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Monday, July 10, 2006

Duke Case: Facts, Rumors, Hearsay, & Speculation

updated:

Hard news on the Duke case is skimpy right now. One news item:

WRAL.com - Duke Rape Suspect To Appear In D.C. Court On Assault Charge:

A Duke University lacrosse player accused of raping an exotic dancer is expected to appear in a Washington, D.C. court on Monday in connection with an unrelated assault charge.

Finnerty, who had a plea deal in the assault case until the rape allegations surfaced in March, last appeared in the D.C. COURT on April 25. During that appearance his Tattorney, Steve McCool, asked the case to be postponed pending the rape investigation.

However, there are no shortage of rumors and speculation based on a fact or two on the message boards.

One report said the ex-husband of the accuser, Crystal Gail Mangum, was jailed. It appears this report might be true, based on the inmate search at durham.nc.us.

FreeRepublic.com - Ex-husband, Kenneth Nathaniel McNeil in jail:

MCNEIL, KENNETH, NATHANIEL
Date Confined Date Released Statute Description
6/20/2006 [incarcerated] NON-SUPPORT OF CHILD
6/20/2006 [incarcerated] (M) ASSAULT ON A FEMALE
6/20/2006 [incarcerated] (M) ASSAULT ON A CHILD UNDER 12
6/20/2006 [incarcerated] NON-SUPPORT OF CHILD
6/20/2006 [incarcerated] DV PROTECTIVE ORDER VIOL

Source:
Durham County Government - Inmate Population Search (scroll down) [durham.nc.us]

Boards.CourtTV.com - More arrests in Durham:
Several of the figures around the AV have been arrested since this case began (by Nifong, I assume, since the Durham police chief seems to have become invisible).

Two of them are currently in jail (her ex-husband and her current boyfriend); another friend was arrested and now is awaiting trial.

The other stripper's' ex-husband was also arrested and held for a few days. And then there was the immigrant taxi driver who was arrested on an out-of-date warrant.

Is all this supposed to be just coincidence? (Can you spell, 'intimidation'?) And the other stripper had her bail reduced in another case after a meeting with the prosecution; and the Durham police chief's daughter has some problems with the law, too.

Is something in Durham begining to resemble the scent of rotting fish?
No confirmation yet, regarding an arrest of the boyfriend, Matthew Murchison, or of any female friend (LaJuana?).

This story is fact. WRAL.com reported on July 3rd - Durham Police Arrest 12 In Prostitution Operation:
Twelve women were arrested during an undercover prostitution sting in eastern Durham.
Anonymous on FriendsOfDuke said:
If I had to guess why the Durham PD has had Murchison and McNeill arrested and jailed, it is to put pressure on them to shut up about the rest of CGM's client list.

A list that is reputed to contain several high-level Durham officials (read Durham PD and city council members)

This is also likely the reason for the mass arrest last week of the majority of Durham's other prostitutes.

Of course that info will eventually come out. And Mark Gottlieb may even go to jail before it is over.

(There is at least one Durham Sun reporter who has hinted to me that they know the names and have not been allowed by publisher Bob Ashley to print them).

Another one from FriendsOfDuke:
Many sites are now saying that the AV's, False accuser, what have you- best friend (female) named LaJuana has been arrested and is jail unable to post bond. Word from Durham is that she was looking for $25,000 for a story about the False Accuser. One of the Investigators in the D.A.'s office brought her up on worthless check violations and some other charge. Her story is locked up with her now, and certainly no one will pay her now that she's damaged goods.

The D.A.'s office is spending an enormous amount of time and energy on this case. The Woman's family claims that she has been in police protection since mid-March. 2 police men assigned to her full time. I'd like to see the total bill, but we probably never will. The Newspaper people won't do it, that's for sure.

Newport @ talkleft.com speculates:
Nifong may have endured the media bombshells alluded to above, but the one "bombshell" even he could not ignore would be that Precious had recanted her "story" to a confidant after the night in question. That was what happened in the Tawana Brawley hoax and that was what put Mr. Brawley's rape allegations to bed.

Nifong must know the potential value of Murchison to the defense, not only as to the timing of the sex that produced the only semen recovered from the FA, but as a likely person to which a recantation may have been delivered. Remember, Murchison was in the dark about Precious's sordid alter ego, i.e., student and mother of two by day, Durham prostitute by night.

Murchison is a likely person to turn on Precious and deliver to the defense any recantation provided when he undoubtedly confronted Precious upon learning her true identity. Hence, Murchison gets locked up to play keep away and to impress upon Murchison the power of the Great Nifong, and what can happen if he strays away from the prosecution "fold." This shows the tremendous evil of Nifong, if true. All that being said, I have not yet seen anything definative on Murchison's state of incarceration.

Reminder: the above consisted of rumors, hearsay, and speculation based it seems on one fact.

Bottomline, it would be nice if The News & Observer, The Herald-Sun, or one of the other local news media could really do some serious investigation on this case.

If the history of this case is any indicator, there will certainly be more twists and turns before these three young men are exonerated.

update #1: The Editor's Blog at The News & Observer is drawing questions like this one-
07/09/06 at 21:25
There is a lot of investigative reporting the N&O could do:

1) Why hasn't the DA turned over the required written police report of Sgt. Gottlieb yet? Why the delay in putting the statements of police and witnesses down on paper? What about the meetings between Nifong and police investigators with he alleged victim?
2) How was Nifong able to talk about condoms, choke-holds, and date rape drugs when he already had the statements by the SANE nurse, alleged victim, her driver, Kim contradicting these charges?
3) What is the relartionship between Kim's bond reduction and her change in view that a rape could have happened?
4) Why are so many associates of the alleged victim in jail now?
5) Why has Chief Chalmers been uninvolved?
6) What is the size of the bathroom at 610 Buchanan? Could 4 or 5 people actually fit into the bathroom?
7) What has the cost of the investigation been for Durham County-- the extra DNA tests, invetsigators' time, alleged police protection for the alleged victim?
8) Where is the alleged victiom now? Has she been in detox or psychiatric treatment in the last 3 months?
9) What is the position of the Duke law faculty on the case?
10) Would Duke consider a waiver to allow Seligmann and Finnerty to return before a trial? Would the 2 defendants ever consider returning to Duke?
11) What is the relationship between the Durham PD and Nifong at this time?
12) Is there any relationship between ongoing prostitution arrests and stings and the alleged victim? Have the alleged victim or Kim ever cooperated with the Durham PD on past law enforcement investigations? Have individuals associated with the case been past clients of the alleged victim or Kim?
13) What is the past history and current status ot Allure and Bunnyhole Entertainment-- the two escort service involved?

These are just a few of the many questions I have about this case. Please look critically at your coverage-- there is a lot more to be done.
and comments like this:
For a local newspaper, your coverage on this case leaves a lot to be desired. You will never be anything more than a 3rd rate tabloid until you get some reporters who actually can get up from their desks. It is outrageous for a local newspaper in the midst of a high profile case to be so lazy.

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