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Fiancee the focus in search for gun

Investigators in the Aaron Hernandez murder case searched a Bristol, Conn., storage unit rented in the name of his fiancee, Shayanna Jenkins, because they believed she made "overt attempts to hide evidence … and to hinder and mislead" the investigation, according to court documents released Friday.

Jenkins has not been charged in connection with the June 17 shooting death of Odin Lloyd, her sister's boyfriend. In the newly released documents, investigators cite surveillance video, text messages and an interview with the sister, Shaneah, to suggest Shayanna Jenkins might have had knowledge of what happened to the gun used in the shooting.

Hernandez, a former Patriots and Gators star tight end from Bristol, has been charged with first-degree murder.

According to the documents, he called Jenkins the day after Lloyd's body was found because he wanted to dispose of weapons in his house.

The records released Friday detail Shayanna Jenkins' actions on June 18, the day after Lloyd's body was found near Hernandez's Massachusetts home. That day, the Jenkins sisters and two of the girls' uncles — Azia Jenkins and Donnie Smith, both of Bristol — were at Hernandez's home at 22 Ronald C. Meyer Drive in North Attleborough.

According to the records, June 18 footage from the home shows Shayanna Jenkins leaving the basement of the house around 1:15 p.m., carrying a trash bag, which authorities say contains a heavy "rigid object," resembling a lock box or safe. She placed the trash bag in the trunk of a red Nissan Sentra. Surveillance footage showed her returning 35 minutes later and opening the trunk of the car, which no longer held the trash bag and "rigid object," the records show.

Carlos Ortiz, one of the suspects charged in connection with the case, has told police that shortly after the shooting, Hernandez stashed two guns in a box in the basement.

COOPER TUNES IT OUT: Eagles receiver Riley Cooper said he didn't notice the crowd reaction during Friday's preseason game against New England.

Cooper, in his first appearance at home since the video surfaced of him making a racial slur at a concert in June, made one catch, a 19-yarder from Michael Vick. The former Clearwater Central Catholic and Gators standout received more cheers than boos but said he was oblivious.

"I didn't pay attention," he said. "I know I had that one catch and people said it was a good reaction."

RAMS COACH CHASTISES KOSAR: Rams coach Jeff Fisher said he's lost respect for former quarterback Bernie Kosar, who was highly critical of Fisher's team while serving as radio color commentator for the Browns on Thursday during the teams' preseason opener.

Kosar, a former Browns and University of Miami standout, regularly criticized the Rams, specifically their receivers and backup quarterback Kellen Clemens.

"I'm just surprised that Bernie has such a lack of respect for players and this game," Fisher said. "To be honest with you, I lost a lot of respect for him.

"It's highly unlikely he knew anything about our football team but felt the need to make those comments."

One of Kosar's shots was directed at Clemens, after Browns play-by-play man Jim Donovan told a story about the Rams backup giving Pope Benedict XVI an autograph. Kosar said: "Bless me father for I have sinned. I have to watch him the whole fourth quarter."

BLACKMON TIFF: Jaguars coach Gus Bradley had receiver Justin Blackmon and defensive end Jason Babin in his office hours after the two got into it Friday on the sideline during the team's preseason opener.

Bradley was pleased with what he heard, too.

"I'm not going to say that there was (nothing) between Justin and Jason Babin, but it was more like, 'Just back up when Gus is telling you to back up,' " Bradley said. "It's one of those things, and it probably appeared bigger. … But it was a lot smaller than what I initially thought."

BLOUNT IMPRESSIVE: Former Bucs running back LeGarrette Blount had 101 yards rushing on 11 carries in his first game for the Patriots on Friday against the Eagles, including a 51-yard touchdown run in which he reversed direction twice.

Saturday's GAME: Eli Manning hit Victor Cruz for a 57-yard touchdown pass, and the Giants beat the host Steelers 18-13 in the preseason opener for both teams. The Giants sat several regulars due to injury, including defensive stars Justin Tuck and former USF standout Jason Pierre-Paul.

BENGALS: Receiver Andrew Hawkins will wear a cast for 10 days to try to heal his sprained left ankle, making it doubtful he'll be ready for the season opener. Coach Marvin Lewis said Hawkins will be evaluated again when the cast is removed and the club will have a better idea how long he'll be sidelined.

CHARGERS: Rookie linebacker Manti Te'o will sit out this week with a sprained right foot and miss Thursday's game at Chicago. Te'o wore a walking boot while watching practice.

DOLPHINS: Former Gators kicker Caleb Sturgis celebrated his 24th birthday Friday in memorable fashion, converting a 58-yard field goal in a 27-3 win at Jacksonville. His previous long was a 56-yarder for Florida against Georgia, also in Jacksonville. Sturgis, a fifth-round draft pick in April, is battling veteran Dan Carpenter for the kicking job.

REDSKINS: Receiver Donte Stallworth is expected to miss the next preseason game with a sore left hamstring.

Fiancee the focus in search for gun 08/10/13 [Last modified: Saturday, August 10, 2013 11:50pm]
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