Tuesday, October 21, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Hoskins’ testimony could hurt Bonds

By
March 23, 2011 |

SAN FRANCISCO — Barry Bonds looked at the witness stand with a blank expression as a childhood friend and former business partner described how baseball’s biggest star walked into the master bedroom at his spring training home along with trainer Greg Anderson, who had a syringe with a needle.

A few minutes later, Bonds and Anderson walked out.

Steve Hoskins testified in federal court Wednesday that he never saw Anderson inject Bonds. The question for the jury will be whether Hoskins’ description, which the defense began to challenge later in the day, is a path toward convicting Bonds of lying when he told a grand jury seven years ago he never knowingly took steroids.

Speaking softly and fidgeting a bit in the witness chair, Hoskins gave the first dramatic testimony in the trial of the home-run king, who faces four counts of making false statements and one count of obstruction.

Hoskins said he witnessed scenes of Bonds and a needle-bearing Anderson entering a bedroom once or twice each spring training for three straight years starting in 2000.

A partner with Bonds in a memorabilia business, Hoskins said the home-run hitter asked him to inquire about the effects of the steroid Winstrol in 1999, at around the time Bonds was having left elbow surgery April 20. Hoskins said he went to Dr. Arthur Ting, who is expected to testify later in the trial, and brought a sheet of information back to the slugger. Hoskins said he planned to go to Bobby Bonds, the defendant’s father and a former major leaguer himself, to express his suspicions.

“I was concerned in 1999 after speaking with Dr. Ting about it,” Hoskins testified. “In 2003 I was even more concerned because it was getting — it just seemed to be getting out of hand.”

This was the period when Bonds noticeably bulked up and started posting unprecedented power numbers for the San Francisco Giants. The seven-time NL MVP hit a season-record 73 homers in 2001 en route to a career record 762 by the time of his last season in 2007 — months before he was indicted for his 2003 grand jury testimony.

Hoskins, who also helped Bonds get his equipment in order at the ballpark, said Bonds’ body changed in this period — prosecutors allege the transformation was caused by steroids.

“His shoe size just got bigger,” Hoskins said. “His glove size changed. … His body weight changed. He got heavier and bigger.”

Bonds, in a lighter gray suit than previous days and a striped tie, took copious notes during the testimony of Hoskins, who followed federal agent Jeff Novitzky to the stand and became the second witness in a trial expected to last about a month.

Both prosecutors and the defense played for the jury portions of a recording Hoskins secretly made of a conversation that took place in front of Bonds’ locker in 2003. Hoskins said he put an Olympus digital recorder in a pocket and recorded Anderson “to show Bobby actually what really was going on.”

“That was the only way to prove it to him,” Hoskins said.

Hoskins never played the conversation for Bobby Bonds, who by 2003 was ill with cancer and died that August.

Much of the recording was first released by the prosecution in February 2009. At one point, Anderson is heard discussing what the government alleges are designer steroids he supplied to Bonds. “But the whole thing is … everything that I’ve been doing at this point, it’s all undetectable,” he said.

Voices on the recording were muffled, and during the portion played by the prosecution, jurors were given transcripts to aid them. Hoskins also admitted he secretly recorded conversations with Ting and a lawyer for the slugger, Laura Enos. Hoskins said the Ting recording had disappeared.

Hoskins said earlier that Bonds became angry when speaking near the ballpark batting cage in 2002 because “Greg would not give Barry a shot.”

“Barry just said that if Greg wouldn’t give him the shot, he’d give it to himself,” Hoskins said under questioning from Assistant U.S. Attorney Matthew A. Parrella.

Jurors took notes as Hoskins spoke. He directed his answers to the prosecutor, unlike Novitzky, who turned and addressed the panel.

Hoskins was a friend and go-fer to Bonds, besides being a business partner. He acknowledged giving thousands of dollars in cash to two women Bonds was dating.

Defense lawyer Allen Ruby, in the first 2½ hours of a cross-examination that is to continue Thursday, tried to build an argument that Hoskins came forward against Bonds only after the player terminated their joint business on March 27, 2003. While Hoskins had previously said the conversation with Anderson took place in March, Ruby played a portion of the recording in which Bonds’ early season slump was discussed, an indication the conversation took place in April — after Bonds told Hoskins their business relationship was over.

