Jun
18

Clemens acquitted on all perjury counts

By

After two attempts at a trial and eight weeks of testimony, a federal jury needed just 11 hours to decide that two-time Yankee pitcher was not guilty on all counts of perjury. Clemens had been under prosecution for lying to Congress in 2008 when he claimed he never took steroids or HGH injections during his playing days. The acquittal, a nice victory for Clemens and his lawyers, was hardly surprising concerning the reports from the courtroom.

Clemens, whose name will appear on the Hall of Fame ballot for the first time later this year, could have faced up to 10 years in prison for perjuring himself. Instead, the D.C. jury found that none of Clemens’ 13 statements under the microscope were untrue beyond a reasonable doubt. It seems likely that this is a case in which the difference between innocent and not guilty is a big one, and it ends a chapter of poor decision-making by government prosecutors.

Categories : Asides, News
  • Peter R

    No HoF for him though i think……

  • JB in Manhattan

    He should be tested for perjury enhancing drugs.

    • Rainbow Connection (futurely Dummies Playing With Balls and/or RI$P FTW)

      wouldnt he have been hypothetically taking drugs that make him LESS likely for perjury? why would he take perjury enhancers?

  • RocketMan86

    Good News for the Rocket. This poor man was unfairly crucified by the bigoted anti-Yankee media and justice was served.

    Not in the sense on whether he actually did PED’s of some sort or not. We all can guess the truth on that particular issue. The justice I refer to in my post is that of this meaningless lynch mob over an issue where the vast majority of steroid users will never face any punishment or criticism.

    The fact is no one bears the moral superiority in the baseball community as all involve deserve scorn(the Players Union, the owners and of course Bud). And never should it be put squarly upon one individual like it was for that stinging moment after the dubious Mitchell Report was released. Roger and Andy were obviously singled out in an investigation that was as lame and incompetent as the man overseeing it. As we all know, Mr. George Mitchell was not intelligent, or honest, enough to investigate his OWN former ball club in Beantown. This completely invalidates his integrity and anti-Yankee biased report.

    In conclusion, Clemens has earned some praise for not allowing a bunch of scumbags to completely destroy him because he knew the scrutinize was unfair. The man work regiment truly save his career too much, plus ya add in his ego, made him too proud to see the truth. But perhaps when a mainly decent and genuine sportsman like Clemens is challenged in an all or nothing charge of having your entire career being slimed- I don’t blame him. Plus, like every big player of this past era knows, there are too many fellow big time players who are just as dirty and will never get caught. Its hard to have honesty or respect for a rule no one ever took seriously until it was too late. I feel bad for Roger, like many a tarnished legend, the PED’s were probably were just for recovery purpose and not truly for enhancing his skills.

    Naive? Probably. Still, looking back at this tainted era, I can’t find a way to vilify any single MLB player when I know there too so many equally dirty player who will never face any scorn. Plus, these guilty ball players were all seduced or coerced into implementing some sort of PED’s into their protocol because of the culture that stimulated it so well.

    Hope we all can find some forgiveness for Roger… he deserves some love and respect for all the great baseball he gave us in particular and hopefully someday he gets his day to shine in Cooperstown.

    • Ted Nelson

      He lied to Congress, and he’s the victim… how does that work exactly?

      • Preston

        Because lots of people lied to congress. But Clemens and Bonds are the sexy names. The evidence presented at both of these trials was a joke. These prosecutors just wanted to make a name for themselves and failed miserably.

      • RocketMan86

        Umm, Mr. Nelson, you do realize Eric Holder still has job, right? Clemens is a saint compared to most of the scumbag deceivers in Congress and this administration.

        At least Roger Clemens has contributed to society with his incredible pitching and personal charity. Guy doesn’t deserve to be put on trial like some real criminal. It’s not like he lied about some illegal gun shipment to violent drug cartels and got hundreds of folks killed or anything ;-)

      • David

        Actually a jury just said that didn’t lie to Congress.

        • radnom

          No, they said that there wasn’t proof beyond a reasonable doubt that he lied to Congress.

          Not the same thing.

          • Now Batting

            Ok? That still means the jury decided there wasn’t enough evidence to determine he lied to congress, which is in direct contrast to “he lied to congress”.

  • AP

    Personally, I am glad to see a not-guilty verdict. While I don’t necessarily think he’s innocent, the lack of any solid evidence is pretty staggering considering the prosecution decided to continue with the case. Guilty or not-guilty, his reputation is forever tarnished, though, which may be a harsher penalty than any fine or jail time he might have been given.

  • YooBoo

    Now, he can wear the Yankees Cap for the Hall of Fame celebration.

    Bonds, Rose and Clemens group for the 201x HOF vote ballot should be fun. lol.

  • Paul VuvuZuvella

    The dude must have run up $10-15 million in Legal Fees. Freedom didn’t come cheap.

