While Bryant acknowledged the outburst earlier today and said in a statement it did “not reflect my feelings toward the gay and lesbian communities,” he failed to apologize or to take full responsibility for the homophobic slur. This afternoon, the NBA and Commissioner Stern issued a strong condemnation of Bryant’s action and in an unprecedented move, fined the Lakers’ superstar $100,000. “We applaud Commissioner Stern and the NBA for not only fining Bryant but for recognizing that slurs and derogatory comments have no place on the basketball court or in society at large, “ said Joe Solmonese, HRC President. “We hope such swift and decisive action will send a strong and universal message that this kind of hateful outburst is simply inexcusable no matter what the context.”
SAN FRANCISCO – Barry Bonds was convicted of obstruction of justice today, but a jury of eight women and four men could not render a verdict on three counts of perjury after four days of deliberations.
A mistrial was declared on the three perjury counts, and the jury was released.
Bonds sat impassively as the verdict was read.
While the jury was divided on the three charges that Bonds lied when he told a grand jury in 2003 that he had never knowingly used performance-enhancing drugs, the guilty verdict for obstructing the federal investigation of the BALCO case makes him a convicted felon.
A May 20 date was set for a status hearing, at which time a sentencing date will probably be set. Each count carries up to 10 years in prison. However, Bonds is most likely to get probation.
By Jorge L. Ortiz, USA TODAY