After giving answers that differed from his grand jury testimony several years ago, Hoskins claimed there were errors in both the grand jury testimony and a government report on an April 2005 meeting he held with prosecutors. The report of that meeting, according to Ruby, says Hoskins claimed to have seen Bonds injected.

The defense attacked Hoskins’ credibility by accusing him of attempting to extort Bonds, which Hoskins denied. Ruby also made a point that after Bonds went to authorities alleging Hoskins had forged his signature, the U.S. attorney’s office in Seattle — where the case had been referred — never interviewed Hoskins. At around the same time, Hoskins began cooperating in the investigation into Bonds by the U.S. attorney’s office in San Francisco.

Hoskins said that before his falling out with Bonds, he had the authority to sign the player’s name on contracts. In one deal, in which Hoskins’ company Kent Collectibles was to be paid $400,000 by Goldin Sports Marketing, Ken Goldin and Hoskins instead arranged for Bonds to receive a Bentley automobile.

“His accountants would not let him buy a car at value,” Hoskins said.

Despite giving evidence against Bonds to the government, Hoskins said he admired the player.

“I’d never want to get Mr. Bonds in trouble in any way, shape or form,” he said, calling him “a very good friend” and “a very good person.”

“I was the one trying to stop him from taking steroids because I thought it was bad for him,” Hoskins said.

Comments

comments

The Associated Press

  • Recent Posts

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this newspaper and receive notifications of new articles by email.

  • .

    News

    Winters homicide case enters jury-selection phase

    By Lauren Keene | From Page: A1

     
    So much more than a cute baby store

    By Bob Schultz | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    Suspected arson fires concern neighbors, firefighters

    By Lauren Keene | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    Apply now for community mediation training

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Paws for Thought: Pets for Vets: matches made in heaven

    By Evelyn Dale | From Page: A3 | Gallery

     
    ‘Tokyo Kill’ author will visit bookstore

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3

    DPNS has play group, preschool openings

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    Sierra Club gathers for morning walks

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A3

    Yolo Knitters Guild plans fall meetings

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    Local farm products found at hospital market

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Tax tips offered for sole proprietors

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

     
    First-time home buyers get free advice

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Psychiatric clinic hosts open house

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Beer dinner set on Co-op patio

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Walkin’ the Dawg through the park

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4 | Gallery

     
     
    Essay contest winners will be honored Tuesday

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

    Library hosts after-hours teen movie nights

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Volunteers sought to make veggie bags

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    Forum eyes impacts of raising the local minimum wage

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5

     
    NAMI-Yolo family support group meets Sunday

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A7

    To save the birds, look to the fish

    By Kat Kerlin | From Page: A7 | Gallery

     
    Birding field trip planned Saturday

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A12 | Gallery

    .

    Forum

    Ready to go, whatever happens

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

     
    Where there’s a will …

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

    Sunder has bold vision

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A8

     
    Archer, Nolan are my picks

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A8

    She’s innovative, passionate

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A8

     
    An accidental fan becomes a baseball devotee

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A8

    U.N. steps up to lead Ebola response

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A8

     
    John Cole cartoon

    By Debbie Davis | From Page: A8

    These three are the best

    By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A8

     
    .

    Sports

    Villegas wonderstrike powers Devils

    By Evan Ream | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    DHS golfers take the title

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

    Devil defense regresses in football loss

    By Thomas Oide | From Page: B1

     
    UCD’s Wegener is the engine that drives the train

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

    Sports briefs: Top-end tennis talent helps DHS girls grab a win

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B2 | Gallery

     
    Junior Blue Devils: Regular slate ends with 2 Davis teams playoff bound

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B3 | Gallery

    After running the gridiron gauntlet, can UCD regroup?

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B8 | Gallery

     
    .

    Features

    .

    Arts

     
    Stories on Stage Davis presents tales by Lescroart, Montieth

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A11 | Gallery

     
    .

    Business

    .

    Obituaries

    Peggy Belenis Swisher

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

     
    .

    Comics

    Comics: Tuesday, October 21, 2014 (set 1)

    By Creator | From Page: B5

     
    Comics: Tuesday, October 21, 2014 (set 2)

    By Creator | From Page: B7