The Piledriver Report 03.22.13: The History of Vince McMahon’s Wrestling Empire: Part Ten
Posted by Ronny Sarnecky on 03.22.2013
This edition of “The Piledriver Report’s” History of the WWF/E takes a look at the testimony of the Hulk Hogan and “Big” John Studd in the Vince McMahon steroid trial as we close out this dark chapter in the company’s history.
The witness that everybody was waiting for, Terry "Hulk Hogan" Bollea, took the stand. Hogan told the court that he was a self-employed entertainer. He said that he first used steroids in mid-1976. He said the last time he used steroids was shortly after 1989. Hogan used both oral and injectable steroids. His steroids of choice were dianabol, anavar, winstrol, testosterone, and decadurabolin. He used decadurabolin the most. Hogan said that steroid usage was "fairly common" when he returned to the WWF in late 1983. Hogan estimated that 75-80% of the wrestlers were using steroids. Hogan admitted to seeing steroids being used in the WWF's locker room. Hogan told the court that Dr. Zahorian supplied the wrestlers with steroids, sleeping pills, diet pills, Tylenol III and IV, and Valium. Hogan testified that Zahorian never took any blood work or reviewed any of his medical history. However, Dr. Zahorian gave Hogan whatever he asked for. Hogan said he, not Zahorian, decided on the drug and quantity that he would purchase. Hogan said that cash advances were available every night, regardless if Zahorian was there. Hogan said that Vince was sometimes in the area when Zahorian did his "business." While filming No Holds Barred," Hogan talked to McMahon about ordering steroids. Hogan also talked to Chief Jay Strongbow about steroids when Strongbow wanted to get some for his son.
Hogan explained to the court about how he ordered steroids during the time period in question. Bollea would call Emily Feinberg from the road and tell her to place an order with Zahorian. Hogan claimed to have done this ten times, at the most. Once delivered, Hogan would go to the office and pick them up with his paycheck. He paid for his steroids by cash or check. When he didn't pay for the steroids, it was because McMahon paid for them due to steroids Vince had earlier taken from Hogan. Vince said that Pat Patterson told him that Zahorian was being investigated, and that he shouldn't use him. Although Vince also told Hogan to stay away from Zahorian, McMahon never told Hogan to stop using.
Hogan admitted that he carried steroids with him on the road. Hogan said that he used steroids to heal injuries, to keep going on a tough schedule, and for bodybuilding. Hogan told the court that he first started using steroids to "get big." The prosecutor tried to ask Terry Bollea about the Howard Finkel HIV blood test. However, Vince's attorney objected, and the judge agreed not to allow any questions on the subject. Hogan was asked if the statements that he made after the Zahorian trial were true. Hogan replied that they were not.
Laura Brevetti, one of Vince's attorneys, tried to show that WWF wasn't running any shows at the Meadowlands during 1989 (although this was untrue as SummerSlam 1989 took place there). Hogan wasn't able to remember if they did or not. After Hogan said that he stopped using steroids "a little after 1989." Hogan and his wife wanted to have a second child, so he and his wife talked about him cutting off steroids. Brevetti said that nine months before Hogan's second child was born would have fallen prior to October 1989. This would prove that Hogan wasn't using steroids from the October 24th steroid package that was in question. Hogan rebutted Brevetti's theory by pointing out that he was on steroids when he got his wife pregnant. Brevetti tried to show that Hogan was lying. She asked if he was truthful in his Grand Jury testimony. Hogan said that he was truthful. He said that they DISCUSSED him not using steroids. He told the court that he would have his steroid shipments sent to different friends to hold. Brevetti asked Hogan if he ever talked with the company about who would be responsible for paying for his charter flights. Hogan told the court that he didn't. Brevetti then entered a letter dated April 11, 1989 into evidence. The letter was typed by Emily Feinberg. Hogan said that he doesn't remember the memo. He also didn't remember picking up steroids at the Titan offices during that month. He couldn't remember if Jim Stuart delivered steroids to him at an arena. Hogan admitted that he placed steroid orders with Dr. Zahorian for his personal use only. He told the court that he did not distribute steroids. Hogan told the court that he believed that steroid use was legal, as long as you had a prescription. Hogan said that he received steroids from Dr. Lebowitz in New York, Dr. War in Canada, as well as purchasing from Dr. Zahorian. When they lawyers brought up Dr. Paunovich from Denver as one of Hogan's suppliers, Hogan couldn't remember. However, he later remembered that he received deca from him with a prescription. Hogan admitted that he used to purchase steroids in the 70s and early 80s in gyms. Hogan started using doctors in the AWA and New Japan. When asked if Hogan knew more about steroids in 1994 then in 1980, and that the medical community knows more as well, Hogan responded "Yes, there's more information." When Brevetti asked Hogan the "if you knew then what you know now, would you have used steroids," Hogan answered "That might be the case." Brevetti showed the court a picture of Hogan, Zahorian, and McMahon together. She asked if the three were ever in a room together discussing steroids. Hogan answered, "No, not in a room." Hogan said that Vince never told him to take steroids. He said that he chose to use steroids on his own. Vince's attorney asked if other wrestlers, who used steroids were doing so as a "personal decision," Hogan said they were "to the best of my knowledge." Hogan never heard Vince tell any wrestlers to get on steroids. He never heard any of the WWF's road agents tell the wrestlers that the doctor was here, and "do they need an advance." He mentioned that "rigs" was the term used for "needles," and not needles and steroids, as Emily Feinberg had testified. Hogan said that he heard the term "roid rage," but never experienced it. He also never heard of Vince McMahon getting "roid rage."
