Social media users took to Twitter Wednesday with a mix of acceptance and consternation shortly after a jury found former NFL star Aaron Hernandez guilty of first-degree murder, sparking an emotional reaction from some of his supporters who were present in the courtroom, including his fiancée Shayanna Jenkins. Some Twitter users -- including former University of Florida teammate Brandon Spikes -- expressed sympathy for Hernandez, who faces life in prison without parole; others said he got what he deserved.
IM CONFUSED ABOUT THE JUSTICE SYSTEM THESE DAYS !!!
— BrandonSpikes51 (@BrandonSpikes51) April 15, 2015
Aaron Hernandez guilty ___
— King Kamms (@blake_kamms) April 15, 2015
Aaron Hernandez will spend the rest of his life in jail. When you want to be about that life these are the consequences.
— A.M. Murdock (@LiveAndAscend) April 15, 2015
It's a wrap for Aaron Hernandez___
— teen king ♚ (@JMILD300) April 15, 2015
Hernandez, 25, who played tight end for the New England Patriots, faced trial for the shooting death of semiprofessional football player Odin Lloyd in June 2013. Lloyd was dating the sister of Hernandez’s fiancée, Jenkins. Lloyd’s body was discovered with six gunshot wounds in an abandoned industrial park near Hernandez’s Massachusetts home.
Hernandez’s trial has been going on for months, with prosecutors presenting more than 130 witnesses. The defense took just one day to present its witnesses. A jury began deliberating last Tuesday after the defense and prosecution presented their closing arguments.
Some social media users made light of the verdict.
Aaron Hernandez will still get out of jail before the Cowboys win another playoff game.
— Eagles Fan Problems (@EagleFanProbs) April 15, 2015
Aaron Hernandez must feel like an absolute piece of rotten dog crap right now. What a loser.
— Jen Royle (@Jen_Royle) April 15, 2015
Aaron Hernandez is the biggest idiot
— Gianna Daddario (@giannamarie713) April 15, 2015
Hernandez’ mother and fiancée hugged and cried in the courtroom Wednesday following the jury’s verdict announcement. Lloyd’s mother, Ursula Ward, also cried.