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Gainesville police: Aaron Hernandez is not a suspect in 2007 shooting

July 03, 2013|By Chuck Schilken
  • Former New England tight end Aaron Hernandez is not a suspect in the 2007 shooting of two men near a Florida nightclub, Gainesville police told USA Today.
Former New England tight end Aaron Hernandez is not a suspect in the 2007… (Elise Amendola / Associated…)

Former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez is not a suspect in the 2007 shooting of two men near a Florida nightclub, Gainesville police told USA Today last week.

This information was released by the newspaper Thursday, the day after ESPN's "Outside the Lines" reported that Massachusetts police had contacted Gainesville police to determine if Hernandez had anything to do with that incident.

"The description of the shooter was a black male. It was not even remotely close to Mr. Hernandez's color or build," Gainesville Police Officer Ben Tobias told USA Today. "We did a thorough investigation at that point, and it did not lead to him whatsoever."

The "Outside the Lines" report said ESPN obtained a copy of the police report from the 2007 incident, during which two men in the driver and passenger seats of a vehicle stopped at a light were injured in the shooting.

The ESPN report acknowledged that several witnesses told police the shooter was a black man, but says a third passenger told police that a second subject -- "a 'Hawaiian' or 'Hispanic' male who had a large muscular build, stood about 6-foot-3 or 6-foot-4, weighed about 230 or 240 pounds and had a lot of tattoos," according to ESPN's Kelly Nagi -- was involved.

The Gainesville Police Department also released a statement denying that any other law enforcement agency had contacted it about the incident. It also said it has not released an incident report on the case since the investigation is still open.

Hernandez is being held on first-degree murder charges in the slaying of Odin Lloyd. He is also being investigated in connection with a 2012 double homicide in Boston.

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Report: Police probe Aaron Hernandez's possible role in 2007 shooting

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