Odin Lloyd, who authorities allege was murdered by former New England Patriots player Aaron Hernandez, carved a reputation as a trophy-accumulating athlete with a mischievous streak, according to relatives.
Lloyd, 27, found ways to keep smiling outside the family home in Boston’s largest and most diverse neighborhood, Dorchester.
“He was always a class clown,” his sister, Olivia Thibou, told CNN affiliate WHDH. “Everyone knew him to always make jokes, to laugh.”
“Anybody who knows my brother would say that he’s just a funny guy,” she said. “He’s very respectful. He never really disrespected anybody.”
Hernandez has pleaded not guilty to a first-degree murder charge in Lloyd’s death.
Hernandez’s high-profile trial began in January, and the jury began its deliberations late Tuesday afternoon.
Prosecutors told the jury that Hernandez orchestrated and covered up the killing of Lloyd, a former friend.
Hernandez’s attorney, James Sultan, told jurors that Hernandez “witnessed” Lloyd’s killing, “committed by somebody he knew,” and that the former NFL player “really didn’t know what to do, so he put one foot in front of another” and moved on with his life.
Two other men who were drug dealers allegedly killed Lloyd, Sultan told the jury.
Lloyd as semi-pro football player
Lloyd, who was working for a landscaping firm, also played football for the Boston Bandits, the oldest semi-pro team in Boston and the winners of four championships in the New England Football League, the team’s website says.
The team’s Facebook page features several photos of Lloyd and lists him as an outside linebacker with jersey number 53.
Lloyd’s family home features his trophies in baseball and basketball as well as football. One trophy said “MVP,” most valuable player. They were all on display on the family’s front porch during news conferences when the family pressed investigators to find out who killed him.
Lloyd’s body was found riddled with gunshot wounds on June 17, 2013, in a secluded area of an industrial park near Hernandez’s house, authorities said. A jogger discovered the body.
Investigators later found five shell casings at the scene. Inside Lloyd’s pocket, authorities said, they found a wallet and keys to a car that Hernandez had rented.
Lloyd was dating the sister of Hernandez’s fiancée, Thibou told CNN. Her brother and Hernandez went to a Boston nightclub together a few days before his death, she said.