BOSTON – The family of Odin Lloyd will continue to pursue its wrongful death lawsuit against Aaron Hernandez despite the convicted murderer’s alleged suicide in a Massachusetts prison Wednesday morning.
Douglas Sheff, a civil attorney representing Lloyd’s family, maintained that he was in contact with Lloyd’s mother, Ursula Ward, after news of Hernandez’s death broke Wednesday.
Ward filed the lawsuit in 2013 after her son was found shot to death in North Attleborough, Mass. Hernandez, a former New England Patriot, was charged with killing Lloyd, and a Bristol County jury convicted Hernandez of first-degree murder in 2015. Lloyd was a landscaper living in Dorchester when he was killed. He was 27.
Hernandez’s appeal of the conviction was not heard before his death, and an archaic law in Massachusetts may be a hurdle for Ward and Sheff to clear. The commonwealth’s Supreme Judicial Court did not confirm the conviction and thus all legal exercises were not exhausted.
Hernandez’s appellate attorney, John M. Thompson, is expected to seek a voiding of Hernandez’s conviction once he obtains a death certificate.
“We expect to proceed to the damages portion of the case,” Sheff said.
Last Friday, Hernandez, 27, was acquitted of a double homicide from 2012.