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Thursday, February 22, 2007

Duke/Nifong Hoax: Day #310

Updated - today's items:

John in Carolina:
Nifong & AG prosecutor questions: Help, please — Are the special prosecutors responsible only for determining whether the Hoax case should continue or be dismissed? As they go through all those boxes of evidence and they see, for example, Crystal Mangum’s charge that she was robbed, do they have any responsibility to consider whether charges should be brought concerning it? ...

Ex-prosecutor said... — Here's my view as an ex-prosecutor but not from NC.

Generally, special prosecutors replace the DA who has withdrawn from the case, and have sole responsibility for deciding whether it should proceed or they should seek dismissal. In most jurisdictions, the dismissal recommendation is made to the judge assigned to the case, who may accept or reject it....

This is the most egregious case of DA misconduct that I have ever seen. Distill the misconduct of DAs in other cases, mix them together, and the blend can't approach the misdeeds of Mr. Nifong. Personally, I'd rather pass consecutive kidney stones than prosecute this case.
John in Carolina:
Piot's "wall of silence" response — On Feb. 12 on Duke West Campus African and African American and Cultural Anthropology professor Charlie Piot, a signatory of the now discredited faculty Group of 88 "listening statement," delivered a vicious ad hominem which targeted historian and Brooklyn College professor Robert KC Johnson, a leading critic of the statement as well as some individual signees whose actions have shocked many in the Duke community and elsewhere.

Piot didn't make print copies of his attack available; and event "sponsors" won't release to Johnson and others a tape of Piot's ad hominem...

Jim Lindgren, The Volokh Conspiracy:
How was departmental support for the Group of 88's letter obtained? — I was reading through KC Johnson's blog last night and something absolutely floored me. A reader asks: Take a look at the mini-script at the bottom of the Group of 88 ad. It states in part:... Does this mean these departments and programs approved of the ad? Was it the head of each department or program that gave assent? Was a vote taken among the faculty of each of these departments or programs approving of their support?...

This makes absolutely no sense to me. As a former associate dean at two universities, I have trouble understanding how this state of affairs could be true...So now one must consider the other possibilities, in which at least some departments and programs did not have a meeting and vote on joining the Group of 88....

Aaron Beard, AP/WRAL:
Duke Lacrosse Program Nears End of Long Road Back — They've waited nearly a year for this, for the moment when "Duke lacrosse" will mean something other than what did or didn't happen last spring.

They know that for most, those words will always conjure memories of a party gone wrong, of strippers and a canceled season and allegations of rape. They know those words will forever stain the three former teammates still charged with sexual assault and kidnapping, as well as the veteran prosecutor who faces disbarment for what many call his reckless pursuit of those charges. But not on Saturday. That's when "Duke lacrosse" will - for the first time in a year - be nothing more than the name of the home team, back on the field to start a new season against Dartmouth...

Today, there is hardly anyone left who believes prosecutors have enough evidence to win convictions, and public sentiment has turned almost entirely in the lacrosse players' favor...
LieStoppers forum — AP: No One Believes Prosecutors Can Win Conviction

Daily News Headline: Rapper's lacrosse shtick scores no points at DukeNew York Daily News:
Rapper's lacrosse shtick scores no points at Duke — Rapper Common may face a cold welcome when he performs at Duke University's Last Day of Classes concert on April 25. The rapper bad-mouthed players involved in the lacrosse team's alleged rape scandal while performing at Emory University last year.

"F— them damn n—s from Duke lacrosse," he freestyled, and a concertgoer claims he later added, "I really believe in my heart that those boys in Duke lacrosse did it — that they raped a black princess."

But he's not too outraged to take the university's money...
LieStoppers: Rapper Rips Finnerty, Evans, and Seligmann...

Gregory Beaton, Duke Chronicle:
Finnerty, Seligmann look at other schools — Despite their recent reinstatements to the University, Reade Seligmann and Collin Finnerty are evaluating several possibilities for their future academic and athletic careers. Men's lacrosse head coach John Danowski confirmed Wednesday that both Seligmann and Finnerty were looking at other schools.

"I think they're exploring options, and we're supportive of that," Danowski said. "As we've said, we'd love to have them back." Danowski said he had been working with Collin Finnerty's father, Kevin Finnerty, in evaluating other programs.

"We understand their situation and support them in whichever direction they take," Danowski said. "We hope it's back with us, but we certainly are supportive of whatever happens."

Brown University's campus newspaper, The Brown Daily Herald, first reported Wednesday that Brown was recruiting Seligmann and that Seligmann had expressed interest in playing there...

Zachary Chapman, Brown Daily Herald:
U. recruiting former Duke lacrosse player — Reade Seligmann, one of three former Duke University lacrosse players facing sexual offense and kidnapping charges stemming from conduct at a party last spring, is being recruited as a transfer student by the men's lacrosse team.

Head Coach Lars Tiffany '90 confirmed that Brown is recruiting Seligmann.

