Mom of Aaron Hernandez murder victim calls for change after conviction vacated

Mom of Aaron Hernandez murder victim calls for change after conviction vacated

BOSTON — The mother of Odin Lloyd testified on Beacon Hill on Tuesday afternoon to call for changes to state law.

Ursula Ward spoke out in support of a bill named after her son that would prevent a judge from vacating a conviction if an inmate commits suicide.

The bill would not be retroactive to change the outcome in Lloyd's case and would not affect Ward's pending wrongful death lawsuit against the Hernandez estate.

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"I thought, I know this bill will not change anything for my son, it will support families after me," said Ward. "It will offer me some peace."

The calls for change stem from the dropped murder conviction of Aaron Hernandez after his suicide in jail last April.

Hernandez was convicted of killing Odin Lloyd in 2013.

He was sentenced to life in prison but was in the process of appealing that conviction when he was found hanged in his jail cell.

"My justice is, if you give up your own life for your own appeal, the family should not suffer anymore," said Ward. "This is not a revolutionary change in our law, most states have already taken this step and if we could just take this one baby step, we're on our way to justice."

Under current law, a conviction is not final until all appeals have been considered. Since Hernandez killed himself, his murder conviction was vacated.

If the bill passes, any appeal would be thrown out if an inmate ends their own life.