Former NFL star Aaron Hernandez, who was serving a life sentence for a 2013 murder conviction, died early Wednesday morning after apparently hanging himself in his Massachusetts prison cell, authorities said.
Officials at Souza-Baranowski Correctional Center in Shirley said in a statement that guards found Hernandez unresponsive in his cell just after 3 a.m.
Hernandez, 27, who was in a single cell in a general population unit at the maximum security prison, hanged himself with a bed sheet that he attached to his cell window, authorities said. Hernandez also attempted to block his cell door from the inside by jamming the door with various items.
Lifesaving measures were attempted on Hernandez, who was taken to UMass Memorial-HealthAlliance Hospital in Leominster and pronounced dead shortly after 4 a.m.
An investigation is ongoing, authorities said.
The former New England Patriots tight end was serving a life sentence without the possibility of parole for the 2013 fatal shooting of Odin Lloyd, who was dating the sister of Hernandez’s fiancée. On Friday, he was acquitted of double murder in an unrelated case.