New England Patriots Head Coach Bill Belichick was on the witness list in the Aaron Hernandez Double Murder trial. He never took the witness stand. Now we know what he might have said had he been called to testify.
In an interview with the LawNewz Network, defense attorney Ronald Sullivan explained why Aaron Hernandez subpoenaed his former coach as a potential witness.
“Coach Belichick would have corroborated if called that Aaron [Hernandez] was afraid,” Sullivan said.
“Our contention was that he [Hernandez] was afraid of Alexander Bradley because Alexander Bradley was a known killer, and Alexander Bradley was dangerous, and Alexander Bradley was after Aaron,” Sullivan told us.
Hernandez “actually asked . . . to meet with Coach Belichick to tell him that some things were going on, and that he was afraid, and that he might need to change jurisdictions. We were going to use him for that purpose. We subpoenaed him late in the process and ultimately decided that it wasn’t worth it,” Sullivan said.
By “change jurisdictions,” Sullivan meant that Hernandez asked for a trade.
“While Coach Belichick’s testimony would have added something to the case, as a strategic matter, we felt strongly that the government had not met its burden of proof — wasn’t even close to meeting its burden of proof — and that our better course was to keep our case as short as possible and get the matter to the jury,” Sullivan explained. “Indeed, we even considered not putting on a case at all. We were that confident that the government had not met its burden.”
Hernandez had been accused of killing Daniel de Abreu and Safiro Furtado after they left a Boston nightclub in July 2012. He was acquitted of all charges related to that case except for a weapons possession charge. Despite his acquittal in the de Abreu and Furtado cases, Hernandez remains serving a prison sentence regarding the murder of semi-pro football player Odin Lloyd on June 17, 2013. He was convicted separately in that case.
[Image via screen grab from ESPN.]