Friday July 25th, 2014

A judge rejected a motion by lawyers for former New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez to dismiss charges stemming from the murder of Odin Lloyd, reports the Associated Press.

Hernandez's lawyers said that prosecutors had not shown any evidence or probable cause to warrant a murder charge. The judge rejected that argument, saying that probable cause can be established by circumstantial evidence and that the state doesn't need to prove there was a motive in the killing to get a conviction for murder.

More: Cousin of Hernandez to plead guilty to criminal contempt 

GALLERY: ATHLETES IN HANDCUFFS

Lloyd, a 27-year-old semi-pro football player who was dating the sister of Hernandez's fiancee, was found dead on June 17, 2013, less than a mile from Hernandez’s home. Hernandez's trial for the alleged murder of Lloyd is scheduled to begin Jan. 9.

Hernandez is also separately charged with killing two men in South Boston in July 2012. Prosecutors in that case said Hernandez followed the two victims after one of them spilled his drink on Hernandez at a club. 

Hernandez, 24, is in jail, held without bail, and has pleaded not guilty to all charges. 

More: Belichick, Bob Kraft interviewed by Hernandez investigators

- Scooby Axson

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