First Pitch

Crime, Law and JusticeJustice SystemRoger ClemensBrian McNameeChicago Hotels

He’s defending his legacy, his reputation, his seven CY Young Awards and, perhaps, a shot for a spot in Baseball’s Hall of Fame.

Oh, and possibly, his freedom.

To Roger Clemens, it’s all on the line as Washington D.C. prosecutors and Houston Defense Attorney Rusty Hardin sent out their “first pitches” in the trial with opening statements. The 11-time All Star is charged with perjury, obstructing Congress and making false statements when he told congressional investigators in 2008, “under oath”, that he did not use steroids or human growth hormone.

Clemens stuck by his story despite his former teammate, Andy Petite, and former trainer, Brian McNamee, testifying three years ago that Clemens, did in fact, use steroids and HGH. Petite testified that he, himself, used HGH and that Clemens confessed to using it, as well. McNamee testified that he injected the pitcher with steroids for four seasons starting in 1998 and even kept some needles and cotton balls to prove his story.

Both Petite and McNamee, along with 40 of his other teammates, including trainers and managers, could be called to testify within the next few weeks.

Clemens, who retired three years ago, maintains he did not use steroids or HGH in any of the 24 seasons he pitched. Court officials say the trial could last as long as six weeks. If convicted, Clemens is facing up to 30 years in prison and a 1.5 million dollar fine. Assistant U.S Attorney Steven Durham told jurors “It’s all about restoring faith in America’s pastime”.

And now, that seems to be up to the jury of ten women and two men who declared that they knew little about baseball, or Roger Clemens.

 

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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