Former New England Patriots star Aaron Hernandez hired Florida attorney Jose Baez to represent him in his upcoming trial for double murder case in Boston.
“I can now confirm that my firm has been retained to represent Mr. Aaron Hernandez in his upcoming trial,’’ Baez wrote in a statement, as quoted by the Boston Globe. “Mr. Hernandez strongly maintains his innocence, and I plan to establish that before a jury of his peers. I have fully committed myself to ensuring a fair and just trial for Mr. Hernandez.’’
He added, “To accomplish this, I have assembled the best legal team in the country to serve as co-counsel.”
Baez, who handled Casey Anthony’s case in which she was accused of killing her toddler daughter, will be joined by Ronald S. Sullivan Jr., a Harvard Law professor. Sullivan is also renowned for establishing the Conviction Review Unit in the Brooklyn district attorney’s office. The unit allows the prosecutors to identify the wrongful convictions instead of leaving it to the defense lawyers to take the first step.
Baez said he realized that after being accused of three homicides, Hernandez, 26, has become the subject of much speculations. But he urged the public to keep an open mind.
“We understand that numerous reports of our client’s alleged activity have been published, but we ask the public to afford Mr. Hernandez the presumption of innocence and let the facts unfold in a court of law,’’ Baez said.
According to Baez, he also included top defense trial lawyer Alex Spiro and forensic expert Linda Kenney Baden in his team, CNN reported.
According to the prosecutors, Hernandez, who was already convicted of a murder in Massachusetts in 2015, shot dead two people outside a nightclub in Boston in 2012. One of the men allegedly caused the New England Patriots star’s drink to spill. Hernandez was also accused of killing a witness to the shooting, but he pleaded not guilty to it in 2015.