Inmates who commit suicide in prison would forfeit their right to an appeal, and their convictions would stay intact, according a bill proposed by a Massachusetts state representative.
He proposed his bill after Aaron Hernandez had his murder conviction vacated because he committed suicide while in jail. Under current Massachusetts law, convictions are generally vacated if an inmate can no longer take part in his or her appeal.
The legislator, Rep. Evandro Carvalho, a Democrat and former prosecutor, said he filed the bill after a plea from Ursula Ward, who lives in his district. Hernandez was originally found guilty for killing her son, Odin Lloyd, but with the sentenced vacated, his conviction has, in essence, been erased.
“I think it’s revictimizing those individuals even to just go through that,” Carvalho told the Boston Herald. “She (Ward) was distraught. The fact that she even had to sit through it, for me, it’s common sense” to change the law.
Hernandez, in jail on a life sentence for killing Lloyd, committed suicide in his cell just days after he was found innocent in a double murder in Boston.