ESPN leases office space in Fall River for Hernandez trial - ABC6 - Providence, RI and New Bedford, MA News, Weather

ESPN leases office space in Fall River for Hernandez trial

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By: Alexandra Cowley

Fall River is looking to cash in big as the host for the high profile Aaron Hernandez murder trial. ESPN has already rented office space to be front and center for the duration of the trial and the city is hoping the sports network started a trend.

It's the case that grabbed headlines nationwide. Former Patriots star Aaron Hernandez charged with the murder of friend, Odin Lloyd.

Wherever Hernandez goes, the cameras and crowds follow. Kenneth Fiola with the city's office of economic development, believes those big crowds will bring big business.

"It's going to be big you know when Mr. Hernandez first came to the courthouse here you had throngs of people outside, I think that sort of notoriety is going to continue throughout the duration of the trial. So on a day to day basis, it's going to be reported internationally nationally it's going to be the talk of many dinner tables across the country and beyond,"said Fiola.

Fiola says the high profile trial will put Fall River on the map and it already has. ESPN has a 6 month lease for space in the Cherry and Webb building right across the street from the courthouse,and other media outlets may follow their lead. If that happens it could mean a huge boost for businesses.

Fiola said, "It's obvious right, so those businesses directly near or associated with the courthouse are going to benefit from the eating and dining experiences that they provide."

Café Arpeggio usually gets lawyers and jurors from the courthouse, but they haven't had a trial as big as Hernandez in a while.

Amanda Reis has worked at the Cafe for 7 years.

"It's going to bring us a lot of customers so it's going to be good for our business and were ready for it so just bring it on,"said Reis.

When the trial does start and the crowds settle in Fall River, the city will be ready.

"Listen we had Lizzie Borden and now Aaron Hernandez so I guess were the place for the trials," laughed Fiola.

Since ESPN signed a lease with the city, other media outlets have also shown interest in getting space. A date for the Hernandez trial has not been set.

(C) WLNE-TV 2013

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