Updated - today's items:
Forum topics of note:
LieStoppers: REALITY TIME -- THE STRAIGHT DOPE ON THE FARCE, This Case Must Be Dismissed By Next Week
LieStoppers: Why Nifong was downplaying DNA in March, Before the results were in? -- This is not a case of an overzealous prosecutor. This is the case of a criminal conspiracy that was hatched by Nifong, the Durham police, and Linwood Wilson to frame the lacrosse players...
LieStoppers: When might SP make an annoucement?
TalkLeft: Mistake in Defense Strategy?
TalkLeft: Who is wrong, Bill Anderson or Ed Bradley?
Jeff Barker, Baltimore-Sun:
Optimism creeps in for Duke parents -- Families of accused hope charges to be dismissed soon -- For Duke University men's lacrosse parents, this season's games are a little less meaningful, the tailgates a little more somber.
With three former players still accused of sexual assault, there are more solemn concerns than winning games. "Let's have those three boys get exonerated. That's the only win that really matters," said Patricia Dowd of Northport, N.Y., whose son, Kyle, played for Duke last year but is not among the players charged.
A year after charges were filed, Duke parents are cautiously allowing themselves to believe they will soon get their wish. With the North Carolina attorney general's office about to complete its investigation, parents say they have reason to expect that charges against Bethesda's David Evans and former teammates Collin Finnerty and Reade Seligmann will be dropped by prosecutors within the next few weeks. "That's what we've been hearing," said Sally Fogarty of Chevy Chase, whose son, Gibbs, is a sophomore Duke player...
LieStoppers forum: Duke Lacrosse Moms and Dads, Evans and Others at Georgetown Game
---------Bart Jones, Newsday:
Accused Duke lacrosse player lands at Chaminade -- Collin Finnerty, one of three former lacrosse players accused in the Duke University sex assault case, has a new part-time endeavor -- he's an assistant coach of the Chaminade High School varsity lacrosse team.
Finnerty started the volunteer job at his alma mater a few weeks ago after receiving an invitation from the head coach, said his father, Kevin Finnerty. The season officially began Tuesday with a win.
"Quite honestly, he enjoys it," said Kevin Finnerty, of Garden City. "He's definitely connected to the school. I think the kids look up to him." ...
TalkLeft: Finnerty Coaching at Chaminade
---------William L. Anderson:
Michael B. Nifong and the Lies of the State -- According to the pundits, the time is coming that prosecutors finally drop the remaining charges of the Duke Non-Rape, Non-Kidnapping, and Non-Sexual assault case. Perhaps that is the case, but three young men, Reade Seligmann, Collin Finnerty, and David Evans, have lived with these false charges for 11 months, so the question really should not be "When will the charges be dropped?" Instead, it should be, "Why were they filed in the first place?"
While attending the Austrian Scholars Conference a couple of weeks ago, I found myself holding a number of impromptu sessions with people interested in the case. During one session, a woman asked me if there was not a possibility that the three men really were guilty. My answer to her did not seem to convince her, as she seemed to be of the belief that if one is charged by the state, such action automatically confers guilt...
One also would think that police and prosecutors, when confronted by the March 16 picture of Mangum, would stop alleging that she had been beaten and strangled. Yet, all of the statements made by Nifong and the police came after March 16. The picture to the right is one of Nifong demonstrating to an MSNBC television audience on March 30, 2006, how the young men "strangled" Mangum.
Please do not take my words that these things are bogus. The following comes from Kathleen Eckelt, who has been examining rape victims as an expert nurse investigator for more than two decades.
On the surface, it looks like a photograph of a normal, NON-INJURED female. Just looking at it, I'd say this is not the face of someone who has been recently beaten. Let me explain why...Yet, not only did they [Nifong/Durham police] hide evidence, something that came to light at the "tipping point" hearing on December 15, 2006, but they also faked evidence in their reports, claiming that Mangum had injuries that clearly she did not have. Because police reports are considered evidence in the investigation of a crime, we have a number of instances in which police wrote false statements in their reports, which is no different than "planting evidence" at the scene of the crime.
We are dealing with people who apparently were willing to stop at nothing to frame three young men of a "crime" that never happened. Today, the special prosecutors, James Coman and Mary Winstead, and their boss, Roy Cooper, still continue the fiction that Crystal Gail Mangum was "kidnapped" and "sexually assaulted."...
