Aaron Hernandez is an innocent man.
At least, that is, in the eyes of the law in Massachusetts.
Under a long-standing legal principle in the Bay State, Hernandez will have his first-degree murder conviction vacated because he died before the completion of the appeal process, which his lawyers initiated after he was convicted by a jury. The former star tight end for the New England Patriots, killed himself last week in prison while serving a life sentence for the 2013 slaying of semi-professional football player Odin Lloyd.
"The public definitely has a right to be surprised by this principle, but this is not surprising to anyone in the legal community in Massachusetts," Martin Healy, chief legal counsel at the Massachusetts Bar Association, told Fox News. "Right now the matter is pretty pro forma."