Aaron Hernandez’s Ex-Fiancée is Accused of Recklessly Misspending Money Intended for Their Young Daughter

Shayanna Jenkins-Hernandez is being accused of frivolously spending tens of thousands of dollars that were supposed to support her young daughter.

via: Boston.com

The fight started in September when Shayanna Jenkins-Hernandez said she couldn’t afford the $10,697 bill for her daughter’s dance lessons.

So the former fiancée of disgraced New England Patriots star Aaron Hernandez asked a court-appointed trustee to pay the bill from a trust fund that had been set up for their daughter, Avielle, after Hernandez committed suicide while in prison for murder in 2017.

But the trustee, attorney David Schwartz, said no. By his calculations, Jenkins-Hernandez already was receiving a separate source of funds outside the trust — $150,000 a year or more from Hernandez’s NFL pension and Social Security that was supposed to pay for the 10-year-old’s daily expenses. He couldn’t imagine why she needed more.

Then Schwartz reviewed how Jenkins-Hernandez had been spending the money: $36,858 on clothing, including maternity wear; $39,347 on home goods; $25,577 shopping online; $11,792 in “self care,” including gym fees, and visits to hair and nail salons.

“There is reason to question whether the expenditures were for Avielle’s benefit,” said attorney Robert O’Regan, who is representing Schwartz in the court dispute. “To be fair, this little girl should have a decent life with what her father left for her. No one would complain if there were reasonable expenses. We’re talking about over the top or otherwise unrelated expenses to Avielle.”

Now Schwartz and Jenkins-Hernandez are locked in a battle over who controls the money that remained after the death of Hernandez, who hanged himself in prison after being convicted of murdering Odin Lloyd, the boyfriend of Jenkins-Hernandez’s sister. Just a few days before his death, Hernandez had been acquitted of a separate double murder in the South End.

When Schwartz declined to pay Avielle’s dancing bill, Jenkins-Hernandez promptly asked a Bristol County probate judge to remove him as trustee, arguing he was potentially forcing the child to give up her favorite extracurricular activity. Jenkins-Hernandez, who gave birth to a second daughter by another man in 2018, insists she hasn’t improperly spent money and the money from the trust fund should be available when she needs it.

“Since Aaron’s death, my sole focus has been on raising and providing as stable a life for my children as possible,” wrote Jenkins-Hernandez in an e-mail to the Globe. “All monies I have spent have been with this singular focus in mind, and this will continue to be my focus going forward.”

Her lawyer, Stephen Withers, called the controversy “much ado about nothing. What Shayanna has done is focus on her children … Any allegation or insinuation that she’s spending money inappropriately or for any other purpose is absolutely false.”

But Schwartz said Jenkins-Hernandez appears to have broken the rules and he has asked that she be removed as Avielle’s conservator, a court-appointment that allowed her to set up the trust fund Schwartz now administers. If she loses that role, a new conservator would receive Hernandez’s pension and Social Security checks and decide how the money should be spent.

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