While Brevetti tried getting Hogan to admit that wrestlers are naturally aggressive, Hogan wouldn't agree. He did say that some wrestlers may be at times, but never made the connection with their behavior being linked to steroids. Hogan said that the term "larger then life" referred to their "characters, and NOT their physical size." Hogan told the court that the office never paid for his steroids. He also never witnessed the road agents or other WWF employees distribute steroids. Hogan said that between 1985-1991, Zahorian wasn't the only doctor you could go to for steroids. Hogan couldn't remember having any of his steroid packages delivered to Brower's (his friend) house. However, if steroids were delivered there, they were his.
Hogan said that he introduced Brower to Dr. Zahorian. Hogan said that they both used each other steroids, and that they each other with steroids. Hogan didn't believe that his was distribution. Hogan said that he thought that doctors were legally able to dispense steroids, and he didn't know that what Zahorian was doing was illegal. He thought that the people in the WWF felt the same as he did. He admitted to the court of dealing with Zahorian one on one in Hershey, PA. He said that he also talked to Zahorian about medical problems that both he and his wife were having. Hogan told the court that Vince never Fed Ex'ed him steroids from Zahorian. He said that he would pick up his steroid packages from the offices. He said that he ordered these packages by calling Emily Feinberg directly. Hogan said that Vince didn't tell Feinberg to place the orders, and that Hogan called her on his own. Hogan would pick the steroids up himself. He had no recollection of Vince handing him the steroids. He also couldn't remember if Stuart ever delivered packages of steroids to him. Hogan said that if he ever borrowed steroids from other wrestlers, he would repay them with steroids. Hogan described Vince as being a close friend. Hogan admitted that Vince used his deca and anavar. They discussed cycling steroids, how much/how often to use. The attorney asked "at some point during that period bottles may have been given to you in exchange?" Hogan answered "Possibly." Hogan asked Dr. Zahorian about which steroids were safe to use. Dr. Zahorian told him that decadurabolin and anavar were the safest. Zahorian described deca as being "as safe as sugar going through your system." Hogan told the court that he relied on Dr. Zahorian's information. Hogan thought that steroids helped heal injuries faster. Even though he was told to stay away from Zahorian, Hulk still tried to keep in contact with Zahorian. Hogan said that he felt like he was being singled out in 1991 because the "public didn't know anything about steroids." He said that since 1991, the topic of steroids have been brought up in 85% of the interviews that he has given. Hogan said that he lied in many of these interviews, including the infamous "Arsenio Hall Show" interview. Hogan told the court that Vince didn't feel it was a good idea for him to go on Arsenio's show. Hogan said that he didn't tell the truth as a way to "defraud the government or to obstruct justice." He believed that using steroids wasn't a crime. Hogan mentioned that the two main reason for his 1993 WWF return were for money and for exposure to help him in his acting career. Hogan told the court that he and Vince are still friends.
