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A key witness in the ongoing double-murder trial of Aaron Hernandez took the stand Monday and described in gripping detail the night the one-time NFL star allegedly shot and killed two men outside a Boston nightclub in 2012.
Alexander Bradley, a former confidant to Hernandez, testified he was driving the Toyota 4Runner when, prosecutors say, Hernandez opened fire from the passenger window, killing Daniel de Abreu and Safiro Furtado on July 16, 2012. During testimony, Bradley identified Hernandez as the trigger man. Hernandez was angry over an encounter with the victims inside the nightclub, Bradley said, and ordered him to pull up next to the BMW sedan carrying de Abreu and Furtado at an intersection outside.
Bradley then went into detail about what happened during and after the killings, via an account from the Boston Globe:
Bradley testified that Hernandez “extended his body out the window,” braced himself, and twice said, “Yo.” Then, the witness said, Hernandez said “What’s up now, [expletive],” and began shooting.
“He fired five shots, five rounds,’’ Bradley said, who added he next heard “three or four clicks” as Hernandez kept pulling the trigger on what authorities allege was a six shot revolver.
“After the clicks, [Hernandez said] “C’mon let’s go!” Bradley recalled.
Bradley said he saw one or two men run away from the BMW as he and Hernandez drove away, and that they made their way onto the Massachusetts Turnpike. During the ride, Hernandez turned towards Bradley and asked him, “Did I see that?”
“I hit one in the head and one in the chest,” Hernandez allegedly told Bradley. “He was panicked. He was in a state of shock. It wasn’t a bragging tone.’’
Testifying against Hernandez under the promise of immunity, Bradley said Hernandez "felt people thought he was soft" and wanted to show otherwise by shooting de Abreu and Furtado. Inside the nightclub, Bradley said Hernandez orginally "got mad" when de Abreu, a stranger at the time, stumbled into Hernandez, spilling his drink.
de Abreu stood next to Hernandez “smirking," according to Bradley, further escalating the situation.
“He was upset about it," Bradley testified. "The individual with the braids (de Abreu), he smirked. He was kind of laughing. He knew what happened, and he smirked about it.’’
“I hate when people try me,” Bradley recalled Hernandez later saying as they exited the nightclub.
Hernandez has pleaded not guilty to the double murder charges and a witness intimidation charge for allegedly shooting Bradley in Florida in February 2013, an apparent attempt to keep him silent about the killings. The 27-year-old Hernandez already is serving a life sentence for the 2013 shooting death of Odin L. Lloyd.
Bradley is serving a prison sentence for an unrelated Connecticut nightclub shooting.
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