicide: ‘Tragic End To Tragic Story’

Comments (201)
    1. Tom Johnston says:

      Wonder how many of his thug life team mates who boycott” the white house visit go to this guys funeral. Kind of will show where their priorities lie.

  1. The authorities claim his cell was blocked.

    1. bees_knees_6 says:

      He blocked it from inside….enough to slow down entrance, not enough to stop it.

  2. Saving Taxpayers $50,000 pa. A rope should be standard issue in every cell.

  3. His last play , was his most productive , COWARD

  4. It is sad when a ‘good’ life is ruined and wasted…”Who can explain it; who can tell you why. Fools will give you reasons, wise-men never try.”

    1. Meanwhile, Aunt Martha, having taken a tramp in the wood, is lying in a ditch at the edge of town.

      1. Lori, you’re a riot!

  5. John Jupiter says:

    good job,,,,loser. Thank You for saving the taxpayers big money .

  6. Nonkly Nonk says:

    So i guess in the end, he was guilty and couldnt bear the weight of his mistakes. So sad.

    1. Chris Rusin says:

      that is not a correct assumption unless he specified it in writing or verbally to someone

  7. Wonderful! Think of all the money and effort and care the State of Massachusetts is now going to save by not having to deal with this POS.

  8. Wow, I guess he really was disappointed over being found not guilty.

  9. Jim Barber says:

    Too bad he didn’t do this after his first conviction or murder. Would have saved a lot of dollar$, time, cell space, court time and internet space. He has just gone to where he should have gone a lot sooner.
    Maybe the State of Arkansas should just hang those eight murderers and forget the chemicals.

  10. At least he didn’t change his name to Mohamed, thank him for that….

  11. He flushed away his great, God-given talent because he rather lived a Thug Life™ instead. In the end, he decided that he could burden the failure no longer. I feel terrible for his family, but I am happy for the taxpayers who no longer have to feed, treat, and house the loser.

    1. What is this “God given talent” everyone keeps talking about?
      You mean the ability to run with a football and block people in a stupid, meaningless game.
      So I guess that God of yours is a football fan?

      1. Whoa, you have issues. It’s an expression people use when someone is BORN with superior talents in something, whether it be academics, music, or sports. This guy did have athletic talent. Just accept it.

      2. Steve Barker says:

        His natural talent is indisputable. The value you place on that talent is opinion.

      3. Willie, try reaching behind yourself and pulling that stick out your backside, it makes you less sociable.

      4. That’s what those who can’t throw like to believe.

  12. Aj Baliboo says:

    Did he get his McNuggets first?

  13. Well that saves the state a lot of money.

  14. Maybe being acquitted for murders he committed got to him??

  15. POS finally did something right for a change. I’m sure the fact that he saved taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars didn’t cross his mind, but good for him anyway.

  16. His fame means nothing. Just one less murdering thug we no longer have to pay to feed and house. Good riddance to bad rubbish.

    1. I also find it unpleasant to see so many comments regarding money. Even in a story like this- the comments show the commenters real interest .. not justice or that this man that everyone admired, fell so low and killed himself. No, they just think about the money.

  17. James Dunham says:

    And just this week Cris Carter was saying he’ll never play in the NFL again, and he was dead to him……way to go Cris.

  18. Carl Ball says:

    who cares! thanks for saving the taxpayers money to house you!

  19. Rusty Harris says:

    Well, taxpayers are OFF THE HOOK for his lifetime in prison. Hope he asked forgiveness from God, because spending eternity in H*LL isn’t a good thing!

  20. I feel sorry for his victims, known and unknown.

  21. Save The TATS! Strip his skin from bone and display the ThugTATS in the Hall of Shame. Charge the hero worshipers to view his empty dressing. #ThugLifeBKool- Bye Bye

  22. Pete Wagner says:

    So he paid off the jailer? …Wait until he gets the bill from the coroner!

  23. Alan Whitney says:

    Couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy…

  24. For once in his life Hernandez finally did the right thing.

  25. One less expense for the tax-payer to suffer. There are enough thugs in this country where this solution should be offered freely to any criminal convicted of violent crime.

    “Here’s a rope, son…do the right thing.”

