Aaron Hernandez had his murder conviction vacated by a judge in Massachusetts on Tuesday, an expected move after the former New England Patriots tight end was found hanged in his prison cell last month.

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Judge Susan Garsh, a justice of the Superior Court in Bristol County, cited longstanding rules when it came to “abating the entire prosecution as if it never happened,” WBZ-TV reported. Under state law, convictions are typically vacated if a defendant dies while his or her case is under appeal.

Hernandez was convicted of the first-degree murder of Odin Lloyd in 2015.