Aaron Hernandez
Former NFL player Aaron Hernandez looked at the prosecutor during his murder trial at the Bristol County Superior Court in Fall River, Massachusetts, March 3, 2015. Reuters

Former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez, 27, was found dead in his prison cell at the Souza-Baranowski Correctional Center in Shirley, Massachusetts, early Wednesday morning. According to authorities, Hernandez, who was serving a life sentence for the murder of Odin Lloyd, reportedly used a bed sheet to hang himself from the window of his cell in a general population housing unit.

While the Massachusetts State Police are investigating the athlete's death, attorney Jose Baez, who represented Hernandez during a recent double-murder trial, said that foul play should not be overlooked as a possible cause of Hernandez's death. Baez has launched an investigation on behalf of the Hernandez family, as they "are not buying the suicide story," according to TMZ.

In a statement, Beaz confirmed an investigation was underway. "The family and legal team is shocked and surprised at the news of Aaron's death," Baez said. "There were no conversations or correspondence from Aaron to his family or legal team that would have indicated anything like this was possible."

Hernandez was acquitted Friday in a double murder that occurred in 2012. He was found not guilty on seven of eight charges by a jury and sentenced to four to five years for unlawful possession of a gun.

Read: What Is Aaron Hernandez Cause Of Death? Former NFL Star Found Hanging From Cell Window

Speaking with ESPN for a piece published Tuesday afternoon, Baez said he was looking to appeal Hernandez’s conviction for the murder of Lloyd. "I think there are plenty of flaws in that conviction," Baez told ESPN. "If they are exposed properly, [Hernandez] certainly can and should get a new trial." Baez had described his client as "one step closer to being reunited with his family."

Baez has worked several high-profile cases before representing Hernandez. He represented Casey Anthony, the Florida woman acquitted in 2011 of the murder of her daughter, Caylee. A 2016 affidavit revealed that Anthony's former private investigator, Dominic Casey, had alleged that Baez and Anthony had a sexual relationship, a claim Baez denied.

Baez also represented Chris Serino, a lead detective in the case of Trayvon Martin’s death.