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Thursday, June 28, 2007

Nifong/Mangum Hoax — June 28, 2007

"I will go to my grave being associated with this case." — Mike Nifong
Updated — today's items:

Aaron Beard, AP/Houston Chronicle:
Nifong a no-show at hearing to consider his removal from office -- He says he will resign Monday -- Disgraced prosecutor Mike Nifong didn't show up Thursday at a hearing to consider his immediate removal as Durham County district attorney, a position from which is has been suspended and already pledged to resign.

But Nifong, who was disbarred for his handling of the discredited Duke lacrosse rape case, told the attorney hired to prosecute his removal that he planned to resubmit his resignation Monday, making it effective immediately.

During a brief hearing, at which no one sat at the defendant's table, Superior Court Judge Orlando Hudson said he would reconvene Monday to either accept Nifong's new resignation or issue an order kicking him out of office.

"I'm not going to make a rush to judgment in a couple of days over Mr. Nifong. This case is going be resolved on Monday," Hudson said. "There is no defense for Mr. Nifong to these proceedings. So, you don't have to guess how this is going to turn out." ...

Special prosecutor Robert Zaytoun(l) confers with Judge Orlando Hudson at Nifong hearingAnne Blythe, N&O:
Nifong says he'll resign Monday -- Hudson said he would decide Monday whether to remove Nifong or accept his resignation...

Betty Tenn Lawrence, a lawyer for Brewer, this morning urged Hudson to oust Nifong and not allow him to resign.

But Hudson said was not sure whether Nifong had received official notice of today's hearing and thus was continuing the proceeding until Monday. Hudson said he wanted to make sure he followed the correct legal process...

Newsday: Duke DA Nifong to resign Monday
NBC17.com: Nifong No-Show At Hearing, Contempt Court Date Set

LS forum: Nifong Hearing 06-28-2007
LS forum: Nifongs Contempt Hearing
KC Johnson: Nifong Hearing
KC Johnson: Smith Sets Date

FreeRepublic: Nifong a no-show at removal hearing
Free Republic: Judge Finds Probable Cause Against Mike Nifong
TalkLeft: Judge Smith sets Nifong's contempt hearing date
Superior Court Judge W. Osmond Smith III a/k/a OzWRAL:
Judge Finds Probable Cause to Proceed With Nifong Contempt Charges -- The sole judge who presided over the Duke lacrosse case has found probable cause to proceed with criminal contempt charges against for former Durham County District Attorney Mike Nifong.

In the order issued Thursday, Durham County Superior Court Judge W. Osmond Smith III said he had found probable cause to believe Nifong "willfully and intentionally made false statements of material fact" during a hearing held last year. He set a court date for July 26.

Meanwhile, a hearing to determine whether the disbarred prosecutor should be removed from office was continued until 11 a.m. Monday, pending his resignation.

Wake County attorney Robert Zaytoun said Thursday morning he talked to Nifong, who indicated his intention to submit a letter of resignation to the governor on Monday. It would be effective immediately...

WRAL [video]
LieStoppers blog:
Smith Appoints Special Prosecutor -- and pursuant to its inherent authority, the Court, in its discretion, hereby appoints Charles M. Davis of the Franklin County Bar as Special Counsel to prosecute the pending action against Michael B. Nifong arising from the Order to Show Cause...

LieStoppers blog:
Upon motion of the defendants and on its own motion, the Court finds probable cause to believe that you should be held in criminal contempt of court for your willful behavior committed during the sitting of the Court in its immediate view specifically, that while appearing before the Court in your capacity as District Attorney in the prosecution of these actions, you willfully and intentionally made false statements of material fact to the Court on September 22, 2006 by representing to the Court that the May 12, 2006 report of Dr. Brian W. Meehan as provided to the defendants included all of the statements made by Dr. Meehan to you regarding the results of all examinations and tests conducted by DNA Security Inc. and that there was nothing else to provide; and in doing do, you thereby failed to disclose the existence of material exculpatory and impeachment evidence within your knowledge that the defendants were entitled to under our laws of discovery. This behavior is in violation N.C.G.S.5A-11(a)(2)...
Mike Nifong State Bar Ethics Hearing Depositions -- Depositions from witnesses in the North Carolina State Bar ethics hearing regarding former Durham District Attorney Mike Nifong's handling of the Duke lacrosse sexual assault investigation.

Benjamin Himan Deposition [217 pages]
May 8 deposition of Durham Police Investigator Benjamin Himan, the lead investigator of the Duke lacrosse case.