Liestoppers [see comments]: Nifong Explains The Chokehold
LieStoppers forum: Michael B. Nifong and the Lies of the State
-------Nate Freeman, Duke Chronicle:
Reps: CCI lacked undergrad input -- Several students who were involved in the creation of the Campus Culture Initiative said this week they were disappointed by the lack of student input integrated into the final report. According to the CCI report, Steering Committee members met with 20 student groups between Aug. 30 and Dec. 7.
Leaders of some student organizations and student members of the CCI committee said, however, that the handling of these meetings restricted student input from reaching the report, which was released Feb. 27.
CCI committee members communicated with students through other efforts-such as a town hall meeting Oct. 25 and various one-on-one communications-but some student leaders said the committee failed to reach out to the organizations that could be directly affected by the report's proposed recommendations...
The Times' Party Line? -- Basic human decency—if not a desire to uphold journalistic integrity—would suggest that a news division with such a record would issue some sort of mea culpa, an admission that the Times got the story horribly wrong. Yet, incredibly, [Duff] Wilson remains on the story. Just like [Selena] Roberts, then, he’s in a position to end the case by maintaining the Times party line while also minimizing his earlier journalistic failures.
It’s naïve, I suppose, to expect a paper that has been so unfair in its coverage to date would change its approach now. Given what we saw Sunday from Roberts, Times readers should dread what we will see from Wilson if and when charges are dismissed.
--------John in Carolina:
Sheehan's opportunity -- A year ago today Raleigh News & Observer news columnist Ruth Sheehan wrote a column (“Team’s Silence is Sickening”) attacking 46 Duke students for doing nothing more than following the advice of their parents and attorneys. Even worse, Sheehan told N&O readers the players were guilty of terrible crimes...
She should apologize to the students, their families, Coach Pressler and his wife and young children. An apology is also owed her readers.
If Sheehan does all of that, she will have made a major contribution to correcting some of the wrongs that have been committed against so many innocent people, most especially David Evans, Collin Finnerty and Reade Seligmann.
She will have done what she often tells readers she wants her three young sons to do: the right thing.
Duke case: Congratulations, Senator Obama -- Recently, Senator Obama quietly, but clearly, supported the calls for a federal investigation of possible violation of the constitutional rights of the Duke Three (Reade Seligmann, Collin Finnety and David Evans). Not quite a Sister Souljah moment, but a step in that direction.
Like another former president of the Harvard Law Review (Susan Estrich), it took plenty of time (but not as much as it took Ms. Estrich) for Senator Obama to publicly question the propriety of the prosecution in the Duke case. But it appears that Senator Obama is the first presidential hopeful to do so (certainly the first with a noteworthy showing in the polls).
A federal investigation into the handling of the Duke case should have been commenced long ago....
Obama backs federal probe of Nifong -- U.S. Senator and presidential candidate Barack Obama this month endorsed the concept of a federal inquiry into District Attorney Mike Nifong's handling of the Duke lacrosse sex offense case, and he continues to monitor other proceedings against Nifong, his office said Monday.
In a March 5 letter to a constituent, Obama, a first-term Senate Democrat, said an independent federal inquiry "is needed, and I will be following its progress closely." A copy of the letter was provided to The Herald-Sun Monday by Obama's Washington office. It was written roughly three weeks after the Illinois senator announced a bid for the Democratic presidential nomination.
The contents of the private letter were first revealed by ABC News on Sunday.
However, there have been no media reports that Obama ever publicly called for a federal probe into Nifong's conduct. The senator's press secretary, Ben LaBolt, declined Monday to field questions about whether political grandstanding might have caused the letter's appearance in a national media report two days ago...comment: More journalistic jackassery by Stevenson. The Obama letter was first revealed by LieStoppers.
--------Patrick Kelley, Pagan Temple blog:
The Politics Of Silence -- Barak Obama recently responded to a question about the North Carolina, Duke University, LaCrosse team rape case charges by asserting that Mike Nifong, the prosecutor of the case, should be investigated for a variety of alleged offenses, notably the purposeful withholding of potentially exculpatory evidence in the case. Obama said this in response to a question from the forums of Liestoppers, who have a blog which I have now placed on the blogroll. You can access the forums from the blog.
My question is, where the hell is John Edwards in this? He of all presidential candidates, democrat or republican, should be especially interested in the case developments as, after all, he is from North Carolina. I linked to his web-site and to his issues page here, which is amusingly short-half a screen of blank page...