Police have searched in and around Hernandez's sprawling home in North Attleborough, not far from where the Patriots practice. The Bristol County District Attorney has not released any information, other than saying the death of 27-year-old Odin Lloyd is being treated as a homicide.
A jogger found Lloyd's body in an industrial park Monday. His uncle Ishmael Andrew said Friday that Lloyd was dating the sister of Hernandez's girlfriend.
Family members have said Lloyd, a semi-pro football player, was never in trouble. Andrew said many things are puzzling about the case.
Hernandez attorney Michael Fee has acknowledged media reports about the state police search of his client's home but says he wouldn't have any comment on it.
Mark E. Sturdy, clerk magistrate of Attleboro District Court, said three search warrants had been issued in the investigation earlier in the week, but they have not yet been returned, meaning they're not public. He said no arrest warrants had been filed in state courts as of Friday morning.
Media have been camped out for several days at Hernandez's home, near the Rhode Island state line. A news helicopter followed along Thursday as Hernandez drove in a white SUV from his home to the stadium where the Patriots practice, then got out and went inside.
Patriots spokesman Stacey James said the team had no comment on why Hernandez was there. He said earlier that the team did not anticipate commenting publicly during the police investigation. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell is waiting for the legal process to take its course.
The Patriots drafted Hernandez out of Florida in 2010. Since then, he has combined with Rob Gronkowski to form one of the top tight end duos in the NFL. He missed 10 games last season with an ankle injury and had shoulder surgery in April but is expected to be ready for training camp. Last summer, the Patriots gave him a five-year contract worth $40 million.
Hernandez said after he was drafted that he had failed a drug test while with the Gators and had been upfront with NFL teams about the issue.
Late Wednesday, a 30-year-old man filed a lawsuit in South Florida claiming Hernandez shot him in the face after they argued at a strip club.
In his federal lawsuit seeking at least $100,000 in damages, Alexander Bradley claims he and Hernandez were with a group in February at Tootsie's club in Miami when the two got into an argument. Later, as they were driving to Palm Beach County, Bradley said Hernandez shot him with a handgun, causing him to lose his right eye. Fee, Hernandez's attorney, did not respond Thursday to an email seeking comment about the lawsuit.