Washington, DC – Roger Clemens was found not guilty Monday on all six charges brought by the government in its second go-round charging the former pitcher with lying to Congress about taking performance-enhancers.
A 12-person jury found Clemens not guilty on two counts of perjury, three counts of making false statements and one count of obstruction of Congress.
Clemens, prevented from talking about the case for so long, choked up near the end of remarks made outside the courthouse, calling the ordeal "a hard five years" while thanking his attorneys and the former teammates who either showed up to testify in the nine-week trial or lent their support in other ways.
"I put a lot of hard work into that career," said Clemens, 49. "So, again, I appreciate my teammates that came in and all the emails and phone calls from my teammates."
The 354-game winner was on trial for allegedly lying to Congress in 2008 by saying he never used performance-enhancing drugs, including steroids and human growth hormone.
It was the second time in as many years the government failed to make charges stick.
Clemens was retried after U.S. District Court Judge Reggie Walton declared a mistrial in the case last July 14 when the prosecution presented evidence he deemed inadmissible.
Jury deliberation continued Monday morning after breaking up last week.
Clemens attorney Rusty Hardin said anyone who watched or listened to the trial knows the jury made the right decision and called it "a day of celebration" for the pitcher who "was the same person" from ages 16 to 45.
"It has been 4 1/2 years since we listened to a picture that doesn't match up with the man we've grown to know and love," Hardin said about the charges against his client.
"Justice won out," the attorney said.
Clemens didn't take the stand in his own defense. His testimony to Congress in February 2008 came months after the release of the Mitchell Report on the use of performance-enhancers in baseball, in which Clemens was among the players implicated in using them.
Ex-Clemens trainer Brian McNamee testified that he injected the seven-time Cy Young Award winner with steroids and HGH. Clemens, who retired in 2007, said previously the only thing McNamee ever injected him with was the pain-killer lidocaine and the vitamin B-12.
In May, Yankees pitcher Andy Pettitte was among those who testified against Clemens when he recalled how his longtime friend told him he had used human growth hormone.
Pettitte -- who has copped to using the drug himself -- said Clemens accused him of not remembering their conversation correctly, saying it was Clemens' wife who had used HGH and not the pitcher. Pettitte admitted in court that he may have not understood the conversation correctly, according to accounts.
Walton declared a mistrial last year based on video footage he deemed to be inadmissible that showed a congressman reading an affidavit from Pettitte's wife which corroborated the pitcher's claims that Clemens discussed the use of HGH with him.
Prosecutors were given permission by Walton in September to again put Clemens on trial.