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Entries in Retrial (6)

Monday
Apr162012

Roger Clemens Jury Pool Asked About Steroids and Baseball

Brendan Smialowski/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- The judge in the retrial of seven-time Cy Young Award winner Roger Clemens Monday walked potential jurors through a list of 86 questions that they were required to respond to, ranging from their interest in sports and baseball to their thoughts about steroids and human growth hormone and what they think about Congress.

Several potential jurors said they believed performance-enhancing drugs were widely used in professional sports but that the issue would not prevent them from giving Clemens a fair trial.

Clemens was indicted in August 2010 on charges of obstruction of Congress, perjury and false statements as a result of testimony he gave to Congress regarding use of performance-enhancing drugs, specifically steroids and human growth hormone, or HGH.

Clemens is charged with making the false statements to congressional investigators in a deposition on Feb. 5, 2008. The perjury charges arose from his Feb. 13, 2008, testimony before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.

U.S. District Judge Reggie Walton declared a mistrial in the case in July after only two days of testimony when prosecutors included portions of Clemens’ February 2008 congressional testimony that referred to conversations former Yankee teammate Andy Pettitte had with his wife, Laura Pettitte, about the use of HGH.

Walton had barred the prosecutors from referring to Pettitte’s wife before the jury.

Several of the jurors questioned Monday said they were aware that there had been a mistrial in the case as a result of some trouble over evidence in the case.

Two potential jurors said they felt Congress has more important issues to deal with than steroids in baseball.

“There as lot more current problems that should be dealt with,” a potential male juror told Walton Monday. “I found it a little bit ridiculous Congress is doing this."

“The whole process is a little bit wasteful,” the man said.

A woman who works for a conservation group said that although she thought the congressional hearings were not that pertinent, everyone should testify truthfully.

The woman said she was a fan of baseball and had attended about 20 major league games. Several potential jurors said they didn’t like baseball or follow sports.

Clemens sat seated at a table with his defense lawyers dressed in a blue-gray suit and tie. When the pool of jurors was brought into a room where they all listened to Walton’s instructions, Clemens stood before them all when he was asked to identify himself.

Clemens’ defense lawyers are expected to try to create doubt about the government’s evidence. At the final pretrial motions hearing Friday, Clemens’ defense attorney Rusty Hardin said he had serious questions about chain of custody issues over gauze pads and syringes that Clemens’ former trainer Brian McNamee kept after allegedly injecting Clemens with human growth hormone.

As the new trial approaches, Hardin is preparing to question the credibility of McNamee, the government’s star witness in the case. He is likely to raise questions about how McNamee kept the syringes and gauze pads he allegedly used to inject Clemens before providing them to government investigators.  During opening statements in the first trial, Hardin told the jury that McNamee “manufactured” the evidence.

During the hearing on Friday Hardin said that in the time since the mistrial was declared last July the government has carried out an additional 50 other interviews. Hardin complained before Judge Walton that this was unfair and that the “new information was gained through their own misconduct.”

Clemens has stated that the injections he received from McNamee were vitamin b12 and lidocaine.  The trial is expected to last 6 weeks. Opening arguments could begin next week after the jury of 12 people and four alternates are selected.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Monday
Apr162012

Jury Selection Begins in Roger Clemens' Retrial

Brendan Smialowski/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Jury selection begins Monday in Washington, D.C., for the retrial of former major league pitcher Roger Clemens.

Clemens, a seven-time Cy Young Award winner, is on trial for allegedly lying to Congress about his use of performance enhancing drugs, specifically steroids and human growth hormone (HGH).

The former pitcher was indicted in August 2010 on charges of obstruction of Congress, perjury and false statements.  He is accused of making the false statements to congressional investigators in a Feb. 5, 2008 deposition.  The perjury charges, meanwhile, arose from his Feb. 13, 2008, testimony before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.

A mistrial was declared in the case last July after two days of testimony, when prosecutors included portions of Clemens’ February 2008 congressional testimony that referenced conversations former Yankee teammate Andy Pettitte had with his wife, Laura Pettitte, about the use of HGH.  The judge presiding over the trial had barred the prosecutors from referencing Pettitte’s wife before the jury.

