FALL RIVER — Prosecution witnesses in the murder trial of former New England Patriots star Aaron Hernandez on Thursday detailed drug evidence and clothing that the government contends will place the athlete at the crime scene.
State Police Trooper Zachary Johnson said investigators searched Hernandez’s home in North Attleborough on June 22, 2013, and were seeking “evidence that could link Mr. Hernandez to the crime.”
A teenage jogger found the bullet-riddled body of the victim, Odin L. Lloyd, 27, of Dorchester, five days earlier in an industrial park near the house. Hernandez, 25, has pleaded not guilty to murder and weapons charges in Lloyd’s death.
Among the items seized from Hernandez’s home, Johnson said, were four pairs of size 13 Nike sneakers from the master bedroom closet, and a digital scale and pink dish that were in a closet safe. Timothy Woods, a State Police drug analyst, later testified that the dish contained marijuana residue.
Prosecutors have said that Hernandez left footprints at the crime scene, and that his DNA was found on a marijuana cigarette near Lloyd’s body. Woods said Thursday that he tested that cigarette, which contained marijuana, and that he knew that a separate DNA analysis would be conducted. He did not testify about the DNA review.
For weeks, the defense has aggressively cross-examined police officials and other witnesses in an effort to show that many footprints at the crime scene were ignored or poorly documented, and that evidence sent for DNA testing, including a shell casing and chewing gum linked to Hernandez, was compromised.
On Thursday, defense attorney Charles Rankin repeatedly asked Johnson if there were other shoes in the home that police did not seize. Johnson said he only recalled seeing the four pairs of Nike sneakers that were recovered.
Also Thursday, Prosecutor William McCauley held up a white, long-sleeve hooded shirt for the jury that Johnson identified as another item that police had seized.
The shirt is similar to the one that Hernandez was seen wearing on video footage from his home surveillance system soon after the murder. Prosecutors say the same footage also showed Hernandez holding a gun. Investigators have not recovered the murder weapon.
On Friday, prosecutors hope to call Dorothy Stout, a private video analyst, to testify about glitches in Hernandez’s home surveillance system that can affect the time stamp and quality of the images. Stout took the stand Thursday out of the jury’s presence and attributed the problems to network congestion in Hernandez’s 11 home cameras.
Defense lawyers objected to having Stout testify for the jury, arguing that she has insufficient experience working with systems similar to the one in Hernandez’s home. Prosecutors said she is well-qualified to render an expert opinion. Judge E. Susan Garsh did not immediately rule on whether Stout will be allowed to testify.