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Trials and Arbitration Homicide Perjury charge dropped against Shayanna Jenkins
FALL RIVER, Mass. Bristol native Shayanna Jenkins, the fiancee of who testified against him at his murder trial, was cleared of perjury charges Friday, exactly one month after the former Patriots tight end was convicted.
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“The Commonwealth has filed a motion to dismiss and the court will allow that order,” Bristol County Superior Court Judge E. Susan Garsh said at a brief hearing Friday morning. Jenkins was indicted for perjury in 2013, accused of lying to protect Hernandez when she appeared before the grand jury investigating the June 2013 slaying of Odin Lloyd.
“I’m feeling great,” Jenkins said outside of court after the hearing. “I’m happy to start my future with my daughter and move forward.”
Hernandez is the father of Jenkins’ 2 year old daughter. The Bristol, Conn., native was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole last month, the mandatory sentence for first degree murder in Massachusetts. His defense attorneys are fighting the conviction, but the process is a lengthy one with a slim success rate.
When asked if she and Hernandez were still together, Jenkins said, “ehh.” She laughed and twisted her diamond engagement ring.
Prosecutors say that Jenkins, whose sister was dating Lloyd, helped dispose of the murder weapon. They forced her to testify at trial under a grant of immunity from prosecution, which prevented her from asserting her Fifth Amendment right against self incrimination when she was asked about her actions the day after Lloyd’s body was found.
Bristol County Deputy District Attorney William McCauley accused her of being dishonest when she testified at trial that she did not know what was inside the box she took out of the house and could not remember where she drove to dispose of it.
But court filings reveal that Jenkins, although she had trouble remembering some key details about the days after the slaying, provided more information at trial than she did when she appeared before the grand jury. For example, she admitted that she took money out of an ATM the night Lloyd was found dead to give to Bristol resident Ernest Wallace, who is also charged with murder.
Prosecutors dropped charges against Jenkins “as a result of her more truthful testimony at trial,” said Gregg Miliote, the director of communications for the Bristol County District Attorney’s Office.
“We feel like she testified to relevant facts that helped the jury get to their verdict,” Miliote said.
In response to a question about whether Jenkins cooperated with the government, her defense attorney, Janice Bassil, said: “She did what she had to do under the law.”