The prosecutor, Terry O'Shea, questioned Hogan. O'Shea asked if Emily Feinberg or Vince McMahon were doctors." Hogan said "No." The prosecutor then asked, "but you got steroids from both." To which Hogan replied, "Yes." O'Shea said that a big part of Hogan's appeal to the crowd was his size and build. O'Shea asked if he got his size from steroids. Hogan responded, "In the past." When asked "like your 22 inch pythons," Hogan said, "Yes, thereabouts." O'Shea asked, "you got to be Hulk Hogan in part, because of steroids?" Hogan answered, "In part." Hogan told the court that Dr. Zahorian gave him a full white prescription pad with every page filled with writing "decadurabolin for Terry Bollea" for bodybuilding purposes to cover himself if steroids were ever found on him. Dr. Zahorian never limited Hogan's quantity of steroids. O'Shea asked "When you gave steroids to McMahon, were you a doctor?" Hogan answered "No." Hogan said that he never told Zahorian to destroy any records of his dealings with him.
Laura Brevetti pointed out to the court that even off of steroids, Hogan still talks about his "22 inch pythons" in interviews.
The next person to testify was Robert Gorse. Gorse was the office manager for Rugby-Darby Pharmaceuticals in Rockville Centre, NY. He told the court that Dr. Zahorian ordered $2,403.00 of steroids in 1988. This increased to $10,132.00 in 1989. It was proven that the deca the police confiscated from Dunn and that Feinberg had in her possession was sent to Zahorian from Rockville Centre on August 30, 1989. Titan lawyer, McDevitt, was blaming the Rugby-Darby company for "not doing its job in monitoring Zahorian's steroid purchases increasing more then four times the year after distribution became illegal."
The last wrestler to testify in the case was John Minton, also known as "Big" John Studd. Minton gave his testimony by telephone. Minton had been receiving chemotherapy treatments due to Hodgkin's Disease. He was suffering from a staph infection in his chest that required surgery. Therefore, his doctor would not let him travel. While the judge denied McMahon's attempt to eliminate Minton from testifying over the phone, the judge did tell the attorneys on both sides that Minton's current physical condition could not be brought up during the trial. It was feared by the defense that the jury would believe the Minton's bout with Hodgkin's Disease was caused by his past steroid use.
Minton told the court that he purchased steroids from Zahorian. He told the court about the same conversation that Zahorian testified about earlier as having. He said that the doctor told him about it. Minton said that conversation took place in Allentown, PA when they were doing television tapings from there. He said that Zahorian told McMahon that if the wrestlers didn't get their steroids from him, they would go to the black market for them. He explained that the wrestlers were better off going through him, then through the black market. Minton was asked, "Did you discuss whether Vince McMahon approved of what he was doing?" Minton said that he didn't remember. He was then asked if Zahorian distributed steroids after the conversation. Minton told the court that he believed that he did. Minton said that he never talked about steroids with Vince McMahon. He said that he only talked about his own wrestling business with Vince. Like Hogan, Minton didn't feel that what Dr. Zahorian was doing was illegal. Minton said that he filed a lawsuit against Titan Sports on June 27, 1994. He was asked if he knew what Zahorian was doing was wrong. Minton said, "It wasn't a crime to me. In those days, if you got a note from a doctor, it was okay." He continued, "During that period of time, steroids were a very important part of our regiment. It was a service. I've never seen steroids forced on anyone. It was of my own free will. I though it helped me to maintain my performance level."
The final witness in the witness in the case was Dr. Gary Wadler. The next "Piledriver Report" will examine Dr. Wadler's testimony, as well as each side's closing arguments.
The final witness in the case was Dr. Gary Wadler. He told the court that the use of steroids via prescription was not just giving someone a note for steroids on a prescription pad. He said that doctors needed to follow up tests and lab work on the patient. He said that what Zahorian was doing with the wrestlers was not part of a doctor/patient relationship. McDevitt was trying to cross up Dr. Walder between his testimony, and what the doctor wrote in his book.