    • Marcus

      My perspective, also.

    • Cris Pengiucci

      Fortunately for him, he earned enough in his career to afford the best lawyers. Not many of us, given a similar situation, would be that lucky.

      Glad he was acquitted. Maybe now our government can focus on important issues and leave baseball alone for a little while.

      • Ted Nelson

        That’s a red herring.

        • CP

          What do you mean? Are you trying to say that a federal government with roughly 2.5M employees can do more than one thing at a time?

        • The Fallen Phoenix

          Only kind of. There are finite limits to the government’s resources (money, time, effort), and I’m frankly appalled by how much was squandered dating back to the initial investigation which allowed Roger Clemens to potentially perjure himself to begin with.

          Though I’m indifferent to Clemens being acquitted, that he was in this position to begin with (both due to the aforementioned hearing, and this case going to trial) was rather irksome. If nothing else, there are bigger and badder fish for federal prosecutors to fry.

    • Guest

      Freedom…isn’t free…

      (I personally have heard it costs a buck o’ five.)

  • Darren

    “Of all the dramatic things!”

    “You just can’t predict juries, Suzzzyn.”

  • Rich in NJ

    A deep-pocketed defense makes it very tough to convict someone, particularly a public figure, but whatever, the verdict is what it is, and it may accurately reflect reality. IDK.

  • RI$P FTW

    How much money did our government waste on this?

    • CP

      That would depend on your definition of waste. For example, would they waste more money (because of the need for incarceration) if he were convicted, or less (because he’s found guilty)?

  • Zack D

    Good

  • Jd

    I am glad it’s over but never will feel the same way about Rocket. It’s sad any way that you slice it. He lied, the government went too far, and both are tarnished. Baseball is the winner in terms of a needed cleanup to the game, but so many heroes destroyed.

  • AP

    So when does MLB and Congress start going after all of the players in the 60′s and 70′s who were popping greenies in the clubhouse?

    • Gonzo

      Or just ONE football player.

      • TomH

        Absolutely right.

    • Pasta Stumbling Luis Sojo (formerly StanfordBen)

      Congress isn’t going after people for using steroids. They’re going after them for lying to Congress, which is something that should be punished (though maybe not at this cost).

      And do you really think MLB has unfairly persecuted recent players? If anything they’ve protected them more than they should have.

      • Steve (different one)

        Didn’t Palmeiro lie to Congress too? Serious question, can’t remember the details.

      • KeithK

        I agree that it is important to punish those who lie under oath at a Congressional hearing. OTOH there wasn’t much reason for Congress to get involved in this issue. The alleged lie would not have caused any significant harm to the US or it’s government. As such it seems like a total waste of time and government effort to have prosecuted this case even if you believe that Clemens did lie about PEDs (which IMO remains very plausible).

        Likewise, the obstruction charges against Bonds were a waste of government resources (as is often the case in high profile obstruction cases). At least with Bonds I could console myself with the thought that he’s a $%*# (and in particular a $%*# who never played for my team).

  • RetroRob

    Mixed feelings. I do believe Clemens took PEDs and therefore was less than truthful before Congress, yet MLB, the media, and yes even us fans looked the other way for a couple of decades regarding PED usage. It became acceptable. My guess is that any given time more than 50% of the players were experimenting with PEDs. I’m not convinced PEDs helped all players equally, or had anywhere near the impact on the game some believe, but they were part of the game.

    As for Clemens, he’s one of the all-time great pitchers, and everything I heard about him says he was an incredibly hard worker and a great teammate, even if he would come across to the opposition as a type A jerk. McNamee, on the other hand, comes off as a pretty despicable character, coloring my perception of the whole case, as did the government witch hunt targeting specific players.

    Ultimately it came down to Clemens’ word against McNamee’s to set up the government’s case on if Roger lied, and that was always the weakness in this case, and why it was so questionable for the government to be wasting the time and money on a very questionable case. To send someone off to prison I’d have to be pretty damn sure he was guilty. I doubt I’d have voted guilty.

  • Brian Cashman is Watching

    Met him after the trial, shook his hand, and got a picture. Still feel a little giddy about meeting him. Is that okay?

    • RetroRob

      Yes.

  • OMG! Bagels!

    I don’t know if not guilty equals exonerated, but it should. While I’m sure he juiced, he still deserve to be in the HoF and it takes quite a bit of cojones to have fought this all the way and not plead out.

    The government’s case was crap.

  • Robinson Tilapia

    Of course, he hasn’t yet passed the court of Vinny from Piscataway, first time, long time.

  • Alibaba

    Clearly, an effort had to be made about the rampant PED use in MLB. But, I always felt that Congress wasted its time in getting involved. So did the prosecutors. Their times could have been used elsewhere.

    • Randi

      Its the members of congress who desire to get media attention… and this is why taxpayer dollars get wasted on show trials like Clemens and Bonds.