McNamee: I kept drug materials as insurance

Roger Clemens, left, throws as strength coach Brian Roger Clemens, left, throws as strength coach Brian McNamee looks on at the Houston Astros' minor-league camp in Kissimmee, Fla. (Feb. 26, 2006) Photo Credit: AP

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WASHINGTON -- Roger Clemens' defense attorney Rusty Hardin wasted no time Tuesday afternoon in depicting the government's chief witness, Brian McNamee, as an opportunist who used the legal woes of the former Yankees pitcher to promote his business connections.

In a 10-minute blitz at the end of the second day of McNamee's testimony, Hardin asked about steps he said McNamee took to capitalize on the publicity surrounding the indictment of Clemens on perjury charges for denying to Congress that he used steroids.

Hardin asked McNamee, of Long Beach, about the sky-blue tie with an American Nutrition Center logo that McNamee, a former trainer, wore as he went before the federal grand jury that indicted Clemens. Hardin then asked about the company's subsequent auction of the tie.

At first McNamee said he didn't remember the auction. Then he said he had two of the ties, and gave the second for the auction. Finally, McNamee said it was "definitely possible" he had represented that the tie he wore to the grand jury was up for auction. American is a sports nutrition store in Everett, Mass.

"Is this one of those moments where you are starting to remember things you have forgotten?" Hardin asked.

In the final minutes of the day, Hardin showed a picture of McNamee laughing on the set of the Howard Stern radio show. Hardin said McNamee went there to promote his website business, SportsImproper.com, a sister company to American Nutrition Center.

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"That's a little more raucous, would you say, than you have appeared before the jury for the last two days," this week, Hardin asked, adding that McNamee laughed at Stern's jokes made at the expense of Clemens and his wife, Debbie.

Hardin's fast questioning of McNamee changed the deliberate pace set by Assistant U.S. Attorney Daniel Butler and foreshadowed the cross-examination that Hardin will continue this morning.

Earlier, under Butler's questioning, McNamee said he kept the needles and steroid ampules he used to inject Clemens -- a key piece of government evidence -- to placate his wife's concerns that he would one day take the fall for Clemens' drug use.

In an emphatic voice, McNamee said his wife at the time told him during heated arguments, "You're going to go down, you're going to go down, you're going to go down."

So after injecting Clemens in August 2001, he took the needle, bloody gauze and cotton swabs, and stashed them in an empty beer can from Clemens' recycling bin. He said that calmed things with his wife, Eileen, who filed for divorce in 2010.

McNamee said he gave Clemens 16 to 30 injections in 2000, and testified that in 2003 Clemens asked him to obtain human growth hormone for his wife.McNamee said Clemens later called him into a bathroom in Clemens' Houston home. With Roger Clemens standing by the shower, McNamee stepped behind Debbie. She lifted her shirt above her navel and McNamee pinched her skin for the injection.

"She looked behind me at Roger, and said, 'I can't believe you're going to let him do it,' " McNamee said. "Roger said, 'He injects me. Why can't he inject you?' "

McNamee said he felt "creepy" injecting Clemens' wife.

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