Patriots had no inside knowledge of murder charge before cutting Aaron Hernandez

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When the Patriots cut Aaron Hernandez 90 minutes after he was arrested on live television Wednesday morning, many people assumed the team knew Hernandez was about to be charged with first-degree murder, as well as five other weapons charges.

Not so, according to a high-ranking Patriots executive, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the situation.

The source reiterated to the Globe late Friday that the Patriots’ brain trust, led by Robert Kraft and Bill Belichick, decided late last week to cut Hernandez if he were to be arrested in connection with the murder in any way. The source said the team’s leaders expected Hernandez to be arrested for obstruction of justice, and were “taken aback” when he was charged with murder later that afternoon.

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