Former New England Patriots player Aaron Hernandez was back in a Boston courthouse on Tuesday for proceedings related to charges against him for a 2012 double murder in Boston’s South End.
The status hearing surrounded the request by Hernandez’s defense attorneys for what amounts to a gag order for all parties as a means to “safeguard against prejudicial pretrial publicity.”
The prosecution responded by calling that request “burdensome” and “unnecessary,” reported The Boston Globe.
The defense and the prosecution agreed on the judge’s tentative trial start date of May 28, 2015, and both sides are due back in court on Aug. 14, when Judge Jeffrey Locke is expected to make a ruling on the defense’s request for a gag order.
Hernandez’s lawyers told the court they have been mostly consumed with defending their client against his other murder case in Bristol County, where Hernandez has pleaded not guilty to killing Odin Lloyd in June of last year.
Last month, Hernandez was indicted by a grand jury on two charges of first-degree murder in the killings of Daniel Abreu and Safiro Furtado, who were shot to death on July 16, 2012 while stopped at a traffic light.
Prosecutors say one of the men accidentally bumped Hernandez inside a nightclub, spilling his drink. Hernandez is alleged to have driven around afterward until he found the men, pulling up next to their car at a red light before fatally shooting them and wounding a third.