Aaron Hernandez’s prison conditions have the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) worried that the former NFL tight end is not being treated as he should.
In a post on their blog, the civil rights organization argue that despite what the public might think about his case, he has not been convicted.
Hernandez has recently been placed under protective custody, in other words, solitary confinement to protect him from the rest of the population.
The ACLU refers to psychological studies done on inmates in similar situations, which conclude that, for a person, living in extreme isolation can have debilitating psychological effects.
The site adds that according to the studies, prisoners locked alone in solitary confinement may become depressed or begin hallucinating. Psychologists have said that the effects of prolonged solitary confinement can be irreversible and that the international community has begun to recognize solitary confinement as a form of torture.
In the case of Aaron Hernandez, the ACLU claims that he is living in a cell no bigger than a parking space and has little or no human contact for over 20 hours a day.
“Sadly, what’s happening to Hernandez is not a rarity in our criminal justice system. There are more than 80,000 prisoners in solitary confinement across the country. They remain isolated for weeks and sometimes years on end, often without the press attention Hernandez’s case has gotten.” the blog adds.
Hernandez could be waiting for up to a year for his trial to take place and has been denied bail on two separate occasions with the Judge citing the strength of the case against him and his flight risk.
The former New England Patriots player is accused of murdering Odin Lloyd, a semi-pro football player.
Do you agree with the ACLU’s concern over Aaron Hernandez’s prison conditions?
[Image via USA Today]