Mike Nifong Deposition (Part 1 of 2) [282 pages]
May 17 deposition of Durham County District Attorney Mike Nifong about his prosecution of the Duke lacrosse case. (Part 1 of 2)

Mike Nifong Deposition (Part 2 of 2)
May 17 deposition of Durham County District Attorney Mike Nifong about his prosecution of the Duke lacrosse case. (Part 2 of 2)

Brian Meehan Deposition [151 pages]
May 22 deposition of Dr. Brian Meehan, the director DNA Security Inc., a private laboratory hired to test DNA evidence in the Duke lacrosse case.

Linwood Wilson Deposition
May 23 deposition of Linwood Wilson, the head investigator for the Durham District Attorney's Office.

Mark Gottlieb Deposition
April 19 deposition of Durham Police Sgt. Mark Gottlieb, Duke lacrosse lead investigator Benjamin Himan's supervisor.

Michael Ripberger Deposition [28 pages]
April 19 deposition of Durham Police Lt. Michael Ripberger, Sgt. Mark Gottlieb's supervisor.
LS forum: Himan/Wilson/Ripberger depositions...

LieStoppers blog:
Betty Tenn Lawrence at the NC Institute for Constitutional Law
-- Liestoppers' Betty Tenn Lawrence appeared alongside Duke University Professor of Law James Coleman, NCCU Professor of Law Irving Joyner, Duke University Professor of Law Michael Tigar, and Nifong attorney David Freedman at yesterday's NC Institute for Constitutional Law CLE program entitled, "Prosecutorial Misconduct in Light of the Duke Lacrosse Case." A summary of Ms. Lawrence's presentation follows.
Hello. I am very proud to be here today, as a continuing legal education presenter in such great company, and especially proud to be asked to do so by the NC Institute for Constitutional Law. I have never been prouder in my life than I am to come to you today as Beth Brewer’s lawyer...
Anne Blythe, News & Observer:
Judge might fire Nifong -- Petition for ouster gets hearing today -- Mike Nifong could be officially out of a job today.

Whether or not the suspended district attorney is in the courtroom, Judge Orlando Hudson said late Wednesday that he would move ahead with a petition calling for Nifong's ouster.

Robert E. Zaytoun, a Raleigh lawyer, will prosecute the case for Hudson in a hearing scheduled for this morning, employing a rarely used process that allows judges to remove district attorneys whose misconduct has been prejudicial to the administration of justice.

Beth Brewer, a Durham resident, asked Hudson in February to remove Nifong from elected office. It was not until last week, after the N.C. State Bar ruled that the prosecutor should be stripped of his law license and disbarred for his handling of the Duke lacrosse case, that Hudson agreed to proceed.

Nifong had planned to stay in office until July 13, a timeline that sparked an outcry from his critics.

Hudson suspended Nifong with pay and asked the Durham County sheriff to confiscate the former prosecutor's keys and courthouse access card.

Until an official ouster, though, Nifong continues to draw his annual income of more than $133,000....
Nifong may be ouster no-show -- Former Durham District Attorney Mike Nifong isn't expected to fight an effort today to oust him permanently from office and immediately cut off his $111,646 state salary.

In fact, it's doubtful Nifong will even show up at the hearing, officials said Wednesday.

"It's my belief that he won't be here," said Superior Court Judge Orlando F. Hudson, who will preside. "He could show up, but I don't know. He's made no attempt to contact us or respond to us."

On Monday, a deputy sheriff tried to serve notice of the hearing at Nifong's house, but he wasn't there. His wife, Cy Gurney, wouldn't accept the paperwork, Hudson said. So the deputy posted the notice on Nifong's door.

Some legal observers suggested Wednesday that leaving the notice on a door was insufficient, since the law requires serving Nifong in person.

The same observers said the notices must be delivered at least 10 days before a scheduled hearing. Nifong's was left at his house three days in advance...
DA Jeff Hunt -  Henderson, Polk & Transylvania Counties, NCJohn Harbin, Times-News/blueridgenow.com:
Hunt: Nifong crossed the line -- District Attorney Jeff Hunt discussed his feelings about disbarred Durham County District Attorney Mike Nifong and the role of district attorneys in the judicial system Wednesday at a meeting of the Henderson County Republican Men's Club.

Hunt told members Nifong got into trouble by having an indictment issued in a case that should not have been prosecuted.

Nifong, who has been suspended as Durham County District Attorney for his handling of theDuke lacrosse rape case, was the first prosecutor to be disbarred since 1996. About three quarters of disbarments over the past decade came from financial misdeeds, such as taking money from a client or law firm.