McDevitt argued that the side effects from steroids were done from studies of healthy athletes. The doctor said that when tests were done using clinical doses, steroid have had major side effects. He said that there were no studies done using athletes, because it would be unethical do to the health risks. Walder told the court that there was anecdotal evidence, although no experiments on the subject. McDevitt tried to argue that it doesn't mean a thing. However, Walder argued his point. Walder told the court that the medical community thought steroids were too dangerous for athletic enhancement. They felt that way since the late 60s. Walder testified that when steroids were used in therapeutic doses the subjects suffered any number of liver abnormalities, the development of cysts that can rupture, benign and cancerous liver tumors, prostate changes, malignant kidney tumors, high cholesterol levels, higher risk of heart disease, increased risk of tendon injuries, blood clots, testicular shrinkage, diminished sperm production, swollen nipples, and addiction. Walder told the court that anabolic steroids are not anti-inflammatory drugs, therefor they shouldn't be used for injuries. Walder said, "In my opinion, Dr. Zahorian was not functioning as a doctor. There is no evidence he was dispensing steroids for treatment of a disease." Walder testified that sending steroids via Fed Ex is not proper medical practices. He stated that after 1998, distribution of steroids for anything besides treating a disease was illegal. The prosecutor asked if bodybuilding was a disease. Walder replied that it wasn't. He added that the dangers of steroids were known "well before 1985."
Jerry McDevitt started to talk about a steroid called Dianabol. This steroid was not one of the drugs that Zahorian distributed to the wrestlers. However, McDevitt wanted to prove that Dianabol, a steroid, was created to improve strength. McDevitt and Brevetti wanted to show that steroids were originally created to increase size and strength, and not for healing injuries. Dr. Wadler didn't know about the history behind the drug. He told the court that he was a physician.
McDevitt told the court that "labs were producing and selling too many steroids then could be ever used for its limited specified medical uses." His point was that pharmaceutical companies, and government agencies, such as the FDA, knew that these drugs were being produced to help improve athletic performance. Zahorian showed the court an article from the American Medical Association, which stated that steroids could be provided legally to help increase athletic performance. He said that a doctor has the right to prescribe drugs to their patients for reasons besides what it was indicated for. Dr. Walder agreed, but said, "you still needed a doctor/patient relationship and monitoring of the patient." This is something Dr. Zahorian failed to do.
A 1982 FDA drug bulletin was bought into evidence. It stated that prescription drugs could be issued for unintended reasons. However, the document mentioned that a doctor/patient relationship needed to be maintained in these situations. Dr. Wadler admitted that can increase strength and muscle size. He told the court that their have been studies done, which show that along with weight training and a high protein diet, steroids could help assist in improving muscle size and strength. McDevitt talked about a book written by Dr. Wadler, which was published in 1989. He mentioned that the book did not cite the 1988 changes in the steroid laws. While the book went out to the public in 1989, the book was written before the new drug law. McDevitt then tried to blame Wadler and the book's publishers for having a book "on the market with dated and inaccurate information." McDevitt brought up the study that Wadler earlier talked about steroids helping to improve athletic performance along with a high protein diet and weight training. McDevitt pointed out that this study was in Wadler's book. Therefore, Wadler was advocating steroid usage.
McDevitt said that the reason steroids were banned in sports is because it gives athletes a competitive edge, and not due to any possible side effects. McDevitt tried to point out that Vince McMahon was relying on Dr. Zahorian's opinion as a doctor, and Vince wouldn't know anything better then a doctor would.
Laura Brevetti continued the same argument. She said that doctors learn things about drugs that the average person wouldn't know. She said that we know more now than five years ago, and that the dangers were not as known back then.
The prosecutor, Terry O'Shea, showed a document from the FDA, which talked about the adverse effects that were common amongst steroid users. It also mentioned "roid rage" in users who take large doses.
Dr. Wadler told the court that "the patient doesn't go to the doctor and tell him what drugs he needs and it what quantities. That is drug dealing, and not acting as a doctor." McDevitt tried to counter that anyone can buy over the counter drugs in as large a quantity as they would like. He then mention that there was no literature that states the average person would know the "correct course of action in monitoring patients while on steroid cycles.
At this point, the jury was excused from the courtroom. McMahon's defense team asked the judge to drop the charges before going to the jury. The prosecutor said that he was "getting killed in the arguments on the distribution counts." The judge told O'Shea that he failed to tie the case into the Eastern District. He only mentioned the venue by telling the court that decadurabolin that Zahorian sent to Titan Sports was shipped originally from Rockville Centre, New York. McDevitt countered by saying the package was shipped months earlier. O'Shea relied on Emily Feinberg's notebook to prove the distribution charges. Vince's lawyers tried to say that this was a conspiracy against Vince McMahon. The judge refused the defense's motion to throw out the conspiracy charges. The judge evidence to support a guilty charge. The judge did say that he'd consider throwing out the distribution charges. The judge threw out the distribution charges on July 18th.
