Friend behind bars says Hernandez hinted he might kill himself

BOSTON (WPRI/AP) — A man who says he was friends with Aaron Hernandez while the two of them were serving time in prison is suggesting the former New England Patriots star hinted at his suicide weeks before he was found hanging by a bedsheet in his prison cell last week, on April 19.

Lawrence Army, Jr., an attorney for inmate Kyle Kennedy, said Wednesday that Hernandez told his client in early March he was thinking he was “going to hang it up.”

That remark came while Hernandez was on trial for 2012 shooting deaths of Safiro Furtado and Daniel Abreu in south Boston, and Kennedy reportedly didn’t take it seriously. On Friday, April 14, Hernandez was acquitted of the killings but continued serving his life sentence for the murder of Odin Lloyd.

In-Depth Coverage: Aaron Hernandez Headlines | Aaron Hernandez Timeline | Key Players in Hernandez Case | Gallery: Hernandez Case

The men had been serving time at the Souza-Baranowski maximum security prison in Shirley, Mass. Army told reporters the two inmates had been close; they’d requested to be cellmates back in September, but prison officials ended up denying the request.

Army said Kennedy was the last person to see Hernandez alive, and that one of three suicide notes Hernandez left in his cell before killing himself last week was addressed to him. He’s made a request for that note to be turned over to his client.

This 2015 booking photo released by the Northbridge, Mass., Police Department shows Kyle Kennedy, serving time at the Souza-Baranowski Correctional Center in Shirley, Mass. (Northbridge Police Department via AP)

“This is coming from his own knowledge of the relationship he and Aaron had shared, and it comes from somebody inside the jail who indicated to him that one of the letters was to him,” said Army.

He continued that parts of the letter “may be incoherent. My client believes that that might be because the letter was written in accordance with language typically used behind the walls of a jail.”

Hernandez’s lawyer, Jose Baez, vehemently denied Tuesday in a statement that any such note exists.

Army also said that Kennedy plans to personally address the nature of his relationship with Hernandez at a future date.

Darren Soens contributed reporting to this story.