Former Giant receiver Plaxico Burress testified for three hours in front of a grand jury today, then followed his time on the witness stand with the first words he's spoken to reporters since the day he shot himself in the leg inside a Manhattan nightclub eight months ago today. Burress said, “I was truthful, I was honest and I am truly remorseful for what I’ve done, what happened and what I did. I just want to thank everybody — family, friends and fans — for their support.”
His lawyer, Benjamin Brafman, then had plenty more to say to the press, explaining why his client took the unusual step of testifying at this stage of the proceedings. Brafman said, "I think it took a big man — not just physically, but a big man to come here today and acknowledge his responsibility and ask for the compassion of the people who he testified before...In order to humanize him, they (the jurors) needed to see who he was and what this man is about. He didn't hide. He came in. He stood there like a man and took as many questions as the prosecutors had."
Brafman then went on to discuss all of the "mitigating factors" in this case that he hopes will sway the grand jury not to indict—such as the gun having been registered in another state and the "suffering" the receiver has already gone through. On Monday Manhattan DA Robert Morgenthau spoke openly about the case, saying that his office would do everything in its power to get Plax behind bars for an extended stay. Burress did not take any questions outside the courthouse today, although one fan fired away, "Hey, Plax, Cowboys or Raiders?"