On July 20th, the closing arguments in the case began. The prosecutor, Terry O'Shea painted the picture of Titan Sports being a "dark, corrupt business that uses dangerous drugs to increase their profits, they provided drugs to their biggest superstar, all the while they were hiding behind Dr. Zahorian. He said that the WWF now blames Anita Scales and Emily Feinberg. He said that they turned a blind eye to what Zahorian was doing, and then blamed everyone, except for themselves. O'Shea said "We're not talking about the paltry profit Zahorian made, we're talking about the millions of profits they made. Don't let them say they got no money from Zahorian's drug sales." O'Shea said that Vince told Emily to give the drugs to Hulk Hogan. However, the law states that drugs can only be distributed in a "doctor/patient relationship for the treatment of a disease." O'Shea pointed out that Vince McMahon was not a doctor, and Hulk Hogan didn't have a disease. He called Vince a "corporate drug pusher." O'Shea said that some of the wrestlers probably wanted to the drugs, and that every user has an excuse on why he is using. However, "that doesn't mean it's right to distribute the drugs to them." He said that the argument that it was the wrestlers' choice to use steroids didn't mean much. He reasoned that the wrestlers did it because they "wanted more money, and a job." O'Shea pointed out that Pat Patterson knew about the steroid distribution in 1985. He said that Arnold Skaaland and "Chief" Jay Strongbow also knew about Dr. Zahorian's actions as they purchased steroids for their sons to use. O'Shea mentioned the Jack Lanza told Tom Zenk, "Do you need cash? The doctor is here. The doctor has anything you want." Anita Scales found out that Dr. Zahorian was trouble. However, she was told to still use him. Jay Strongbow mentioned to her that "the boys need their candies." O'Shea asked the jury, "when was the last time your doctor sent you a pound of drugs?" He reminded the court that Patterson was uncomfortable on the stand. He mentioned that Patterson never said words like "gas" or "juice," but during Feinberg's testimony, she said Patterson used those terms about "20 times" to her. O'Shea argued that the defense's rationalization that "if they (Titan Sports) didn't use Zahorian, the wrestlers would get their drugs from the black market" was a week argument. O'Shea said that Vince should have told Dr. Zahorian to "stop his dealings, get out of here, and don't come back." O'Shea reminded the court that Dr. Walder mentioned that "Zahorian was a drug dealer in a white coat." He mentioned that drug addicts don't get better. He said that they keep using drugs. O'Shea said that Dr. Zahorian admitted that he was wrong in doing what he did. He was a star-crossed fan, and the WWF knew it, and used it. The wrestlers decided what drugs they would purchase, and how large a quantity. O'Shea said that the doctor was at 50 wrestling events where he distributed steroids to the wrestlers, and also sent them shipments via Federal Express. O'Shea said that Patterson was instructed by Zahorian to call him back on a pay phone. He mentioned that is the action of a drug dealer who didn't want to get caught by the police. He said that the memo showed that Vince McMahon, Linda McMahon, and Pat Patterson were all involved. He said that the memo proved Vince tried to cover up their involvement, and that Linda told Patterson to warn Dr. Zahorian about the investigation on him. In the memo, it stated that Patterson and Linda McMahon decided to keep Dr. Zahorian before the investigation started. O'Shea said that the memo proves that it was illegal, because of the line in the document that read "illegal drugs, including steroids." He told the court that "six weeks before sending the memo the WWF tried to get untraceable laundered checks to get these drugs to their top stars." He claimed that the defense wanted you to believe that Emily Feinberg was the real drug deal. However, he did state that the WWF's memo proves that they knew they were guilty. O'Shea told the court that Scales and Sharkey were just concerned employees. He said they "got in the way of a conspiracy, and that the defense is trying to portray them as liars." O'Shea said that Titan Sports can't blame the state athletic commission for Dr. Zahorian, because the WWF continued to use the doctor even after the commission shut down. He mentioned that Emily Feinberg told the court about 6-7 steroid distributions that she made to Hulk Hogan. Hogan later confirmed this as correct, and then stated that it could have been as many as 10 shipments. He concluded by stating, "It's a corporation of drug pushers trying to blame the little guys. This hugely successful money machine mixed up chemical cocktails to get wrestlers pumped up and keep them going. It's shameful and it's illegal."