"Nothing can fully correct the wrong for the Duke players," Hunt said. "The justice system has been bruised, but is still working." ...
Austin Criminal Defense Lawyer blog:
A Prosecutor's Take on Mike Nifong -- the short answer is that I guess he pretty much deserves whatever he gets...
Jeff Emanuel, FamilySecurityMatters.org:
The Lives of Others: Sacrificing the ‘great unwashed’ for political gain a hallmark of the political Left -- We are seeing brazen hubris and revolting amorality throughout American politics, but examples of blatant disregard for devastating individual lives, careers and reputations appears to be a specific, identifiable trait of the Left. -- Only a few days ago, after a year of pain, anger, and deceit, and the ruination of multiple innocent lives, justice was finally done in a North Carolina courtroom: Mike Nifong, the disgraced former District Attorney from Durham, was found to have committed “a clear case of intentional prosecutorial misconduct,” complete with “dishonesty, fraud, deceit and misrepresentation” in his prosecution of three innocent young men for rape, and was ruled ineligible to practice law in that state any longer.

The conclusion to this case was both correct and deserved. However, the case itself demonstrates a very dangerous and unfortunate characteristic shared by much of the political Left in this country – namely, the willingness to trade others’ lives for personal political gain, regardless of the circumstances involved or of the effect that such actions might have on the victims...
Letters to Herald-Sun:
Picked wrong side

Looks like Tony Madejczyk [Letter, June 21] is upset that he backed the wrong horse in Mike Nifong and Durham's agenda-driven race to railroad some innocent. rich, white males. He, like a few other twisted individuals, still blames the players.

Does anyone ever blame a rape victim for being raped? Then why blame this on the true victims?

Seething jealousy javascript:void(0)
Publish Postand envy eats at those who still blame the lacrosse players. These individuals were foaming at the mouth anticipating the mileage they could get out of saying to their left-winged, nut friends, "See, I told you those rich, white, privileged, male Duke students are bad."

Well, who looks like the fool now? I'm sorry that Madejczyk is so eaten up with envy that he cannot see the true victims in this fiasco.

However, I'm sure there is some politically correct "victim" class that will pop up soon.

Players started it

First, a quote: "Since when do you have to agree with people just to defend them from injustice?" (Quoted from "Bits & Pieces on Leadership.")

Second, I didn't invite the lacrosse players here, but they came and were well on their way to a victorious season. But, being the misguided, misdirected, (mostly) spoiled souls that they were, they chose to create havoc in a residential neighborhood, drinking away their parent's money and wasting more of it on a "stripper" to satisfy their sexual longings.

What they did started something Durham did not ask for. In doing so, they have created a monster, but I have not heard one of them apologize for what they started. And now they, their attorneys and their parents want to sue everyone in sight.

Now their former coach is trying to get rich by publishing a pile of trash and has the audacity of claiming his Yankee friends look at our state as a disgrace. If so, the problem lies with him as their former coach, their parents, their attorneys and ultimately the players.

I, like all other Durham citizens, are ready for these "Northern immigrants" to return to wherever they came from and never return. They will not be welcome. It is also hoped that Duke will quickly find a replacement for President Richard Brodhead.

But mostly, an apology from the players would do a world of good.

KC Johnson:
Nifong Deposition: Personal Issues -- Beyond specific issues related to the case, the Nifong deposition contained a number of intriguing personal revelations about the former DA. At various points during his two days of questioning, Nifong revealed himself to be:
  • a prosecutor who was at best indifferent to gathering all the evidence or even doing the basic of his job;
  • a figure who appears to believe that once a crime is charged, it is basically impossible to prove innocence;
  • a candidate who was flexible with his personal and campaign finance matters; and
  • a person who held deep grudges that he couldn’t conceal even with his career on the line...
Bull City Rising blog:
Durham PD search: Saunders; the head, Hodge? -- In case you missed it: in his Tuesday N&O column, Barry Saunders took an interesting spin on the Durham Police Department chief search:

"Hire Ron Hodge, cuz he can whoop his kid." . . .

If you buy into Barry Saunders' argument, Ron Hodge demonstrated leadership by righting whatever was wrong in his son's life, at the wrong end of a nightstick as it were. If that's the case, bully for him.

But at this point in Durham's history, we need a police chief who can demonstrate he's a leader on the job, too. Perhaps a full reckoning of his career and accomplishments in light of his co-finalists' will indeed show that man is Ron Hodge. Based on the incredible faux pas earlier this month, though, I'm not counting on it.
Thomas Lifson, AmericanThinker.com:
Mike Nifong, fugitive? -- WRAL television in Raleigh, NC is reporting that there is some doubt locally whether or not Mike Nifong will show up for his court hearing tomorrow.
A hearing to remove former Durham County District Attorney Mike Nifong from office is scheduled for Thursday, but the disbarred prosecutor might not show....
I realize it will never happen, but I cannot think of a segment I would rather see on America's Most Wanted, soliciting viewer's help in tracking down Mike Nifong, fugitive.

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