Aaron Hernandez cousin in custody

Updated: August 9, 2013, 7:11 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

A cousin of Aaron Hernandez is being held in custody in Massachusetts after she refused to testify in front of a grand jury convened in the murder case against the former New England Patriot, the Hartford Courant reported.

Tanya Cummings-Singleton, 37, was considered in contempt of the grand jury she was subpoenaed to appear before, a source told the newspaper. A Suffolk County Sheriff's Department spokesman said Cummings-Singleton has been in custody since Aug. 1, but wouldn't say why.

The grand jury in Fall River, Mass., has been investigating Hernandez's role in the June 17 shooting death of Odin Lloyd. Hernandez, charged with first-degree murder, has a probable cause hearing scheduled for Aug. 22, unless the grand jury indicts him before that date.

Bristol District Attorney Sam Sutter's spokesman said Friday he couldn't comment on anything related to a closed grand jury proceeding.

Authorities believe Cummings-Singleton purchased a bus ticket for Ernest Wallace, who is charged with being an accessory after the fact. Carlos Ortiz, also being held in connection with the case, reportedly told police that he discussed the murder of Lloyd with Cummings-Singleton.

Cummings-Singleton lives at the Bristol, Conn., home owned by Hernandez's uncle. Police have searched the home multiple times since Wallace and Ortiz were arrested in the case. Two weeks ago, authorities ordered Cummings-Singleton's phone and credit cards seized.

Investigators also were attempting to interview Cummings-Singleton's husband, Thaddeus Singleton, before he was killed in a late June car crash in Farmington, Conn.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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