Aaron Hernandez‘s lawyer claimed his client “clearly was gay” in Aaron Hernandez Uncovered, a TV special that premiered Saturday night on Oxygen.
Just to recap: The 27-year-old former Patriots star was serving a life sentence for murder when he was found dead in his prison cell in 2017. The cause of death was ruled a suicide. Afterwards, rumors quickly began circulating that Hernandez was either gay or bisexual and that he had had a jailhouse lover, a claim his family has denies.
Now, Hernandez’s lawyer, George Leontire, says he spoke with his client about being “clearly” gay shortly before the athlete committed suicide.
“[He] acknowledged it,” Leontire, who is openly gay, claims in the TV special. “Acknowledged the immense pain that it caused him.”
Leontire says the 27-year-old tight end struggled with his sexuality because he “came out of a culture that was so negative about gay people that he exhibited some self-hatred.”
Alyssa Anderson, Hernandez’s college girlfriend, also makes an appearance in the special. She says she suspected Hernandez was gay and once caught him texting men while they were dating.
“Back in college, there were text messages I saw on his phone when he came back from a trip [that were] from a male,” she reveals. “[They] didn’t have a name, didn’t really say too much, but it was a relationship with somebody and I questioned it.”
Anderson says Hernandez denied being gay while they were together, but he admitted to it later in letters they exchanged while he was in prison. “Please keep between this,” she claims he wrote. “But it’s not a shock, you caught me. LOL.”