Aaron Hernandez, Odin Lloyd's Unlikely Friendship That Allegedly Led to Murder


"[Lloyd] would tell me [Hernandez] was a cool guy," Branch said. "I was going to a Patriots game and he started talking saying 'coach, you know I might see you there' and I'm like, 'you ain't going to the game. You're too cheap. If you there, you're going to be tailgating in the parking lot,' and then he said that he was going to the game with Mr. Hernandez."

Branch thinks football might have been the thing that brought the two men together.

"Football guys like to hang together and Odin is a student of the game, he can break down film. He knows the game," he said. "Some guys, even myself, was envious of him. Who doesn't want to hang out with an NFL player."

But police say that somehow this unequal relationship unraveled. On June 14, police say a dispute broke out when Hernandez and Lloyd were together at Rumor, a Boston nightclub. But Branch and Hodge said Lloyd didn't indicate to them that anything was wrong between the two footballers afterwards.

"He had said they went out Friday and they had a good time," Branch said. "He didn't present anything about an argument."

"I don't think he thought that there was anything wrong. I don't think he felt like it was a fight," Hodge said. "Oden was very happy."

Hodge said he was with Lloyd just hours before he was killed on June 17. The last time he saw his teammate, Hodge said, was when he and Lloyd parted ways that evening and Lloyd said he was headed home.

"He had a text from his manager that he had work the next day, so he had to make the decision to go home and he told me, 'alright I'm going to go home and get ready to go to work,'" Hodge said.

Bristol County prosecutors said Lloyd got into a car with Hernandez and another man named Ernest Wallace, 41, late that night, then Lloyd was shot and killed in an industrial park near Hernandez's million-dollar home in North Attleboro, Mass.

"I'm trying to figure why you're leaving your crib at 2:30 in the morning and what you were going to go handle." Hodge said. "What is so important that it couldn't-- I can't figure it out. I'm trying to figure it out."

Hernandez is being held without bail at the Bristol County House of Detention. A probable-cause hearing was scheduled for today, but an Attleboro District Court judge granted the prosecution's request to pospone the hearing until Aug. 22.

Wallace turned himself into police last month in connection with the murder. He pleaded not guilty in a Florida court to an "accessory" to murder charge and a felony weapons charge, and is being held without bail.

Court documents surrounding the Hernandez investigation were unsealed last month by district courts in Massachusetts and Florida. According to court documents obtained by ABC News, Carlos Ortiz, an alleged accomplice who prosecutors say was also with Hernandez during the shooting, implicated the NFL star as the man who shot the five rounds that killed Lloyd. Ortiz told police he was informed by the second alleged accomplice that "Mr. Hernandez admitted to shooting Mr. Lloyd."

The Ortiz statement is included in an eight-page affidavit that was filed in Florida because the second alleged accomplice, Wallace, was arrested near Fort Lauderdale, in Miramar, Fla., after Hernandez was charged with murder. A separate volume of court records were released by the Attleboro District Court, the jurisdiction where Lloyd was found dead.

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