No trial date has been set for the Roger Clemens perjury case, but the federal judge in Washington who was assigned the matter said today he is hopeful the former pitcher will stand trial by spring 2011.
Judge Reggie Walton of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia brought up the Clemens prosecution this afternoon at a hearing in an unrelated matter.
When Walton (at left) noted to the lawyers in the courtroom how he’d picked up the Clemens case, one of the attorneys said, loudly, “congratulations.” The remark drew laughter in the crowded room on the sixth floor of the E. Barrett Prettyman U.S. Courthouse in downtown Washington.
Walton called the Clemens case an “intangible” on his schedule and said it is his hope the trial will happen by this spring. He said he should know more about scheduling in the Clemens case in a week or so. An arraignment date has not been set. Clemens was indicted last week on charges that including lying to Congress about steroid use.
The timing of the Clemens trial—if Clemens in fact goes to trial—could impact an unrelated high-profile civil case pending before Walton. In that case, the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority is being sued for last year’s subway train crash that killed nine people and injured more than 75 others. Walton's remarks came today during a hearing in the WMATA case.
Yesterday, Walton issued a gag order in the Clemens case, citing public remarks from certain parties involved in the matter, including Clemens himself.
National Law Journal photo by Diego M. Radzinschi.