SAN FRANCISCO (CN) – Possible new evidence and a sick juror caused witness testimony in the Barry Bonds steroids trial to grind to a halt on Monday. Illston sent the jury home before they had even arrived in the courtroom after learning one juror had been stricken over the weekend with either kidney or gall stones.
Though federal prosecutors had expected to wrap up their case Monday after eight days of witness testimony, a tape surfaced over the weekend that could tilt the trial in the government’s favor. Bond’s orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Arthur Ting, rattled the governments case when he testified last week that he had never had any conversations with the former ballplayer’s childhood friend about Bonds’ alleged steroid use. Assistant U.S. Attorney Matthew Parrella said Monday that the prosecution now has an audio tape that would disprove Ting’s testimony.
Steve Hoskins said on the stand two weeks ago that he had recorded the conversation with Ting, but he had been unable to find it up until Sunday night. By Monday afternoon, prosecutors were still trying to transcribe the tape.
For the third time in two weeks, Bonds’ attorney Cristina Arguedas asked U.S. District Judge Susan Illston for an evidentiary hearing, claiming the government had been hiding information significant to Bonds’ defense. Illston finally decided to deny the request for now, saying the government had not committed a withheld exculpatory evidence in violation of the Supreme Court’s landmark 1963 case, Brady v. Maryland.
“I find sloppy practice but no Brady violation and no need at this time for an evidentiary hearing,” Illston said. “As for now the pending request for an evidentiary hearing is denied,” she said.