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Saturday, March 3, 2007

Duke/Nifong Hoax: Day #319

Updated - today's items:

Counting the hoax days as of March 3, 2007:

It has been 355 days days since the Duke men's lacrosse team held a party where they hired two "strippers" to perform. The party started on March 13th, 2006, while the players were on spring break. Crystal Gail Mangum, one of the "strippers," made her initial false allegations of rape, kidnapping, robbery, and sexual assault on March 14th.

It has been 345 days since 46 members of the Duke lacrosse team went to the Durham police crime lab , on March 23rd, to submit DNA samples and have their pictures taken for an improper identification process.

It has been 319 days since Reade Seligmann and Collin Finnerty were wrongly arrested on April 18th, 2006.

It has been 292 days since David Evans was wrongly arrested on May 15, 2006, the day after he graduated from Duke University.

It has been 197 days since the lacrosse case was officially designated as "exceptional," on August 18th. Superior Court Judge Osmond Smith was assigned to oversee what some predicted might be the longest criminal proceeding in Durham history.

It has been 116 days since Mike Nifong was elected to a four-year term as district attorney, on November 7th. He defeated write-in candidate, Steve Monks, and Lewis Cheek who did not actively campaign.

It has been 86 days since Congressman Walter B. Jones (R-NC) sent a letter to U.S. Attorney General Alberto Gonzales requesting an inquiry into Durham County, North Carolina District Attorney Mike Nifong’s prosecution of three Duke University student accused of an alleged sexual attack. The letter was sent on December 7, 2006 and Rep. Jones made his announcement regarding the letter on Dec. 12th.

It has been 71 days since Mike Nifong dropped the rape charges against the David Evans, Collin Finnerty, and Reade Seligmann on Dec. 22nd.

It has been 65 days since the North Carolina State Bar Association filed an ethics complaint against Mike Nifong, on December 28, 2006.

It has been 60 days since Mike Nifong was sworn in at a private ceremony for a four year term as Durham District Attorney, on Jan 2, 2007.

It has been 49 days since North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper announced that his office would be taking over the Duke case.

There are 65 days until the next scheduled court hearing on the Duke case, currently set for May 7th.

Gary Lambrecht, Baltimore-Sun:
Duke overpowers Terps Devils' - Danowski matches career high with 6 goals and adds assist — Three games into its season of rebirth, the third-ranked Duke men's lacrosse team is a talented, hungry-looking bunch, starting with outstanding senior attackman Matt Danowski. Just ask the No. 5 Maryland Terrapins.

Last night at Byrd Stadium, before a crowd of 5,283 who came to see Duke's first road game since the Blue Devils' 2006 season was aborted after three players were charged with raping an exotic dancer at a team party, it was all Duke and Danowski.

Danowski matched his career-high with six goals and an added an assist, all in the first three quarters, as Duke took command early and rolled to a 14-7 victory. The Blue Devils improved to 3-0. . .
Don Markus, Baltimore Sun:
Intense rivalry, little hostility — Trip to Univ. of Maryland brings return to normality for Duke lacrosse - It wasn't the early lead the third-ranked Blue Devils took in their 14-7 rout of the No. 5 Terps that quieted the Maryland contingent or brought the rather boisterous group of Duke fans, friends and family members out of their seats.

The celebration of a new season, and a fresh start, began when Duke opened at home in Durham, N.C., with two victories last weekend. There are other victories that aren't measured on the scoreboard.

"I think every game is a big game for them," said Steve Schroeder, who, along with his wife, Pam, drove from their home in Summit, N.J., to watch their son Rob, a junior reserve goalie. . .

[Dave] Evans, who was a senior last year, spoke to the Blue Devils in their dressing room before the game.

"It was really, really motivational for us," said senior attackman Matt Danowski, who matched his career high with six goals. "He told us to take advantage of this, to not come off any shift without leaving it all out there. He misses being out here for us." . . .
Gary Lambrecht, Baltimore-Sun:
Old hand gives Duke new face in lacrosse — Despite graduating, Gilman's Douglas stayed to fill void — With his degree in hand and job offers on the table, Ed Douglas could have let go of his passionate hobby and started the next phase of his life. But walking away from Duke lacrosse never struck Douglas as the right path to take. . .

