"Aaron Hernandez's advanced stage 3 of CTE is normally found in the median age of a 67-year-old man", Hernandez family attorney Jose Baez tells PEOPLE. The former New England Patriots player was serving a life sentence for the 2013 killing of semi-pro football player Odin Lloyd, the boyfriend of his fiancé's sister.
In a press conference to announce a lawsuit on behalf of National Football League tight end Aaron Hernandez's daughter Avielle, attorney Jose Baez said one of the chief neuropathologists in the country examined Hernandez's brain.
Baez said the Hernandez family plans to sue the NFL. Other cases of notable football players who committed suicide, only to later be diagnosed with the disease, include Junior Seau, Jovan Belcher and Dave Duerson. As the Times noted, the disease has been found in more than 100 former N.F.L. players and is only detectable posthumously. The University's CTE Center, which is considered one of the most comprehensive research labs for the degenerative brain disease, released a statement saying Hernandez had Stage 3 CTE.
Hernandez committed suicide in his prison cell in April even though he had recently been found not guilty in a double-homicide case.
In a press conference at his law firm, Baez spoke in length about the study's findings, which were conducted by Boston University. Hernandez played a major role in Bill Belichick's offense in New England as one-half of a dynamic tight end duo that included Rob Gronkowski. Hernandez hanged himself in his MA prison cell. "I mean, I've been doing this for 20-odd years, nearly 30 years, and this brain was so different", she said. Shortly before his death, Hernandez was acquitted of murdering Daniel de Abreu and Safiro Furtado outside a Boston nightclub in July 2012.
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