Tarnished Twenty - FindLaw Sports Law Blog

Tarnished Twenty - The FindLaw Sports Law Blog - features sports law news and info about sports figures in trouble with the law


The long legal saga of the Department of Justice versus Barry Lamar Bonds appears to have come to a close, ending not with a bang (or a clang of prison cell doors) but with a whimper: a single paragraph saying the DOJ would not pursue the case to the U.S. Supreme Court.

After at least $6 million spent on his trial and appeals, not a single conviction stuck, not even for lying under oath or misleading prosecutors. So, what did we learn from all this?

Domestic violence, a crime police and prosecutors once considered a family matter, has become a central focus for law enforcement and victim's advocates. The media has shone the most light on domestic abuse involving professional athletes. 

While the Ray Rice incident, with accompanying brutal video footage, might've gained the most attention recently, a new investigation shows that domestic abuse arrests among MMA (mixed martial arts) fighters is twice that of the general population and triple that of NFL players.

A California judge has dismissed a lawsuit alleging FIFA, the U.S. Soccer Federation, and other governing bodies failed to adequately reduce the risk of concussions and other head injuries.

According to U.S. District Judge Phyllis Hamilton, the plaintiffs, seven soccer players, failed to demonstrate any existing or imminent injuries or any link to the organizations named in the lawsuit. While the claims against FIFA were dismissed with prejudice (meaning they can't be brought again), the judge allowed the plaintiffs to amend their claims against other governing bodies if they could provide additional evidence of injuries.

And now for a little Friday fun. We're big fans of Texas Supreme Court Justice Don Willett around these parts. He's an Ice Cube fan and consistently brings a levity to Twitter that feels rare among his judicial colleagues.

It seems like there's nothing this justice can't make funny, but what about when it comes to one of the most sacred announcements concerning human relationships?

Donovan McNabb allegedly had a 0.17 blood alcohol content (over twice the legal limit) when he was arrested for a suspected DUI in Arizona last week. It's the former NFL QB's second such arrest in as many years.

But McNabb has an excuse this time. Video from the incident has McNabb blaming the whole thing on a cold: "Well, first of all, I got a cold. So I've been on cough medicine." Will his defense hold water?

In the wake of several horrifying injuries in the stands, a fan has filed a class action lawsuit against Major League Baseball seeking additional protection from wayward bats and balls. The suit, filed in California by an Oakland A's season ticket holder, wants MLB to extend existing safety netting the full length of the foul lines.

According to a 2014 Bloomberg study, 1,750 fans a year are injured by batted balls. Just last month, a woman at Boston's Fenway Park was seriously injured after being struck in the head by a piece of a broken bat.

The speculation following the Fourth of July weekend was rampant. Rumors were flying that New York Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul had seriously injured himself in a fireworks mishap in Florida.

ESPN appeared to confirm those rumors Wednesday when it reported that medical records showed Pierre-Paul had his right index finger amputated. So how did ESPN get the medical records? And did the publication of the records violate medical privacy laws?

The law has finally caught up with Ray McDonald.

After several arrests for domestic violence, McDonald, the former San Francisco 49er, has been charged with felony false imprisonment and misdemeanor domestic violence, child endangerment, and violating a court order.

What took the Santa Clara District Attorney so long to charge him?

Drones: they're not just for delivering beer or the latest Fifty Shades of Grey book. As with just about every man-made invention, they're also for battling.

That great human impulse to see who can outlast the other in the ring of combat has led to Game of Drones, a drone sales and fighting league that's taking aim at the NFL and others. So how does one-on-one drone combat work, and when will we be seeing it on ESPN?

The euphoria of the USA winning the Women's World Cup was still burning bright this morning, but the afterglow of the historic victory has been tarnished by multiple reports that FIFA is paying the female winners a tiny fraction of what it paid the male winners from last year's tournament.

While the German men's team received $35 million for beating Argentina in Brazil last summer, the United States women got only $2 million for last night's victory over Japan in Canada. So why the discrepancy?