Bristol County (Mass.) prosecutors say that Shayanna Jenkins, the girlfriend of imprisoned former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez, destroyed evidence that could have helped police link Hernandez to the murder of 27-year-old Odin Lloyd, according to Boston.com.
On Tuesday, Jenkins pleaded not guilty to charges of perjury tied to the murder trial of Hernandez.
Assistant District Attorney Patrick Bomberg said Jenkins was granted immunity but violated that grant by claiming memory lapses when testifying to the grand jury. The DA said that Hernandez requested that Jenkins remove a box from the his basement — the couple lived at Hernandez's North Attleboro residence together — and toss the box in a dumpster.
When asked about her actions one day after Lloyd’s murder at the grand jury hearing, Bomberg said Jenkins testified she had no memory of where she went or where she disposed of the box. The box is believed to have contained key evidence in the Hernandez, perhaps even the weapon that was used in the murder.
Hernandez has been charged with first-degree murder in the death of Lloyd, who was dating Jenkins' sister. The Patriots released Hernandez following his arrest.
Jenkins was arraigned in Fall River Superior Court and set free. She must return to court November 6 for a pre-trial hearing after being indicted on one count of perjury connected to her testimony to the Bristol County grand jury, which was hearing evidence in the Hernandez case.
Jenkins’s attorney said the indictment against her client was “overeaching” and described her relationship with the accused murder as “don’t ask, don’t tell.” Jenkins and Hernandez have a small child together.
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