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Former football player faces two wrongful death lawsuits

Known to football fans across the country, including those in Florida, as the tight end who made his mark playing football for the University of Florida and then in the NFL, Aaron Hernandez showed he could take his game to another level by holding his own against more seasoned opponents. As gifted as he was on the field, though, his off-the-field behavior led to criminal charges and now civil suits against him.

Two wrongful death lawsuits have been filed by the families of two victims Hernandez allegedly shot and killed. According to the identical $6 million lawsuits, the former NFL star maliciously and recklessly fired a firearm from his vehicle and into a car occupied by three men. The two men who died were 28 and 29 years old.

A Massachusetts State Police investigation determined the men died after an SUV pulled up next to their vehicle at a red light and someone opened fire. Video surveillance footage showed the victims had previously been at a nightclub attended by Hernandez that evening and that he owned an SUV from a promotional contract with a car dealership.

Hernandez's has also been accused of killing his friend and semipro football player Odin Lloyd. A separate lawsuit has also been filed in a Florida federal court by an associate of Hernandez, who claims he was shot by the NFL star.

In Florida like the rest of the country, wrongful death lawsuits can be filed on behalf of a victim; this is usually done by surviving family members of a victim. Besides seeking a measure of justice, the lawsuit can seek damages for pain and suffering and loss of companionship.

Source: Fox Sports, "Hernandez facing multiple wrongful death suits," Kevin Vaughan, Feb. 27, 2014

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