"You don't realize how much you value an experience like this until it's taken away from you," said Douglas of Baltimore, who played defensive midfielder in 2005, when Duke made its first appearance in the NCAA title game. . .

Douglas, 23, who made the team as a walk-on in his sophomore year, has become a voice for the program, as the school awaits the legal outcome surrounding former players David Evans of Bethesda, Collin Finnerty and Reade Seligmann. Rape charges against them were dropped in December, but they remain charged with kidnapping and sexual offense.

Douglas stayed in Durham, N.C., throughout the summer - working out with teammates to strengthen unity, talking with administrators about ways to improve the program's tarnished image, and ultimately doing the bulk of the work that produced a new mission statement for Duke lacrosse. He became a co-captain with a nearly unanimous players' vote. . .
Kevin Bruffy,The Lantern, Ohio State Univ.: Duke proves value of teammates — Faced with insufferable media scrutiny 11 months ago, the team stayed together and rallied behind their three accused teammates, declaring their innocence to anyone who would listen. . .

LieStoppers forum: Duke vs. Maryland, Live Thread

KC Johnson:
One of ElevenThe H-S editorial reflects Nifong’s new talking points on the DNA: he handed over the evidence as he was supposed to do, and the only reason the defense even knew about the incomplete Meehan report (which contained no mention of the many other unidentified male DNA in the rape kit) was because Nifong supplied the evidence. As Nifong bizarrely, and inarticulately, explained in his December 28 letter to the bar, the defense “complaint can be summed up as, ‘We know they did not give it to us because they gave it to us.’”

This argument forms one of the eleven separate, and often mutually contradictory, explanations that Nifong has given for his failure to turn over the DNA evidence. It rests on a basic assumption: that even if Nifong were not compelled to turn over a complete report under the law (an incorrect assumption), he willingly turned over to the defense the underlying data regarding Meehan’s tests, and so the defense could have discovered Meehan’s withheld results by spending sufficient time studying the “clearly understood” data. . .

John Stevenson, Herald-Sun:
Nifong's reply to charges harks back — USA Today quoted Nifong on March 30, 2006, as saying that if defense lawyers wanted to shift the case out of Durham because of extensive publicity, they wouldn't have much luck.

"After all the media that have been here this week, we'd have to move it to China," Nifong told the newspaper, referring to the perceived impossibility of receiving a fair trial anywhere in the United States. . .

But Nifong, responding to allegations that could cost him his law license, told the State Bar in his response Wednesday he "did not fully understand the extent of the national media interest in this particular investigation" when he granted numerous interviews between March 27 and April 3 of last year.

He added that he "did not comprehend the effect [his] statements may have on any matters related to the case." One well-known Durham lawyer, asking not to be identified, described the apparent inconsistency Friday as "devastating" for Nifong. . .
Forum topics of note:
LieStoppers: William L. Anderson - My March 3 to the Maryland Libertarians, Lively session at Libertarian meeting

LieStoppers: Unknown males..., Non-probative? - What went on with the [DNA] swabbing of Crystal's male "friends"?

LieStoppers: The "23 Minutes" What Happen?, drive from house to Kroger's - I did not realize we are missing 23 minutes from the time Crystal leaves Buchanan and arrives at Kroger's, a 5 minute drive at the most. . . comment: Good question. TJN was wondering about that too.

Google map - Duke Lacrosse House to Kroger supermarket

Joan Foster & Baldo, LieStoppers:
How do we solve a problem like Mike Nifong

How do we solve a problem like Mike Nifong
Now that he's got the whole world looking in?
Do we say that he's A-ok?
We do these things everyday?
We allow ANYTHING to get the State a win? ...

How do we solve a problem like Mike Nifong?
He says he can't remember where he was!
Should we assert these are not "lies"
Like Crystal, he's traumatized!
So of course his memory's morphing into fuzz! ...

