Aaron Hernandez Acquitted in 2012 Double Murder
But the former NFL star is still serving life without parole for another murder
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 14, 2017 5:04 PM CDT
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Former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez cries as he turns to defense attorney Ronald Sullivan reacting to his double murder acquittal at Suffolk Superior Court Friday, April 14, 2017 in Boston.   (AP Photo/Stephan Savoia, Pool)

(Newser) – Former NFL star Aaron Hernandez was found not guilty Friday of murdering two men outside a Boston nightclub in 2012, Reuters reports. But that doesn't mean the ex-New England Patriot is going to be a free man any time soon. Hernandez is currently serving life without parole for murdering an acquaintance in 2013. The double murder charges stemmed from an altercation that reportedly started over a spilled drink and ended with Daniel de Abreu and Safiro Furtado dead. According to CNN, Hernandez was acquitted of all eight charges related to the double murder except for a single weapons possession charge. The judge added four to five years to the end of Hernandez's current life sentence for that charge.

Hernandez's defense team cites a lack of evidence as the reason for the acquittal and claims Hernandez's friend, who testified against him, is the actual killer. One of the eight charges against Hernandez was for witness intimidation for allegedly shooting the friend in the face to keep him from testifying. An attorney for Hernandez says the 27-year-old is "relieved" about the verdict. The attorney tells the Boston Globe he hopes people will now see Hernandez "for who he is—a very good young man." The district attorney says there's "some consolation" that Hernandez will remain behind bars regardless. He was found guilty two years ago in the 2013 murder of Odin Lloyd, the boyfriend of his fiance's sister.

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