Aaron Hernandez’s death has officially been ruled a suicide, according to a statement on Thursday from the Worcester County District Attorney’s Office.
Investigators found three handwritten notes near a Bible in Hernandez’s jail cell, according to the statement. TMZ reports they were suicide notes.
Hernandez, a former NFL tight end, was serving a life sentence for killing Odin Lloyd in 2013.
According to the statement, investigators said cardboard was jammed into the door in an attempt to “impede entry into the cell.”
“Chief Medical Examiner Dr. Henry N. Nields performed an autopsy on Mr. Hernandez on Wednesday and concluded today that the manner of death was suicide and the cause asphyxia by hanging,” the statement said.
On Wednesday, Cheryl Fiandaca of WBZ Boston reported that Hernandez had written “John 3:16” on his forehead before killing himself.
Shortly after news of Hernandez’s death broke, Brian Murphy, his former agent, tweeted that Hernandez “would never take his own life.”
Absolutely no chance he took his own life. Chico was not a saint, but my family and I loved him and he would never take his own life.
— Brian Murphy (@A1Murph) April 19, 2017
According to the statement, now that Hernandez’s death has been ruled a suicide, the medical examiner’s office will release his brain to the Boston University Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy Center for study, per his family’s wishes.