BOSTON -- At least one company yanked an endorsement deal from New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez on Friday as puzzled family members of a friend found slain a mile from Hernandez’s home sought answers about how he died.
Police have searched in and around Hernandez’s sprawling home in North Attleborough, not far from where the Patriots practice, but a court clerk said that as of Friday afternoon no arrest warrants had been issued in the case. The Bristol County district attorney has not released any information, other than saying the death of semi-pro football player Odin Lloyd was being treated as a homicide.
A jogger found Lloyd’s body in an industrial park Monday. Family members said Friday that Lloyd had been dating Hernandez’s fiancee’s sister for about two years. They said the two men were friends who were together the night Lloyd died.
Police in nearby Providence, R.I., said they had assisted Massachusetts state police and North Attleborough police with activity related to the Hernandez investigation at a strip club named Club Desire. It was unclear if they believed Lloyd and Hernandez might have been at the club in the days before Lloyd died. A reporter was escorted out of the club Friday afternoon before she could speak with employees or patrons.
Family members have said Lloyd, 27, was never in trouble.
"I want the person that killed my son to be brought to justice," said Lloyd’s mother, Ursula Ward. "That’s my first-born child, my only boy child, and they took him away from me. ... I wouldn’t trade him for all the money in the world. And if money could bring him back I would give this house up to bring my son back. Nothing can bring my son back."
Family members said they had heard from Lloyd’s girlfriend but not from Hernandez after Lloyd’s death. They are anxiously awaiting an arrest in the case.
"We’re just hoping for justice," cousin Marsha Martin said. "We don’t want Odin to have died in vain."
Hernandez’s attorney Michael Fee has acknowledged media reports about the state police search of his Hernandez’s home but said he wouldn’t have any comment on it.
Attleboro District Court clerk magistrate Mark E. Sturdy said three search warrants were issued in the investigation earlier in the week but have not been returned, meaning they’re not public. He said no arrest warrants had been filed in state courts by the time court closed at 4:30 p.m. Friday.
Hernandez was gone from his home for most of the day Friday, including when two state police officers knocked on his door. He returned home with his attorney around 5 p.m.
Patriots spokesman Stacey James has said the team does not anticipate commenting publicly during the police investigation.