The defense was next to close out their case. Laura Brevetti was the first of Titan's attorneys to speak. She told the court that the prosecution had no case, and they just used Hulk Hogan "to breath life into their dead case." Brevetti took a shot at the media. She said that "they singled out Hogan for using steroids." She told the jury "The government is asking you to deduce too much from what they've presented." She said that the government is looking for someone to take the fall, and they chose Vince McMahon because "nobody respects professional wrestling or wrestlers." She called the investigation "all sizzle, but no steak." She said that the government should have been able to provide "more specific dates, conversation, and clearer credible recollections." She reminded the court that Zahorian lied under oath. She asked the court if they were willing to send Vince to jail based on the testimony of a perjurer. She pointed out that Randy Cullley (Moondog Rex), Tom Zenk, Rick Rude, Tully Blanchard, the Warlord, the Ultimate Warrior, and Nailz all used steroids before and after working for the World Wrestling Federation. She also said that Randy Culley was the only wrestler who admitted to purchasing steroids from Zahorian. She mentioned that the wrestlers had other places where they were able to get their steroid supplies from. She said that the government didn't care about where the wrestlers got their steroids. She also noted that the government doesn't care about the current wrestlers who are using. Brevetti said that "it was hypocritical that men like Tom Zenk and Rick Rude walked out of the court room as free men while admitting under oath they recently used steroids while McMahon was on trial. She said that Rude admitted to steroid use, but claimed the government wasn't interested in where he got his steroids from. She reminded the court that we only found out about Rude's on and off steroid use for body building purposes, and to help his joints. She told the jury that Rude was on steroids when he went to the Grand Jury, and he told the government that he was. Brevetti said that "Tom Zenk is the type of individual that would take steroids out of a garbage can and use them." She claimed that Zahorian never bought steroids from Zahorian. She said that he called Linda McMahon at 2:30 in the morning. She said that he walked out on his WWF contract, and is now suing the company. She said that Vince never told Tom Zenk to use steroids. She said that Zenk talked about the steroid use in World Championship Wrestling, and that nobody was interested in that. She then brought up how unfair it was that Tom Zenk admitted in court that he used steroids three weeks that he purchased in a gym, yet he is allowed to leave a free man and wrestle in Japan for $10,000.00. Meanwhile, Vince McMahon had to stand on trial. She mentioned that Randy Culley currently had a lawsuit against Titan Sports. She mentioned that Szopinski was convicted on steroid charges. She noted that as part of his probation he is supposed to be drug tested. She told the court that it's been a year, and he still hasn't been tested. She also brought up that the government never asked him who sold him steroids. Brevetti totally dismissed the testimony of Tully Blanchard. She showed the court Nailz' outfit, so the jury could see that the jumpsuit covered up his muscles. In regards to Nailz, she asked "What do you say about a man who will come to a court room and lie." She mentioned that there was a suit/countersuit going on with Nailz and Vince McMahon. She questioned Nailz's testimony. Asking why would Vince tell him to use steroids in 1992, while Vince was in the middle of getting bad publicity. She also mentioned that during his deposition in his lawsuit against McMahon, Nailz never mentioned that Vince told him to use steroids. Brevetti talked about how both Hulk Hogan and Jim Hellwig testified that Vince never told them to use steroids. Neither believed that Vince and Dr. Zahorian were conspiring either. Brevetti told the court that steroids were easy to get in most gyms, and that steroid use was common in other wrestling promotions. She said that Hulk Hogan was the WWF' biggest star, and that the government used he to try to prove their case. However, when he testified in court, it proved nothing. She told the court that since Hogan used the word "rigs" to describe "needles," and not "steroids," that Emily Feinberg's testimony shouldn't hold merit.