  26. Jeff Smith says:

    And nothing of value was lost.

  27. Stehr Va says:

    Although I quite agree wth the sentiments shared here, he does have a little girl and someday she may see these comments and that would be very sad. I mean as evil as he was and he got what he deserved he was still her father and it would be hard enough living with that and the fact that he was a murderer and violent man, she does not need to hear or see cruel comments. Just a thought.

    1. Canine Jake says:

      He wasn’t a father, he was a sperm donor. There’s a difference.

  28. This is a good savings for the taxpayers of Massachusetts.

  29. Jack Inmanz says:

    Hmmmm. Not guilty one day, “suicide” the next. No matter. On to the next murderous tattooed freak.

  30. Joe Jacobs says:

    Poster boy for how drug and alcohol abuse can take over your life

  31. Such a waste of a great head of hair.

  32. Boo Hoo…this murdering antisocial gang-banging piece of excrement is in Hell where he belongs. Am I supposed to give a damn that he offed himself? Perhaps Kapernick will follow his example. Michael Vic, too. The NFL is filled with thugs and criminals – I quit watching football several years ago when it became apparent that the only direction it was headed was downhill. Good riddance!

    1. Joe Jacobs says:

      that’s why I call it gangsta ball

  33. Good Riddance he was a horrible human as bad a human as the Patriots are a football team!

  34. Jack Pod says:

    If the previous conviction is thrown out, does that mean that Hernandez could be resurrected from the dead and set free?

  35. Dude is so dumb, he probably thought he was getting out of prison when he was acquitted last week of the two other guys he killed… only to realize he still had a life term with no parole. It finally just dawned on the thug.

  36. That was one guy who you could see the evil in his eyes. He was scary. Enjoy Hell.

  37. I came here to post this comment that I am stunned that MATT DRUDGE,has this story of this piece of human feces on his front page,a story of how the GOP tried to help democrats win the Georgia seat yesterday is the story worth writing about,not this piece of human feces.

  38. That is the Georgia betreyal is more noteworthy.

  39. For all the crass comments – consider this.

    Society failed Aaron Hernandez. He had no father figure. he was a lost soul with no God. He was used and his life destroyed. Urban Meyer knew the problems, forced him to room with Tim Teebow – but NO professional help at UF.
    May all those in authority that could have helped Aaron hang their heads in shame. This poor misguided soul should have been given the guidance, counseling and help he needed. Instead he was used.
    What a waste – and so sad for his daughter.

    1. Charlie Manson claims the same thing; that’s he’s rotten because of society. That’s BS. As adults we have a choice. Hernandez chose to kill his “friend”. He chose to hang with gangs. It’s not our fault he made those bad decisions.

  40. Love to start the day with good news!

  41. Warren Rose says:

    Condolences to the family. This was still son, brother, uncle no matter how bad he was. Surely he made his peace with God. Sorry he got sucked into the wickedness of this world and went down the wrong path.

  42. Joe Addazio and Urban Meyer deserve an assist for teaching a young Aaron Hernandez how to break his word.

  43. Ernie Ernie says:

    Probably couldn’t stand the pain knowing he got off for killing two people by a jury that couldn’t get it right. A racist jusry that heard one eye witness who said he saw him shoot the two people and they cant find him guilty? Ya hispanics never commit crimes, must be a frame up. good riddence. What a waste of talent.

  44. Ernie Ernie says:

    Living with the fact he killed three people was horrid. Living with the fact he’s not going to meet Donald Trump today with the Pats at the White House was way too much to take

  45. Rob Lynn says:

    He should have done it sooner. All that money wasted in prosecuting and defending him.

  46. I doubt the truth of this most likely someone with access was mad he just won the other cases and did not want him to possibly win more on appeal…

  47. And they think the death penalty is cruel and unusual punishment, but not sticking a man in a 6×4 room for the rest of his life. Looks like the death penalty was less cruel.

  48. he could have done it earlier and save taxpayers money.

  49. snailmailtrucker says:

    What took him so freaking long ?

  50. Does this have something to do with the “family matters” preventing Tom Brady from going the the White House with the team? Makining funeral arrangements, writing a eulogy, whatever?

