A judge ruled on Tuesday that certain pieces of evidence cannot be used in Aaron Hernandez’s trial for the murder of Odin Lloyd, reported NECN.
During an Aug. 11 hearing, defense lawyers for Hernandez said the seizure of cellphones, electronic tablets, a video recorder, and a hard drive from Hernandez’s North Attleboro home was illegal.
Judge Susan Garsh, of Bristol County Superior Court, agreed.
The items were taken during a search of Hernandez’s home shortly before prosecutors indicted the former New England Patriots star for shooting and killing the Dorchester man in June 2013.
Citing questionable paperwork, Hernandez’s lawyers claimed that Massachusetts State Police did not follow the proper protocol to remove the items.
The ruling was a reversal for Judge Garsh, who had previously rejected a motion to suppress the video recorder and hard drive. But the fact that State Police failed to correctly itemize all of the seized electronic devices apparently couldn’t be ignored by Judge Garsh.
The Boston Globe reported that Judge Garsh said the evidence was inadmissable because an affadavit was not present during the search of Hernandez’s home.
“The Court attributes the omission to carelessness on the part of [State Police] and not to any loss of interest by law enforcement in seizing the items,” Garsh wrote.
The trial for that case is scheduled to start in early January, but the defense will continue arguing for a change of venue during a hearing set for Oct. 30.
Hernandez is also scheduled to stand trial for two charges of first-degree murder in the killings of Daniel Abreu and Safiro Furtado, who were shot on July 16, 2012 while stopped at a traffic light in Boston’s South End. That trial is tentatively set to begin May 28, 2015.