She said that Feinberg went to the government right after she received her last Titan Sports paycheck. Brevetti claimed that Feinberg was an actress, and that she was acting while on the stand. She said that Feinberg testified against Vince McMahon, because she could no longer earn a paycheck from Titan Sports. Brevetti said that Emily knew about the steroids being given to Jim Stuart for delivery to Hogan. Brevetti said that in Feinberg's Grand Jury testimony, she stated that she sent steroids to Hogan on three different occasions. However, in her trial testimony, she mentioned it was 6-7 times. Brevetti said that Feinberg said that the drugs were sent by Jim Stuart to the local arena. However, when she found out that there were no local arena shows around that date, she then mentioned sending the packages via Federal Express service. Brevetti said that Dr. Zahorian told someone in the Pennsylvania state athletic commission that he was distributing steroids to wrestlers. However, the commission still allowed him to be the physician at the WWF's events. She said that no commissioner ever reported his steroid distribution business. In the first Grand Jury testimony, Brevetti said that Zahorian couldn't remember a conversation that he had with Vince McMahon. However, when John Minton ("Big" John Studd) remembered the conversation, the government planted a story in Zahorian's head. There were three different version of the same conversation in three different testimonies. Brevetti then closed by saying that John Minton also had a pending lawsuit against Vince McMahon.
McMahon's other attorney, Jerry McDevitt, was the next lawyer to close the case. McDevitt started by saying that the "hypocracy of the case was violating the law before 1988 because all of the agencies that were supposed to regulate steroid distribution weren't doing their job. He implied that "Dr Walder didn't know anything about steroids." He tried to reason that since the FDA didn't do anything to regulate steroids, so they couldn't be defrauded. McDevitt said that steroids were used to make athletes bigger and stronger. In regards to O'Shea's closing arguments, McDevitt said, " When you have no evidence, you use empty rhetoric. Everything you've learned in this trial about FDA regulatory aspects of steroids is because we (the defense) tried to tell you the truth." He mentioned that the only cover up in the case was the fact that the government was covering up the fact that they had no case. He mentioned that Vince might have had one little conversation about steroids with Dr. Zahorian. When talking about Anita Scales, McDevitt said "We know Anita as part of corporate life. We understand Anita. The facts are nobody told her to hire George Zahorian." He continued that she talked to Patterson about hiring Zahorian during one conversation. He said that there was no proof of another such conversation. McDevitt mentioned that Anita never said that she received an order to hire Zahorian. McDevitt tried to prove that Anita was a liar when he talked about her having a conversation with Zahorian because Sharkey said she had the conversation. In regards to Anita's conversation with Linda McMahon, he said "You saw her (Anita Scales), you can draw your own conclusions if you can be confused talking to Anita. He said that in the end, Titan Sports never hired Dr. Zahorian after the change in the law. McDevitt accused Sharkey being told what to say in her testimony by Scales when they were talking while Jim Hellwig was on the stand. McDevitt said that there were no "untraceable" checks, because the checks were traced and entered into evidence. McDevitt mentioned that "the method of payment doesn't change the legality because McMahon wanted things discreet." McDevitt mentioned that Zahorian said that he told Pat Patterson destroy the records. Patterson has denied this, and the memo never mentioned that anyone should destroy any records. He continued by telling the court that Emily's only shredded just on cover letter. McDevitt said, "As a cover up, this was a lousy cover up. Emily Feinberg destroyed nothing. Every single piece of evidence is sitting there. McDevitt said that Zahorian was assigned to the WWF's, matches by the state of Pennsylvania's athletic commission. He reminded the court that Zahorian admitted that he distributed steroids without the WWF's involvement, and that he was not encouraged by anyone in Titan Sports to distribute steroids to their wrestlers. He admitted that Jay Strongbow and Arnold Skaaland bought steroids for their sons, neither of whom were wrestlers. Dr. Zahorian admitted that nobody told the doctor to sell steroids to wrestlers, and that he talked to Emily Feinberg about payment. He mentioned that Hogan placed orders, and that Dr. Zahorian did not know that Vince McMahon gave steroids to Hulk Hogan. Jerry McDevitt concluded, "This conspiracy idea is trying to create a crime when there wasn't one. They (prosecution) have the burden of proof. They didn't prove it. They didn't come close."
