Roger Clemens Found Not Guilty

The second trial of Roger Clemens has come to an end, as a jury has found Clemens not guilty of perjury, false statements and obstruction of Congress. 

SI.com’s Michael McCann has published an excellent article on Clemens’ legal victory and the government’s pursuit of baseball players for performance enhancing drugs:

By losing, the Justice Department will attract only more criticism about its decision to prosecute Clemens — a decision that had already drawn rebuke as wasteful and unlikely to prevail. When coupled with the Justice Department losing on the three perjury counts in the Barry Bonds trial in April 2011 (Bonds was convicted on one count of obstruction of justice and sentenced to house arrest), the government’s steroids-related cases against arguably the best hitter and best pitcher in baseball over the past 30 years can only be viewed as failures. Do not expect any more perjury charges of baseball players.

Click here to read the article in its entirety.  Also, Les Carpenter of Yahoo! Sports has an interesting take on the verdict and the government’s decision to bring the case to trial on two occasions:

Nothing that happened in Washington, D.C., on Monday will change the view of Roger Clemens. The majority of baseball fans will continue to believe he lied to Congress when he said he didn’t use steroids. The verdict in his trial was never about the truth.

Rather, it was about a case that never should have seen a federal courthouse once, let alone the two times it did. And yet justice department lawyers pushed on and on for weeks, but all they ended up proving was they couldn’t take the obsession of a few spotlight-seeking politicians and turn it into a conviction.

 
Last summer, Connecticut Sports Law ran a poll, asking the question “is the Clemens trial a waste of resources?”  More than 57% percent of voters answered in the affirmative.  Now that two trials have been held (the first resulted in a mistrial) and Clemens was found not guilty, I wonder what the poll results would look like if it were held today?

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