During the retrial, prosecutors are expected to present physical evidence saved by Clemens' former trainer, Brian McNamee.  The jury will be shown syringes and bandages -- items McNamee claims he used to inject Clemens with performance enhancing drugs.

Clemens and his attorneys insist he did not lie under oath.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Friday
Apr132012

Opening Day in Roger Clemens Retrial Slated for Monday

Brendan Smialowski/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- The retrial for seven-time Cy Young Award winner Roger Clemens begins Monday with jury selection as new questions emerge about key evidence prosecutors intend to introduce at trial.

Clemens defense attorney Rusty Hardin said Friday at the final pretrial-motions hearing that he had serious questions about chain-of-custody issues over gauze pads and syringes that Clemens’ former trainer, Brian McNamee, kept after allegedly injecting Clemens with human growth hormone.

Clemens was indicted in August 2010 on charges of obstruction of Congress, perjury and false statements as a result of testimony he gave to Congress regarding use of performance enhancing drugs, specifically steroids and human growth hormone, or HGH. Clemens is charged with making the false statements to congressional investigators in a Feb. 5, 2008, deposition. The perjury charges arose from his Feb. 13, 2008, testimony before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.

District Judge Reggie Walton declared a mistrial in the case in July after two days of testimony when prosecutors included portions of Clemens’ February 2008 congressional testimony that referenced conversations former Yankee teammate Andy Pettitte had with his wife, Laura Pettitte, about the use of HGH. Walton had barred the prosecutors from referencing Pettitte’s wife before the jury.

As the new trial approaches, Hardin is preparing to question the credibility of McNamee, the former Yankee trainer and the government’s star witness in the case. Clemens’ defense team is likely to raise questions about how McNamee kept the syringes and gauze pads he allegedly used to inject Clemens before providing them to government investigators.  During opening statements in the first trial, Hardin told the jury that McNamee “manufactured” the evidence.

At the hearing Friday, Hardin objected to a request by the prosecution to file a sealed secret document that would not be publicly available until later in the trial. The Justice Department prosecutors said they did not want the information to come out close to jury selection and that it would be released later.

“What the government has done, is two weeks before the trial listed eight things … that should not be in public,” Hardin said. “This can be dealt with in jury selection."

“They are seeking to protect their key witness.”

Hardin and Clemens’ other defense lawyer, Michael Attanasio, alluded during the hearing to the information’s concerning an alleged sexual assault in October 2001 in which McNamee was involved. That case was still being resolved in a Florida court.

In an effort to bolster their case, two additional prosecutors from the Justice Department have joined the original three prosecutors who previously tried the case. Pettitte, who has returned to baseball this year after retiring, is expected to be a key prosecution witness.  He is expected to testify about his use of HGH in 2002 and 2004 and testify that Clemens told him he used HGH.

Hardin said at Friday’s hearing that the government has carried out an additional 50 other interviews since the July mistrial. He complained to Judge Walton of an unfair advantage and that the “new information was gained through their own misconduct.”

Walton told Hardin that the additional time was requested by the defense and that it was allowed equal time to prepare a defense.

Clemens has stated that the injections he received from McNamee were vitamin B12 and lidocaine.  The trial is expected to last six weeks. Opening arguments could begin next week after the jury of 12 people and four alternates is selected.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Feb082012

Retrial Begins for NC Man Accused of Killing Pregnant Wife

Brand X Pictures/Thinkstock(RALEIGH, N.C.) -- The second trial of a man who is accused of beating his pregnant wife to death in their North Carolina home began this week with testimony from the dead woman's sister that the defendant was unfaithful with multiple mistresses.

Jason Young, 37, is on trial for first-degree murder a second time, after a jury was deadlocked while deliberating last July. Michelle Young was 29 years old and five months pregnant with their second child when she was found face-down in a pool of blood by her sister, Meredith Fisher, in 2006.

Jason Young was released from jail in July 2011 after posting a $900,000 bond but now could face life in prison without the possibility of parole if convicted.

Fisher went to the couple's house after receiving a voicemail from Jason Young asking her to do a favor and see if she could find an item in the house near the computer.

