Apr 12, 2017; Boston, MA, USA; Former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez sits at the defense table during jury deliberations in his double murder trial of at Suffolk Superior Court . Hernandez is charged in the July 2012 killings of Daniel de Abreu and Safiro Furtado who he encountered in a Boston nightclub. The former NFL football player already is serving a life sentence in the 2013 killing of semi-professional football player Odin Lloyd. Mandatory Credit: Pool photo by Keith Bedford/The Boston Globe

Former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez hangs himself in his prison cell.

Former New England Patriots star Aaron Hernandez apparently committed suicide on Wednesday in his prison cell by hanging himself.

Hernandez, 27, was serving a life sentence without parole for killing Odin L. Lloyd in 2013. Guards found Hernandez hanging from a bedsheet attached to the window bars in his cell around 3:05 am, according to Mark Arsenault and John R. Ellement of the Boston Globe. The state Department of Correction said that the former NFL star tried to block the door to prevent officers from entering.

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The former Patriot was taken to UMass Memorial-Health Alliance Hospital and pronounced dead at 4:07 a.m. ET. An investigation into the former Patriots ‘death will be overseen by Worcester District Attorney Joseph D. Early Jr.’s office. Hernandez’s lead defense attorney Jose Baez said his office will conduct its own investigation.

“There were no conversations or correspondence from Aaron to his family or legal team that would have indicated anything like this was possible. Aaron was looking forward to an opportunity for a second chance to prove his innocence,” Baez said in a statement. Those who love and care about him are heartbroken and determined to find the truth surrounding his untimely death. We request that authorities conduct a transparent and thorough investigation.”

The former Patriot was the 27th recorded suicide in Massachusetts state prisons since 2010 and the second one this year, according to state records. On Friday Hernandez was acquitted in the shootings of Daniel de Abreu and Safiro Furtado. The jury found him not guilty of first-degree murder but convicted him of unlawful possession of a gun, according to ESPN. He was sentenced to an additional four to five years in prison, separate from his life sentence.

Hernandez played for the Patriots from 2010 to 2012 and he helped them reach the Super Bowl in his second year. The team released him in 2013 after he was arrested for killing Lloyd.

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