Terry O'Shea finished the closing arguments of the trial. He stated, "These points demand an answer. Some are an outrage. Some of what they've said about the government is an outrage! You're talking about corporate drug dealing." O'Shea mentioned that the memo is the only piece of evidence that is needed to garner a guilty verdict. O'Shea said that the defense was blaming everyone else for something that they did. He said that the defense was blaming the prosecution for putting Hulk Hogan on the stand, and creating a media circus. He defended the move by saying, "We didn't sell Terry Bollea, eat your vitamins kids, when they were pumping him full of steroids. He (Vince McMahon) told Emily Feinberg to distribute drugs to Hulk Hogan. He ordered Doug Sages to get him cash for drugs. He laundered checks. He told Emily to destroy steroid correspondences." He continued, "McDevitt tried to throw smoke up in the air to divert you from the evidence." O'Shea mentioned that "They (Titan Sports) sue someone and then they say that person has a grudge. They say it (the investigation) took too long and it's old. It takes a long time to uncover these things. What is Anita Scales' grudge? What is Emily Feinberg's? Anita and Marge Sharkey are two regular folks. McDevitt tried to tell you they're liars. Ignorance of the law is no excuse. How do we know there aren't more documents." O'Shea reminded the jury that Emily Feinberg talked about 6-7 different distributions, whereas Hulk Hogan mentioned there were probably about ten. However, the government was only able to uncover two transactions. O'Shea continued, "They talk about bias of witnesses. What about Terry Bollea? He said McMahon was one of his best friends. He said they gave him steroids up to ten times." O'Shea mentioned that steroid usage is still going on in the WWF, as Szopinski told them that in August 1993. O'Shea said that "Just because others are violating the law, if you are violating the law, that doesn't make you innocent. Rick Rude is a user, not a pusher. Vince McMahon is the pusher." In regards to future prosecution against World Championship Wrestling, O'Shea said, "If we get any evidence of WCW supplying its wrestlers with steroids, we'll be on them like white on rice. They (WWF) don't like it because we got them and the evidence has them. Now, they want us to go after users. Anybody, but them. O'Shea countered the defense's claim that the prosecution doesn't respect professional wrestlers by saying, "You know who doesn't have any respect for wrestling? It's the defendant, Vincent McMahon. He treated his wrestlers like cattle. He was happy his champion, Jim Hellwig, was using steroids. He was only mad that he got caught. They said Hogan was our star witness. We had to immunize him to get the truth from him. We never tried to create hysteria. They (steroids) were illegal then. They're illegal now. They say roid rage doesn't exist. What's Emily Feinberg's grudge? They say she's an actress. She left the company. Now, you can't leave the company. What's Anita Scales and Marge Sharkey's grudge? Where's their lawsuit? What's Doug Sages' grudge when he squirmed around before admitting he got a bucket full of cash for McMahon and Hogan? What boggles the mind is they say everyone is out to get them. Emily Feinberg came here from a government subpoena. She did as she was told. She didn't distribute on her own. But they tried to put it on her. McMahon gave her the drugs that Bollea picked up. Why is she corroborated up and down by Sages? How is Sages telling the truth and Emily Feinberg is lying when they said the same thing? They didn't just agree break the law. They broke the law. All their tricks didn't help them. They beat up on Emily Feinberg but she was corroborated by Sages on one side, and corroborated by Bollea. She got a grudge, but was corroborated on both ends. When they distributed drugs they broke the law. We're picking on them but you heard other doctors that have gone to jail. If we set them up, did we also write the memo? Why didn't we frame them tighter? If you've found out the doctor is giving out drugs, you say ‘get out, and don't come back.' Vince McMahon said come back. They said come back. When people called Zahorian sleazy and used terms like setting up shop, you don't need to be a doctor to say something wrong was going on. There's a disease that can't be cured. All of the wrestlers suffer from it. And nobody ever gets better. This case isn't about the FDA. That's another smoke screen to create confusion. They say Anita is a liar. No motive, she's a liar. Another excuse, they (drug companies) made too many drugs. It doesn't matter if others are guilty, it matters if they are guilty. They blame the FDA. They say the system was at fault. Listen to the law. They say, ‘please don't look at what we did or you'll convict us.' We all know in our daily life that you can't distribute drugs. When they say that there's no proof, that's a laugh. Which side took sentences out of context to confuse the issue? Dr. Zahorian was never hired, but he was authorized back then to distribute drugs. You can't hide behind a doctor's white coat. You can't obstruct or impede an investigation. If you violate the law, you're guilty. I ask based on the evidence to find the defendants guilty."
With that, the jury was taken away from the courtroom to try and reach a verdict. At 4pm Eastern Standard Time, on July 22nd, 1994, Vince McMahon was found not guilty in the eyes of the twelve jurors in the case. Vince McMahon escaped having to serve any time in jail. The biggest crisis in his life was finally over. It would now be back to the business of running a sports entertainment company for Vince McMahon Jr.
Sources that were used for this article include "The Wrestling Observer" newsletter.