FALL RIVER — The fiancee of former New England Patriots player Aaron Hernandez did not know how many firearms were kept in the couple’s home and did not lie to a grand jury about what she knew about the killing of Odin L. Lloyd, her lawyer asserted during a hearing Friday.
Shayanna Jenkins’s lawyer asked a judge to dismiss a perjury charge against her client, saying prosecutors have no direct evidence that Jenkins lied while testifying before a grand jury investigating the death of Lloyd, a Dorchester resident who was dating her sister.
“There’s got to be more than circumstantial evidence,” defense lawyer Janice Bassil said. “It’s got to be more than guesswork and speculation.”
Prosecutors say Jenkins lied 29 times while answering 1,630 questions posed to her before a grand jury over two days in August 2013. Jenkins was charged with one count of perjury, to which she has pleaded not guilty. She is free on personal recognizance.
First Assistant Bristol District Attorney William M. McCauley said that Jenkins has lied to investigators from the start and that her false statements were apparent to grand jurors.
“The improbabilities, the internal inconsistencies, the gaps — there clearly was a basis that [grand jurors] could find that she was lying,” he said.
Hernandez and two others have been charged with killing Lloyd on June 17, 2013, and have pleaded not guilty. All are being held on bail. Lloyd’s body was found in an industrial park near Hernandez’s home in North Attleborough.
During a hearing in the Fall River division of Bristol Superior Court, Judge E. Susan Garsh heard arguments about three lies prosecutors accuse Jenkins of telling the grand jury.
They said she did not tell the truth about her communication with alleged coconspirator Ernest Wallace; about her knowledge of the number of guns kept in the home she shared with Hernandez; and about her statement that she did not remember where she had disposed of a box she got from the basement.
Bassil said Jenkins truthfully testified she only saw one handgun, which she ordered Hernandez to remove from their home. She also said prosecutors appeared to have based part of their perjury charge on grand jury testimony from “cleaning ladies.”
“The idea that Miss Jenkins is completely aware of all these guns in this house — there is no evidence of that,’’ Bassil said.
The women said they saw a gun in the pocket of a pair of pants belonging to Hernandez, in a sock drawer in Hernandez’s closet, and underneath a mattress in a guest room in the basement that Hernandez used as a “man cave,” Bassil said.
The women also said an object they believed to be a gun was covered by a blanket and stored in a downstairs closet, Bassil said. She said that there is no evidence that the women told Jenkins about the weapons.
Bassil also said one of the women considered Jenkins to be “snobby and lazy.”
She also submitted 34 images taken from video surveillance cameras inside the couple’s home showing Jenkins and Hernandez one night in June 2013 before Lloyd was killed.
Bassil said the images showed Hernandez trying to hide from Jenkins that he was holding what might have been a gun.
McCauley countered Hernandez was in fact holding a firearm and made no effort to hide it from Jenkins, but rather tried to conceal it from a babysitter.
“The hiding is because the babysitter is sitting on the couch,” he said. “When of course he sees the babysitter, now he begins to shield it from your view.”
Garsh took the defense request to throw out the perjury case under advisement.
Hernandez also faces charges in a double slaying in Boston in 2012 and pleaded not guilty.Laura Crimaldi can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. John R. Ellement can be reached at email@example.com.