Hernandez questioned 'very briefly' for 2007 shooting here

Published: Saturday, June 29, 2013 at 5:09 p.m.
Last Modified: Saturday, June 29, 2013 at 5:09 p.m.

Former University of Florida football star Aaron Hernandez is charged with one murder in Massachusetts and is being investigated in another shooting there.

And he is being sued in South Florida by a man who claims Hernandez shot him.

But authorities in Gainesville said they have no evidence that Hernandez was involved in a shooting in 2007 for which he and several other UF players were questioned.

“Hernandez’s name came up once in the report and he was questioned very briefly,” said Gainesville police officer Ben Tobias. “Anytime we have an incident like that, we investigate and follow any lead whatsoever. We got his name as being in the area of that club, so we questioned him.”

The shooting happened Sept. 30, 2007 in the 1200 block of W. University Avenue.

Corey T. Smith, now 33, and Justin E. Glass, now 24, were in a car stopped in westbound traffic when Smith, the passenger, was shot in the head. Glass was shot in the arm by a man police said walked up to the car and fired several shots from a handgun.

The men were able to drive themselves to a hospital.

Smith’s aunt, Stephanie Hines, told The Sun a year later that the men had been at The Venue nightclub downtown when tempers flared after someone snatched a chain necklace off another person.

A disturbance then occurred outside the club. Glass and another man in the car with Smith during the shooting were possibly involved in the disturbance, Hines said.

Police questioned former Florida player Reggie Nelson, who was then playing for the Jacksonville Jaguars, and several Gators who police did not identify at the time.

“My memory is that GPD was having a lot of trouble getting cooperation from the Pouncey twins (Mike and Maurkice) in terms of coming down and talking to them. Sooner or later they got their hands on the Pounceys,” said State Attorney Bill Cervone. “I never remember hearing Hernandez’s name, or Reggie Nelson. But if they got their hands on them and talked to them, they weren’t hot and bothered by them.”

No one was ever charged in the shooting and it remains an open case.

Maurkice Pouncey currently plays for the Pittsburgh Steelers and Mike Pouncey for the Miami Dolphins.

Hernandez played for UF from 2007 to 2009. He was drafted by the New England Patriots, who cut him following his murder arrest Wednesday in Massachusetts.

Killed was a friend of Hernandez, Odin Lloyd, 27. Two other suspects have also been arrested in connection with the case.

Hernandez also is being investigated regarding a 2012 drive-by shooting in Boston in which two people were killed.

Meanwhile, Hernandez is being sued by Alexander Bradley, 30, of Connecticut. Bradley alleges Hernandez shot him in the face in February in Riviera Beach after they had been at a strip club together.

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