  51. Willam Nat says:

    An anti-role-model POS. Hernandez was totally selfish. How many young people will imagine this as a way out of their problems because he did it and the media is playing it 24-7?

  52. John Oakman says:

    Well, well wonder what Hell is gonna look like??

  53. This very young man was a victim of steroids, there is very rich man out there who supplied him and is still supplying others. It is a billion dollar industry.

  54. The NFL is filled with a lot of stable, fine upstanding citizens who make great roles models for kids.

  55. I know he did something terrible but at the same time, I think this is very sad.

  56. Must have really been crushed by the years added onto his life without parole he already had. Sad that such a talent was wasted because he couldn’t just do like the vast majority of us and not go out and kill someone in cold blood.

  57. What’s truly sad is, you can take the player out of the neighborhood, but you can’t take the neighborhood out of the player…..gang banger all throughout High School, Ohio State and Patriots….did everyone ignore this, or did the elite athlete get all the free passes they all seem to get….somebody dropped the ball on this one…. all the recent success by his old team had to eat him up…sad sad

  58. I hope it wasn’t suicide. Murdering trash should die so easy.

    1. That’s “SHOULDN’T” “Shouldn’t die so easy!”

  59. He made his choices, we are masters of our destiny…

  60. Had everything and gave it up to align with a group of human garbage. Other “anti-anything” groups should learn from this. BLM, occupy whatever, etc. All lives matter until you give yours away. Aaron traded his life for the magic beans of being a ganstra. He was something now is not only nothing he is dead.

  61. Wow I can’t believe this! He was such a talent, it is a shame that he decided to turn to the streets and this thug lifestyle when he had so much potential. Very sad.

  62. Peter York says:

    at least he did the right thing

  63. Now if only Casey Anthony will follow suit. Other good outcome is Baez gets a rep for being the suicide attorney.

  64. The thug life claims another victim.

  65. Hernandez exemplifies the term “Shakespearean Fall.”

  66. Aaron Hernandez out indefinitely. Neck injury.

  67. putin was obviously behind this

  68. Kyle Elmer says:

    The comments of the juror are absolutely sickening.

  69. Sparky Mills says:

    Sentence was carried out –

  70. Thank you! This is a very good thing that you have saved us so much money and we couldn’t careless. You were convicted of murder.

  71. lilydarcey says:

    Karma came back to bite him.

  72. Bob Vangrin says:

    Does anyone know where Hillary was when this happened?

  73. Aldous Homer says:

    Somebody else KILL HIM. Don’t believe the story about suicide.

  74. You will get no sympathy from me regarding Hernandez’ death. This guy had it all, and made tens of millions of dollars to play a stupid childish game which propelled him to fame and fortune. But, at the risk of losing it all he chose “thug life” over maturity and responsibility. He chose murder and crime over charity and cultural advancement. I’m glad he took the chicken exit to save the cost of his incarceration. Good riddance.

  75. People say there is a RACE problem. People say this RACE problem will be solved when the third world pours into EVERY and ONLY into White countries.

    People say the only solution to the RACE problem is if ALL and ONLY White countries “assimilate,” i.e., intermarry, with all those non-Whites.

    But if I tell that obvious truth about the ongoing program of genocide against White people, Anti-Whites agree that I am a naziwhowantstokillsixmillionjews.

    Anti-racist is a codeword for anti-White.

  76. I wonder if repeated head injuries had anything to do with his obviously dysfunctional brain…Nobody will ever know except the M.E… The stories of murder, rape and idiocy are very prevalent in the NFL…SMH!

  77. Stehr Va says:

    Wow, tough gang member. As soon as he has to PAY for his crimes he goes and offs himself to avoid haying the consequences of his actions. Why is anyone giving this whole pile of S any thought at all?

  78. People have chest and back tumors and this moron tattooos himself?

  79. pity for you, hernandez? you had it ALL and BLEW IT, YOU CHUMP…JUST LIKE O.J!!!!!!!

  80. Glorification of another killer. Why???

  81. Ana Phila says:

    I guess it makes sense that his family questions what the people in the prison say, if there is not a real not from the guy that express the desire to kill himself it is complicated to believe that he took his own life.