The lawyer for a Massachusetts inmate alleged to be a "close friend" of convicted murderer and former New England Patriot Aaron Hernandez called upon a district attorney and lawyers for the former football star to release a copy of the enigmatic third suicide note he left behind.
Inmate Kyle Kennedy's lawyer, Larry Army Jr., said at a press conference on Wednesday that his client believed that the suicide note was left to him because of "the relationship that he and Aaron had shared, and someone inside of the jail that indicated to him" that one of the letters had been intended for him.
Army also said that Kennedy would reveal "the nature and extent" of the relationship between himself and Hernandez at a later date, later adding that Kennedy wanted it "to come from his mouth to the world."
But Army claimed that according to his client, Hernandez wanted to give Kennedy a $47,000 watch for his birthday. Kennedy said the former football player planned to make arrangements to give the custom watch, purchased in Vegas, to Kennedy when he was released or to get it to his family, Army said.
The former New England Patriots tight end was serving a life sentence for the 2013 fatal shooting of friend and semi-pro football player Odin Lloyd in 2013 when authorities say he committed suicide last week.
Authorities recovered three suicide notes and a Bible after they say Hernandez killed himself in his cell at the Souza-Baranowski Correctional Center. The first two letters were addressed to Hernandez' fiancée and the mother of his daughter, Shayanna Jenkins-Hernandez, and to his young daughter, officials have said.
But the nature of the third letter has remained unclear, with Kennedy's lawyer claiming it was intended for him and Hernandez' lawyer flatly denying it.
When asked by NBC News about who the third letter was addressed to, if anyone, a spokesperson for the Worcester County District Attorney's Office said on Monday, "the information I have is unclear."
The Daily Mail later reported that the man was a 22-year-old inmate named Kyle Kennedy.
Kennedy arrived at the prison in 2015 after an armed robbery conviction, NBC Boston reported. Army said his client could be released as early as February.
The lawyer who led Hernandez' defense, Jose Baez, adamantly denied these claims, saying in a statement, "Rumors of letters to a gay lover, in or out of prison, are false. These are malicious leaks used to tarnish someone who is dead."
Baez went after Kennedy by name, saying, "Accordingly, on behalf of the family of Aaron Hernandez, I am reaffirming, unequivocally, no such letter to Mr. Kennedy, or any other individual, in or out of prison, exists."
Army asked that both the district attorney and Hernandez' attorneys release a copy of the third letter to him and his client, so they could determine for themselves if it was meant for Kennedy. Army also responded to Baez' statement, saying that if he was so sure that the letter was not intended for Kennedy, then he should hand over a copy so they could make that determination as well.
Army has said that neither he nor his client has seen what was contained in the third letter.
The lawyer said Hernandez had written letters to members of Kennedy's family, including his father, and read a small portion of what he said was one of those letters.
"Mr. Kennedy, it's Aaron. I'm writing to you and Pure doesn't know. He's my brother and he always will be," Army read, using Kennedy's nickname.
He also said the two knew each other before Kennedy came to the correctional facility in 2015 "through correspondence." He would not give any further details.
In a statement released through the lawyer, Kennedy said he misses his friend.
"I miss my friend, Aaron Hernandez. I'd like to send my condolences to his fiancee, his mother and his daughter," he said.