Daytona Gator Nation reaction to verdict: Ex-New England Patriots TE Aaron Hernandez guilty of 1st-degree murder

 
Headline Surfer® / YouTube download / Here is raw video feed of former New England Patriots star tight end Aaron Hernandez in a Massachusetts courtroom Wednesday where a jury verdict of 'guilty' to first-degree murder was announced before he was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole for the July 2013 gunshot slaying of semi-pro football player Odin Lloyd, 28.
 

Aaron Hernandez snapshot / Headline Surfer®

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- Catching a glimpse of the live proceedings on an overhead-TV in his Gator Beach & Sports apparel store across from the Ocean Walk on A1A, Paul Politis wasn't surprised University of Florida and ex-New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez was found guilty of murder Wednesday in a Fall River, Mass. courtroom.

And with the 1st-degree murder conviction for the 2013 gunshot-slaying of semi-pro football player Odin Lloyd, Hernandez was subsequently sentenced to life without the possibility of parole.

To Gator Nation followers like Politis, a merchant fixture in Daytona since his college days at U of F and appreciably older than the 25-year-old Hernandez, the court action was not a surprise, though still no less disappointing. 

"What a complete waste of some serious talent," Politis told Headline Surfer® of Hernandez, a hulking figure on the gridiron in college and the pros "But that's what happens when you continue to live the thug life."

Daytona Beach Gator Beach & Sports merchnt Paul Politis / Headline Surfer®To Gator Nation followers like Politis, a beachside merchant fixture in Daytona since his college days at the University of Florida and appreciably older than the 25-year-old Hernandez, the court action was not a surprise, though still nonetheless disappointing.

 "What a complete waste of some serious talent," Politis told Headline Surfer® of Hernandez, a hulking figure on the gridiron in college and the pros. "But that's what happens when you continue to live the thug life."

Hernandez was a three-year star player for the University of Florida, culminating in the 2009 season with him becoming the first Gator tight end named as a first team All-American.

And Hernandez was the recipient of the John Mackey Award, given to the nation’s best college player at the position.

That was then. This is now.

On this Wednesday, news of the 25-year-old Hernandez's fate topped the Google news directory and media outlets across the nation. Hernandez stood stoically as the verdict was read aloud.

After a brief recess called by the judge to say goodbye to the jurors, the former NFL star player was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

FAST FACTS: Aaron Hernandez - gridiron star to convicted murderer

• Aaron Hernandez is selected in the fourth round of the 2010 NFL Draft by the New England Patriots out of the University of Florida, where he was a member of the BCS National Championship team and recognized as an All-American.
 • June 2013, Hernandez is released by the Patriots after his initial arrest.
 • Aug. 22, 2013, Hernandez is indicted by a grand jury for the murder of Odin Lloyd, a semi-pro football player, in July 2013.
 • May 15, 2014, Hernandez is indicted for the 2012 double homicide of Daniel de Abreu and Safiro Furtado, for which he has maintained his innocence.
 • April 15, 2015, Hernandez is found guilty of first-degree murder in the Lloyd case and is given a life sentence without parole.
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Short Bio

Henry Frederick is publisher of Headline Surfer®, the award-winning 24/7 internet news outlet covering the Daytona Beach-Sanford-Orlando metro area via HeadlineSurfer.com since 2008. A longtime cops & courts reporter focused on breaking news & investigative reporting, Frederick is among the Sunshine State's most prolific daily news reporters, having amassed close to a hundred award-winning byline stories nearly evenly split in print and digital platforms. Frederick earned his Master of Arts in New Media Journalism with academic honors from Full Sail University in Winter Park in February 2019. He was a metro reporter with the Daytona Beach News-Journal for nearly a decade and then served as a city editor for the Taunton Daily Gazette in Taunton, Mass, while maintaining a residence in Central Florida. Prior to moving to Florida, Frederick was a metro reporter for the Rockland Journal-News in West Nyack, NY, for seven years. Headline Surfer was named the Sunshine State's top internet news site by the Florida Press Club in 2018.