According to a newly-released Massachusetts State Police report, Aaron Hernandez tried to make like Jesus Christ upon killing himself behind prison bars on April 19.
As previously reported, the former New England Patriots tight end was found dead in his cell early that morning, just a few days after a jury acquitted him of double murder charges.
But Hernandez was still serving a lifetime sentence (with no possibility for parole) for having been found guilty previously of murdering a man named Odin Lloyd.
On Thursday night, authorities revealed to the public further details related to the suicide.
First, Hernandez sliced upon his right middle finger and used his own blood to draw circular marks on each of his feet.
The result was consistent with images of the feet on Jesus Christ after he was hanged from the cross.
Second, while previous reports had claimed Hernandez had also used own blood to scrawl "John 3:16" on his forehead, these documents say he used red pen for that act.
This bible verse that declares eternal life for all – even the most wicked – as long as they believe God sent his son to perish for their sins.
Third: On a table inside the cell, Hernandez had left a Bible open to John 3:16, with the verse marked in blood; he also wrote "John 3:16" on the wall in blood.
(The famous verse reads as follows: For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.)
Fourth: a toxicology report revealed no traces of drugs in Hernandez’s system, contradicting earlier allegations that Hernandez had used synthetic marijuana in the hours before he died.
This same report concludes that Hernandez’s death was due to suicide. It requests the case be closed unless further information becomes available.
In the days following his death, associates of the former star tight end had openly wondered whether Hernandez was murdered by someone at Souza-Baranowski Correctional Center in Shirley, Massachusetts.
They have not make similar remarks since.
However, with the state investigation now complete, Hernandez’s attorney, Jose Baez, issued a blistering statement that condemned the way authorities handled their investigation.
He also vowed an independent inquiry into the circumstances surrounding his late client's death.
Said Baez in this statement:
"The total lack of professionalism exhibited by government officials and their employees during this entire process is unprecedented.
"The majority of information contained in these reports was leaked to the press during the course of the investigation. The family … learned through the numerous press reports, citing unnamed government sources or those close to the investigation, of the details of Aaron’s death.
"The family members were victims in this matter and deserved better treatment by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
"We intend to fully, completely and impartially review all of the evidence in this matter. The best investigators and forensic experts available will conduct a thorough analysis."
Baez concludes by thanking those who have “sent their condolences,” but also issues a warning to Massachusetts authorities:
“Any official who attempts to interfere or inhibit our investigation by refusing to allow access to the evidence surrounding this matter will not be tolerated.
"We will use any and all of the legal tools at our disposal to expose and prevent any such interference."
Hernandez was locked in his cell at 7:59 p.m. on April 18, according to this official report, just after concluding a phone call.
Correction officers last observed him during the routine 1 a.m. bed check on April 19.
They say they listed to his final three phone calls and heard no indications that he was thinking of killing himself.
At approximately 3:03 a.m., officer Gerard Breau found a sheet covering Hernandez's cell door, preventing him from seeing inside.
Breau yelled at Hernandez to remove the sheet or at least respond.
When the did not hear back, Breau poked at the sheet until it fell to the ground... where he discovered Hernandez naked, hanging from a cut-up bed sheet tied to a bar on a window.
Hernandez had placed cardboard into the door tracks to make it more difficult to open.
He also covered the floor in shampoo to make it more challenging for officers to run and stop him if they discovered his body before he died... and also to make it more challenging for himself to prevent the suicide if his feet fell to the ground during the act.
Here is a photo of the bible found in Hernandez's cell:
In conclusion, this report confirms Hernandez left three suicide notes, although it does not specify to whom they were addressed.
It states that Hernandez's corpse showed marks around his neck, blood in his eyes and vomit and discharge from his mouth, each consistent with hanging.
Officers discovered no evidence of a struggle in the cell and no “trauma or violence on Hernandez’s body.”