Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Police: Hernandez in 2007 fight that Tebow tried to break up

Tim Tebow, right, and Aaron Hernandez were close when both were stars at Florida; Tebow hosted Hernandez during his UF visit.

Getty Images (2010)

Tim Tebow, right, and Aaron Hernandez were close when both were stars at Florida; Tebow hosted Hernandez during his UF visit.

BOSTON — As former Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez sits in a private cell, having been arrested in a man's shooting death last month, a portrait is emerging of a man whose life away from the field included brushes with violence dating to his freshman year at Florida.

That history includes a bar fight which, according to police records, then-Gator teammate Tim Tebow tried to defuse.

A sworn court complaint from Florida's Eighth Judicial Circuit details Hernandez's apparent involvement in a fight April 28, 2007, at a bar in Gainesville. The partly redacted document says Hernandez, then 17, punched a bouncer in the head over nonpayment of a bill.

USA Today reported that Florida might have helped Hernandez reach a settlement with the bouncer, who suffered a burst right ear drum, to keep Hernandez from facing charges.

Tebow, now a member of Patriots and at the time Florida's star quarterback, is listed as a witness on the report.

According to the Orlando Sentinel, the police report said a waitress The Swamp bar brought Hernandez two "alcoholic drinks," which he drank but refused to pay for. That was when Hernandez got into a fight with bouncer Michael Taphorn.

Hernandez left, and shortly thereafter when an officer could not find Hernandez, he interviewed Tebow and Shaun Young.

Tebow, then 19, said he saw the dispute and told police he urged Hernandez to leave peacefully and tried to make arrangements to pay the bill. Police then talked to Hernandez later that morning.

Details of a series of altercations and gun incidents linked to Hernandez, 23, have surfaced since he was arrested June 26 in connection with the shooting death of 27-year-old Odin Lloyd, a semipro football player who Hernandez knew. Hernandez has pleaded not guilty.

Hernandez also is being investigated in connection with a double homicide in Boston. The Boston Globe reported investigators suspect Lloyd might have been targeted because he had information about Hernandez's connection to the double shooting in Boston.

Two men died in the shooting in Boston's South End on July 15, 2012, and another was wounded. Witnesses reported seeing gunfire coming from a gray SUV with Rhode Island plates.

Police: Hernandez in 2007 fight that Tebow tried to break up 07/02/13 [Last modified: Tuesday, July 2, 2013 11:13pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. For starters: Rays lineup vs Orioles



  2. Alex Faedo, Florida advance to face LSU in College World Series finals


    OMAHA, Neb. — Alex Faedo pitched three-hit ball for 71/3 innings in a second straight strong performance against TCU, and Florida moved to the College World Series finals with a 3-0 win Saturday night.

    Florida’s Austin Langworthy scores on a single by Mike Rivera in the second inning during a 3-0 victory over TCU.
  3. Jones: Bucs need success to get national respect


    Tampa Bay Times columnist Tom Jones offers up his Two Cents on the world of sports.

    No respect

    Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Dirk Koetter walks the field during the second day of mandatory minicamp at One Buccaneer Place in Tampa, Fla., on Wednesday, June 14, 2017. LOREN ELLIOTT   |   Times
  4. Rays journal: Jumbo Diaz falters after getting within a strike of ending rally

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Saturday's game got away starting with a leadoff walk in the seventh inning by Rays LHP Jose Alvarado, who was brought in exclusively to face Baltimore's lefty-swinging Seth Smith.

    Rays reliever Jumbo Diaz wipes his face as he walks off the mound after the Orioles score four during the seventh inning to give them a 7-3 lead. Diaz was one strike away from working out of the jam before he allowed a two-run double and a two-run homer on back-to-back pitches.
  5. Rookie Jake Faria dissatisfied with performance in Rays' loss to Orioles

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — The rookie pitcher walked to his locker Saturday after tossing the fourth quality start in as many tries to begin his career. He held the potent Orioles bats to three runs and for six innings gave his team a chance to win.

    Orioles third baseman Manny Machado tags out the Rays’ Mallex Smith at third after a rundown in the first inning.