It's not a good week for New England Patriots player Aaron Hernandez, who yesterday was roped into a murder investigation. A Massachusetts man, 27-year-old Odin Lloyd, was found murdered and a rental car linked to Hernandez was found nearby. Though initial reports said that Hernandez was not a suspect but his associates were, newer reports are saying that the football player has not been ruled out. Hernandez has reportedly been questioned, and his house and rental car were being searched in relation to the crime.
Today comes news that a lawsuit has been filed in the Southern District of Florida by a man named Alexander S. Bradley. According to the suit, the plaintiff went to Tootsie's strip club in Miami with Hernandez and a few other people on or about February 13 of this year. There, Bradley and Hernandez argued.
Then, in a car heading up to Palm Beach, "defendant had in his possession a gun. The gun discharged."
And "defendant caused gun to go off while aiming it at the plaintiff."
The lawsuit accuses the football player, who attended the University of Florida, of being unlicensed to carry a firearm, untrained to use it, and "reckless, careless, and negligent."
The plaintiff says he suffered loss of his right eye and underwent multiple surgeries.
Palm Beach County Sheriff's Department handled the shooting incident, but a police report from the agency had not come through at press time. Riviera Beach police said they did not have any reports related to the case.
ESPN is reporting that the victim and the football player were friends for several years. According to TMZ, the victim was found bleeding outside of a John Deere store in Riviera Beach. He asked the man who found him to call 911, and when officers arrived, he was uncooperative. Eventually he said that "both Hispanic and black males" shot him.
A call to the plaintiff's attorney was not immediately returned.
No one answered the phone at a number for John Deere Landscapes in Riviera Beach, and its voice mailbox was full.
Regarding the murder investigation in Massachusetts, Boston reporter Peter Lloyd Tweeted that "Family of Odin Lloyd tells WBZ-TV that Lloyd dated the sister of Aaron Hernandez's girlfriend." Hernandez's girlfriend is reportedly named Shayanna Jenkins. They have a child together. Here are pictures.
Hernandez is a tight end who was drafted in 2010 and last year signed a contact extension that included a $12 million-plus signing bonus.