U.S. District Court
Barry Bonds’ ex-personal shopper said she saw trainer Greg Anderson inject Bonds in the abdomen before a Giants road trip in 2002.
But Bonds’ former orthopedic surgeon undercut key aspects of the prosecution's case, flatly denying he had ever discussed the slugger’s alleged steroid use with his business manager, as prosecutors had claimed.
Witnesses Kathy Hoskins and Dr. Arthur Ting – one favorable to the government, the other of great aid to the defense – testified Thursday as the second week of Bonds’ trial on charges of lying under oath and obstruction of justice came to a close.
Bonds, baseball’s home run champion, is accused of lying in a 2003 appearance before the grand jury that investigated the BALCO sports steroid scandal. The former Giants star said he had never knowingly used banned drugs and had never received an injection from anyone other than a physician. He has pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Hoskins described herself to the federal court jury as a girlhood friend of Bonds.
Her father, the late 49ers lineman Bob Hoskins, was close to the late Bobby Bonds, the onetime Giants outfielder and Barry Bonds’ father, and the families lived near one another on the Peninsula.
She recalled that when she was a freshman at Carlmont High School in Belmont, she invited Bonds to be her date to the school Sadie Hawkins Day dance. Bonds usually shows no reaction to testimony, but he smiled as she told the anecdote.
Kathy Hoskins is also the sister of Steve Hoskins, the former Bonds business manager who had a bitter breakup with the slugger in 2003. He has emerged as a key government witness.
In about 2001, Kathy Hoskins said she offered to select some more fashionable clothes for Bonds. Bonds liked what she bought, she said. For two years after that she said she was his personal shopper, selecting his wardrobe and, later, coming to his Hillsborough home to pack his clothes before road trips.
On those visits, Kathy Hoskins said she always encountered trainer Greg Anderson, whom the government has claimed was Bonds’ steroid supplier.
If Anderson wasn’t there, she said Bonds would telephone him.
“Barry would just be telling Greg, ‘Bring your fat ass up here and when I call you, you need to be up here,’” she said. Anderson and Bonds would go into the office off the bedroom and emerge after a few minutes. Then Anderson would leave, she said.
The routine was altered before one 2002 road trip, she testified.
“Greg came into the bedroom, he was milling around – he was right here, right there, whatever,” she testified. “Barry was just like, ‘Do it right here.’
“Barry lifted his shirt. He’s like, ‘This is Katie, she’s my girl, she ain't going to say nothing to nobody.’ So Greg shot him in the belly button."
“Barry said, ‘This is a little something, something for when I go on the road – you can’t detect it, you can’t catch it.’”
Human growth hormone, a performance-enhancing drug, is typically injected into the abdomen, according to testimony in the case.
The family tensions wrought by the Bonds trial were apparent during Kathy Hoskins’ testimony. Under questioning from defense lawyer Cristina Arguedas, the witness complained that her brother “threw me under the bus” by telling federal agents that she had seen Bonds being injected with drugs.
Later, prosecutor Matthew Parrella asked if she was happy about testifying.
“No,” she snapped. Then she said, “They put me in the middle of it,” and started to cry. She began crying again as she walked from the witness stand. Bonds’ mother, seated in the front row, appeared to lose her composure as well.
Earlier, the government’s decision to call Dr. Ting to the witness stand backfired, as Bonds' surgeon contradicted significant portions of Steve Hoskins’ testimony from earlier in the trial.
Ting acknowledged that in 1999 he photocopied medical literature about the side effects of steroids and gave the material to Steve Hoskins, whom he said he knew as Bonds’ “handler.”
That tracked with Hoskins’ testimony: The business manager claimed that Bonds told him in 1999 to get information from Ting about the steroid Winstrol. Hoskins said Bonds had confessed he was using steroids and feared the drugs had brought on an elbow injury.
But under questioning from defense lawyer Arguedas, Ting disputed almost every other aspect of Steve Hoskins’ account.
The business manager had said he discussed the steroids Winstrol and Deca-Durabolin with Ting. Ting said that didn’t happen.
Hoskins said he had repeatedly phoned Ting at Bonds’ instruction to check out other drugs – as many as 50 times. Ting said that didn’t happen, either.
Further, Hoskins said that after Bonds underwent elbow surgery, Ting declared that the injury was likely related to steroid use.
That was untrue as well, Ting said. And when Hoskins obtained the information about steroids, Bonds’ name wasn’t mentioned, Ting said.
“Did Stevie ever say to you, ‘I need to get the information so I can get it back to Barry, so we would know what the effect of the steroids was?’ Did he ever say that to you?” Arguedas asked.
“No,’ Ting said.
“Did Stevie say to you, ‘Barry is taking Winstrol or Deca'?” Arguedas asked at another point.
“No,” Ting replied.