Aaron Hernandez Jurors Break Their Silence on Guilty Verdict
The jurors who found former football star Aaron Hernandez guilty of first-degree murder are now speaking out.
Read: Aaron Hernandez Found Guilty of Murder
The jury of five men and seven women say the trial and long hours of deliberation took an emotional toll on them.
One female juror said, "It's something we will all remember for the rest of our lives. It will always be a part of us."
They were asked, “Were there tears in the jury room?”
Collectively they said, “Yes! Yes!”
One male juror said, “It was our duty. Whether your serving your country or serving on a jury it was our duty and we did it."
They were asked, "Do you think you will all be able to sleep peacefully?"
One juror replied, "Oh, I am hoping."
Hernandez, who was earning $40 million playing for the New England Patriots, was found guilty of shooting his friend, Odin Lloyd five times near his home outside Boston.
As the verdict was pronounced, 25-year-old Aaron Hernandez didn't flinch, but behind him, his mother and his girlfriend, Shayanna, held on to each other and wept.
Hernandez turned to them and mouthed the words "be strong" and "it's ok."
The dead man's mother also wept and at her side was his girlfriend, Shaneah. Shayanna and Shaneah are actually sisters but they have not spoken to each other since the murder. Now, each has lost the man they loved.
Hernandez's girlfriend has a three-year-old child with him, and she was a key witness in the trial, during which a videotape was played showing her removing a box from the football star's home and throwing it in a dumpster. Prosecutors claim the murder weapon was inside.
Read: Volunteer Cop Who Shot Unarmed Man By Accident Turns Himself In
Hernandez showed zero emotion when the verdict was read but he looked at the jurors and mouthed the words "you're wrong."
The sentence for first-degree murder is mandatory.
The judge said, “A term of your natural life without the possibility of parole.”
Jeers greeted Hernandez as he was taken to prison in an armored truck.
Hernandez will serve that sentence in a prison just a mile from the stadium where he once played football for the Super Bowl winning Patriots.