"Yes, he is interested in Brown University, and we are recruiting him," Tiffany said. Due to NCAA recruiting regulations, Tiffany said he could not provide any further comment...
News 14 Carolina:
Brown recruiting Duke lacrosse player

LieStoppers: Seligmann recruited by Brown
TalkLeft: Brown University recruiting Seligmann

Brianne Dopart, Herald-Sun:
Police: Duke employee with alleged rapist — Durham police say a Duke University Hospital employee accompanied alleged rapist Michael Burch to an off-campus party at which they say Burch, 21, assaulted and raped an 18-year-old Duke student.

According to a search warrant filed by police investigators Tuesday, Burch, known to witnesses at the party as "Chris," played basketball with Duke University employee Brandon Rogers on the day the two attended a Phi Beta Sigma party at a 405 Gattis St. duplex. Burch, an employee of Roses Stores Inc., who worked at the retailer's N.C. 54 location in Durham, was arrested and charged with second-degree rape eight days after the allegations were first made. He has since been released on $50,000 bond...
LieStoppers forum: Link to Party in other Rape case

KC Johnson:
Double Standards (see comments) — Two cases, both involving allegations of rape at a party held in an off-campus house rented by Duke students. The disparities in the responses are striking....The Police...The Neighbors...The Faculty...The Media...The University...
Application for Search Warrant in the Matter of Michael Jeramaine Burch (.pdf, 9 pages)

Simon, Classical Values blog:
Duke And The Cultural Marxist Program — I was commenting at Durham in Wonderland about the Duke Lacrosse case. I was explaining what the faculty Group of 88 are really up to and explaining their motivation. Cultural Marxism explains what the Gang 88 is up to. The subversion of America. i.e. turning America into the USSR. An excerpt from the above Cultural Marxism link: Both communism and the New Left are alive and thriving here in America. They favor code words: tolerance, social justice, economic justice, peace, reproductive rights, sex education and safe sex, safe schools, inclusion, diversity, and sensitivity. All together, this is Cultural Marxism disguised as multiculturalism...

Random cavity check anyone?LieStoppes:
D.A.M.N. Appreciation Week — The Durham social scene is abuzz this week as the District Attorney Mike Nifong Appreciation Week (D.A.M.N. Appreciation Week) is well underway. As previously reported, a festive lunch honoring our own nationally notorious District Attorney, Michael Nifong, was on tap yesterday, arranged by well known Durham hostesses, Ms. Victoria Peterson and Ms. Jackie Wagstaff. Despite a plethora of unfortunate "previous engagements" and illnesses that prevented other local notables from attending, this reporter can confirm that a good time was had by both attendees!...

Matt Dees, Bull's Eye blog/News & Observer:
Breaking Duke lacrosse news! — Now that we've got your attention, just a reminder to all you Bryant University lacrosse fans that the team's coach, some guy named Mike Pressler, will host a press conference Friday. P.R. flacks from the Smithfield, R.I. school made clear what Pressler, the erstwhile coach of a certain local lax squad, will and won't discuss Friday. "Pressler will talk about the upcoming Bryant University men's lacrosse season and about his transition to campus. He will not speak about or answer questions regarding the Duke lacrosse legal case." ...

Eddie Timanus, USA Today:
Duke men's lacrosse takes field this weekend for first time since controversy — The scandal-plagued Duke men's lacrosse program that went from national championship contender to national debating topic enters the 2007 season as one of the sport's biggest question marks.

The Blue Devils finally take the field again this weekend for two home games, their first since the 2006 season was cut short last April. Duke takes on Dartmouth on Saturday and Denver on Sunday, and not even new coach John Danowski knows what to expect.

"I have no idea," Danowski told reporters on a teleconference Wednesday. "The reason I say that is because of the uniqueness of these circumstances."

Mary Katharine Ham, TownHall.org:
The ultimate Duke lacrosse player — There's another Duke lacrosse story, one you won't hear as much about as the one that involves a party, a stripper, and a rape that never happened.

There's another Duke lacrosse player, one you won't hear as much about as those accused of brutally assaulting an exotic dancer in early 2006 at a Durham house party. There's another Duke lacrosse legacy, one you won't hear as much about as the tainted and race-scarred one a corrupt D.A. left in his wake.

On February 9, 2006, Army Ranger Jimmy Regan died in northern Iraq when the vehicle he was riding in hit a roadside bomb. He was 26 years old.Four years earlier, before four tours in the war on terror-- two in Afghanistan and two in Iraq-- Regan had scored four goals in the 2002 ACC Championship lacrosse game to lead Duke to the crown...

John in Carolina:
A bit about lawsuits — If you’re going to bring a civil suit against someone who’s committed crimes against you, you want to make sure you don’t do anything with a civil suit that would interfere with a criminal prosecution. Something else: often with civil suits, waiting can have a big payoff...

