Former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez was indicted Thursday on first-degree murder and weapons charges in the death of a friend whose bullet-riddled body was found in an industrial park about a mile from the ex-player’s home.
The six-count grand- jury indictment charges Hernandez with killing 27-year-old Odin Lloyd, a semiprofessional football player from Boston who was dating the sister of Hernandez’s girlfriend.
Hernandez, 23, pleaded not guilty to murder and weapons charges in June, and he is being held without bail.
He had a brief court appearance in Attleboro on Thursday. Afterward, his attorney Michael Fee said the defense was pleased to be on a path to a jury trial and was looking forward to testing the prosecution’s evidence.
Hernandez last summer signed a contract worth $40 million but was cut by the Patriots within hours of his June 26 arrest, when police led the handcuffed athlete from his home as news cameras rolled. He could face life in prison if convicted.
The Bristol County grand jury also indicted two others in the case: Hernandez associate Ernest Wallace and Hernandez’s cousin Tanya Singleton.
Wallace is charged with accessory to murder after the fact. Prosecutors have said he was with Hernandez the night Lloyd died.
Singleton is charged with criminal contempt for refusing to testify before the grand jury, Bristol County District Attorney Samuel Sutter said. She has been jailed since Aug. 1. A recent affidavit said that, after Lloyd’s killing, Singleton bought Wallace a bus ticket.