John in Carolina:
Truth, Readers & The N & O — Raleigh News & Observer managing editor John Drescher recently said:
[In] the first week of the [Duke lacrosse] story, our reporting was hampered by the unwillingness of the Duke players, their parents and their lawyers to speak to us.
But Drescher’s never explained just why he thinks the players, their parents and the defense attorneys are responsible for the N&O’s decision to repeatedly tell readers Crystal Mangum was the victim. Or why they’re responsible for the N&O’s decision to withhold news of the players’ extensive cooperation with police and instead promulgate the “wall of solidarity” falsehood? . . .
Robyn Wiegman John in Carolina:
Duke Prof Wiegman loses — By my friend's standards, I've won a few rounds with Duke's Director of Women's Studies professor Robyn Wiegman.

Wiegman, who usually is very quick to give her opinions and correct others, has twice said nothing in response to email inquiries and information I sent her, first in October and then in a copy in November.

I think Wiegman's silence means, like my friend says, I've made my points and silence is all I'll get. So I've won. . .
TJN: Policing Vile Metaphors & Idiot Professors - Duke Professor Robyn Wiegman unilaterally banned the use of the phrase "tarred and feathered" on the Duke campus. Still shaking head over that absurdity.

comment: Of course, Wiegman did not have a problem when G88 member Wahneema Lubiano used the old "tarred and feathered" idiom during the 'Shut up and Teach' "Gang of 88" enabling forum.
John in Carolina:
Addison Series #4 - "They call it 'squeezing' " — On Jan. 12 of this year the Raleigh N&O reported DA Mike Nifong’s office had again said the false accuser had changed her story of what happened the night of March 13/14 . . .

Coleman’s call for a criminal investigation of DA Nifong and his staff has so far received little attention. I think that’s because so much attention is being paid to State Bar action against Nifong which will likely lead to his disbarment. Also, the special prosecutors are reviewing the original “case” (really a frame-up) and the public is waiting on that review. . .

So Addison will be asked, for example, why he told the public the players weren’t cooperating with police when they were. Addison will be talking to people, almost all of whom have police and/or criminal investigative backgrounds. They know how exceptionally cooperative the players were compared to most suspects they’ve dealt with. They know Addison knows. He’s a veteran officer, after all. And worst of all for Addison, he knows they know he knew. . .

Michael Gaynor:
Duke case: Nifong subordinates, speak; NC, look to an Arizona case - Dr. Anderson's concern that Mr. Nifong might not be disbarred (as The Herald-Sun hopes) is reasonable, not because Mr. Nifong has not behaved outrageously, but because North Carolina will be lenient.

I suggest that the North Carolina authorities look to the decision of the Arizona Supreme Court in the disciplinary proceeding against Thomas J. Zawada.

The Arizona Supreme Court on its own initiative reviewed "to determine whether the Disciplinary Commission's recommended sanctions of prosecuting attorney Thomas J. Zawada were adequate in light of the objectives of lawyer discipline" and held "they were not.

Unrelated to hoax, but Duke related & politically interesting -

Jeralyn Merritt, TalkLeft:
Giuliani's Son Admits Falling Out Over Judith Nathan — You gotta love kids. They are so honest. Andrew Giuliani, now a senior at Duke, spoke to a New York Times reporter the other day who was curious about his and his sister's absence from the campaign trail:
In a telephone interview yesterday, Andrew, a sophomore and member of the golf team at Duke University, acknowledged having had difficulties with Ms. Nathan, and said that he and his father had recently tried to reconcile after not speaking “for a decent amount of time.”

“There’s obviously a little problem that exists between me and his wife,” the younger Mr. Giuliani said. “And we’re trying to figure that out. But as of right now it’s not working as well as we would like.”
Does the thrice-married Giuliani think he's the teflon-man and all attacks on him will dissipate in honor of him being the 9/11 mayor? Surely, his 15 minutes of mayoral fame won't stretch that far. . .

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