John in Carolina:
Johnsville News: An appreciation — Early in the Hoax case, JN named Crystal Gail Mangum. I thought that was a mistake. I believe a rape accuser who goes to the police should be granted anonymity so long as the accuser doesn’t abuse what is really a privilege. After all, unlike police states, America is a country where we are supposed to have a right to face those who accuse us of crimes...

comment: Thank you, John for the very nice write up. "John in Carolina" is a gentlemanly counterweight to TJN. The Johnsville News first published the name of the false accuser, Crystal Gail Mangum, after a great deal of hesitation, on April 21, 2006. This case is certainly unique and Ms. Mangum's credibility and her allegations started unraveling very quickly in April. One early indication that something strange was going on was the report that Ms. Mangum never told her family about the incident. Her father learned she was connected to the Duke case from a reporter? The deterioration of her credibility picked up speed after Dan Abrams first showed the Duke lacrosse party photos on April 14th, 2006:
& photos

Dan AbramsDAN ABRAMS, MSNBC HOST: Coming up, I've been the first one to see the pictures the lawyers for the Duke lacrosse players say prove that their clients could not have raped anyone. The program about justice starts now.

Hi, everyone. First up on the docket, another ABRAMS REPORT exclusive. I have now seen all of the pictures that the attorneys representing the Duke lacrosse players say will help prove that no rape occurred at the of campus house. I also spoke with their expert who says he authenticated the sequence of the photos. All right. So let me just lay out for you what I saw.

The first were taken over a period of about two minutes, beginning at about midnight. The women, partially naked and dancing in the living room, surrounded on the three sides that we can see by men sitting on couches and chairs. The alleged victim is already missing one shoe, which is seen in a photo. Someone's watch in one of the pictures consistent with the time stamp on the camera....
p.s. John, we just noticed that Ruth Sheehan saw that she won a Johnsville News "Freedom of the Press" award. She seemed happy. If the likes of Tom Selleck, Bill Cosby, and Ben Affleck can accept their Razzies (Golden Raspberry Awards), then Ms. Sheehan can certainly accept her 'Freedom of the Press' award.

Michael Gaynor:
Duke (under Brodhead) failed Crisis Management 101 — A thoughtful Duke lacrosse parent was struck by the sharp difference in the way Jet Blue handled its recent weather-driven crisis as compared to the shameful way Duke University's administration (Richard Brodhead, President) mishandled Duke Case One (exposing itself in the process).

Duke lacrosse parent: "I just finished reading the public letter of apology to Jet Blue customers from CEO David Neeleman...The letter is short, direct and sincerely remorseful....Duke has behaved shamefully in this case. It faced probably the most difficult situation in its history, as did Jet Blue and J&J, and Duke spit the bit...

Forum topics of note:
Bill Anderson, LieStoppers:
I'm speaking on March 3 on the Duke Case, Maryland Libertarians in Dundalk — at the Squires Italian Restaurant in Dundalk, Maryland. My plans are to take in the lacrosse match Friday night in College Park between Duke and Maryland. The event is open to the public.
Cash Michaels pays a visit to the "cave."
Cash Michaels, TalkLeft:
Why am I at "The Cave?" — For starters, the place is just crawling, wall-to-wall, with intelligent, decent human beings who aren't in the business of trying to destroy people just because they have difference of opinion. Some of you folks are quickly turning TL into abc11tv.com 2, just because Jeralyn, in an effort to maintain some sense of fairness, gives some of you longer rope than you deserve. I'm only sorry that I have to climb into the grime with some of you just to defend myself and community. In fact, I don't like doing it, but I will when I have to.

At the Cave, i don't have that problem. I'm sure we don't all agree on everything there, but at least we treat each other with a good deal of respect, and I thank IMHO for setting that tone. the others have been simply great, and I appreciate them a great deal.

I find it fascinating how places like the Cave and OurHeartsWorld.com literally intimidate Duke Three supporters, as if they're suppose to rule every inch of the Internet. Pro-Duke Three blogsites out number "Let's let the courts decide" blogsites 10 to 1, and yet that one gets deep under your skin. That's sick. You people need doctors, specialists, in fact. I'm pretty certain that in your "normal" lives (however "normal' is defined in your neck of the woods), you don't do much or have accomplished much. This your life is centered here. Winning this battle means everything to you...

Anne Blythe, News & Observer:
Nifong's lawyer gets an extension — The State Bar has granted the lawyer representing Durham District Attorney Mike Nifong more time to respond to the accusations against the prosecutor. AnneLane Williamson, chairman of the Bar's Disciplinary Hearing Committee, granted a five-day extension, making the response due Feb. 28...The State Bar is scheduled to take up the matter in June.
John Stevenson, Herald-Sun: Date for Nifong's response now Feb. 28

La Shawn Barber:
Suspected Arrested in Durham for RapeJohn Ham in NC...
“By talking to the very people who rushed to judgment in March of 2006 — the infamous potbangers and irresponsible professors who pushed a concern for due process out of their minds in their zeal to make ideological points last year — the N&O comes to the nonsensical conclusion that fatigue over the Duke lacrosse case is the reason for the lack of outrage this time.
I almost snorted coffee out of my nose upon reading that gem. Fatigue, indeed. That’s BS...

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