In emotional testimony, Fisher described finding her sister, who was a star employee at Progress Energy, beaten with her then 2-year-old daughter, Cassidy, nearby.

"That's the small of her back, that I touched her and felt that she was cold," Fisher recalled.

Fisher tried to encourage Cassidy, the only witness and now age 7, to speak on the 911 call: "Sweetie do you know what happened to mommy?  Did she fall?" Cassidy responded, "She's got boo-boos everywhere."

Young says that he was at a hotel on a business trip in Hillsville, Va., 160 miles from their home in Raleigh, the night that his wife died.

The prosecution argued that Young drove back from Hillsville that night to murder Michelle, and then tampered with the hotel's security equipment to cover his tracks.

Keith Hicks, a worker at the hotel, testified that he found an unplugged security camera and an open emergency exit door.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Friday
Sep022011

Judge Walton Will Allow Retrial for Roger Clemens

Brendan Smialowski/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Judge Reggie Walton has allowed a retrial in the case of Roger Clemens which he set to begin on April 16, 2012. Walton had previously declared a mistrial on July 14 after only two days of testimony, when prosecutors defied his order by introducing evidence that Walton had ruled could not be shown to the jury.

During arguments Friday Clemens’ defense attorney Michael Attanasio stated that the prosecutors willfully violated the judge’s order to force a mistrial alleging that they had to, “win at all costs” since they did not like the jury that had been seated and that they had insight into the defense strategy after opening statements had been made in the trial.

In making his ruling Judge Walton said, “I have nothing based on my past experience with counsel that this was their intent … I find it difficult to believe that Mr. [Steve] Durham intentionally violated an order,” Walton said about prosecutor Steve Durham.
 
“I don’t think on the record that we have here -- that there is a double jeopardy bar,” Walton ruled, referencing the 5th amendment of the Constitution.
 
Clemens lawyer argued before Judge Reggie Walton Friday that a retrial was not appropriate since the prosecutors now knew the defense strategy and they said future jury pools would be tainted.
 
Clemens defense attorney Michael Attanasio began his argument before Judge Reggie Walton by saying, “Something has gone wrong here … and that something is a win at all cost mentality.”

Clemens was indicted in August 2010 on charges of obstruction of Congress, perjury and false statements for testimony he gave to Congress in February 2008 regarding the use of performance enhancing drugs, specifically steroids and human growth hormone, or HGH.  Clemens’ former trainer, Brian McNamee, has acknowledged that he injected former teammate Andy Pettitte with HGH in 2002 and 2004 and both men were to be key witnesses for the prosecution against Clemens.
 
When he declared the mistrial in July, Judge Walton blasted the prosecutors after they showed the jury extended parts of Clemens congressional appearance on Feb. 13, 2008, which referenced conversations Andy Pettitte had with his wife Laura Pettitte about the use of HGH.  Before the trial Walton issued a ruling that statements that Mr. Pettitte made to his wife could not be admitted or shown to the jury.

At the end of the hearing Walton said he was very troubled by the events but that the double jeopardy standard had not been met with the record that had been presented to him. Walton set jury selection to begin on April 16, 2012.
 
It is expected the defense team will appeal, Clemens team nor the prosecutors commented when they departed the courthouse since there is a gag-order in place.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Thursday
May192011

Rod Blagojevich to Take the Stand Next Week in Retrial?

Tim Boyle/Getty Images(CHICAGO) -- Former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich is planning to take the stand in the retrial for corruption charges brought against him, a source tells ABC affiliate WLS in Chicago.

Blagojevich, who currently faces 20 counts, has maintained his innocence since his 2008 arrest.
 
Defense attorneys for Blagojevich told WLS that he has been prepping to take the stand, but that the decision to have him testify is not definite.

Court is in recess until Monday for jurors.  However, lawyers are expected to meet Friday with Judge James Zagel to discuss the defense's witness list, which may hint at defense plans for their arguments, scheduled to begin Monday.

After three weeks of arguments and witnesses, the prosecution rested its case Thursday.  

Defense attorney Sheldon Sorosky tells WLS their case could take up to three days to present.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







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