When Aaron Hernandez walks into Souza-Baranowski Correctional Institution in Massachusetts, the reality of his life behind bars will not immediately set in. The realism and acceptance of the fact that you are not going home often takes time. If Aaron’s attorneys promised to appeal his conviction, he may be on his best behavior until the Massachusetts Appellate Court negates it.Then what?

The process of numbing the pain of incarceration may begin with Aaron wanting to pass time using drugs. As a prison consultant, I’d never advise anyone to travel that route whether you are serving one day or a life without the possibility of parole. Souza Baranowski Prison is a high tech Alcatraz although historically known for illegal drugs running as wild as Aaron did through NFL secondaries. His access to money will suit the prison narcotic movers and shakers extremely well in spite of the random drug testing among inmates.

If the media reports are true regarding Aaron Hernandez’s ties to Bristol Bloods street gangs, it may be difficult for him to survive in prison regardless of his physical stature. Throughout the United States, David’s slay Goliaths every day in High Security Prisons. Prison life is tough enough for a person who has the ability to remain drug and gang free. Eagerly joining a gang in addition to indulging in narcotics while inside prison is a recipe for disaster. Correctional officers, at some point, will make themselves available to smuggle drugs or contraband to Hernandez in return for some of the millions he will never spend. That’s if civil suits aren’t filed by the family of Odin Lloyd, Alex Bradley, a former friend he unsuccessfully tried to murder in addition to the murder victims he is waiting to stand trial for. Pending and future Civil Suits will snatch his remaining money from the 40 million dollar contract may stretch from Souza-Baranowski Prison, past Gillette Stadium, down I95 all the way to Florida.

Only time will tell if Aaron’s path of violence, alleged involvement with gangs and drug use will continue in prison. He has a girlfriend and daughter whose lives will go on. At some point he’ll realize that his life must go on as well. Will his decisions making in prison be indicative of what the media portrayed, the evidence proved or what his friends and former teammates have vehemently proclaimed? As a prison consultant, I promise you, he will have total control of his future choices inside of his new home The High Tech Alcatraz. Exercising those choices for his sake and those outside of prison who truly love him is another story.

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