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Sunday, June 3, 2007

Nifong/Mangum Hoax — June 3, 2007

Updated — today's items:

William Jockusch, Green Eggs & Bacon blog:
Letter to many Durham Police Officers -- The names of many important figures within the Durham Police Department can be found here. It is frankly a little late for any of them to start talking honestly about the case. But late, I think, would be better than never. So I'm sending many of them this letter ...

Dear Major Council,

The recent report of your Chief on the Duke Lacrosse Case, and the silence of the rest of the Department, have left many Americans asking: is there one officer in the Durham Police Department with the courage to tell the country the truth about what happened? ...
John in Carolina:
DPD's Sgt. Shelton & Cpl. Addison -- On May 31 Durham City Councilman Eugene Brown released a document: Questions concerning role of Durham Police Department in the Duke Lacrosse Case. The document is posted at Liestoppers.com. It’s a “must read” for every Durham citizen and anyone else who cares about justice in the Duke lacrosse case.

This post concerns two parts of Councilman Brown’s document which appear in separate sections. However, when placed side-by-side and examined, they're extraordinarily revealing as to what two DPD officers did that was right and what certain other DPD officers did that had to be wrong.

What's more, when examined side-by-side, the two sections of Brown's document lead to no other conclusion than that DPD went many days deliberately telling the public things it knew to be false, in the process slandering and libeling innocent citizens.
Max Wasserman, Cornell Sun:
My Time at the Lacrosse Final Four -- The stadium was full of Duke fans (scientific name maximus assholus) several groups of whom had the totally original idea of painting their chests with the letters “D-U-K-E” and an optional exclamation point. (The scientific name of these guys is maximus gay.) So the game started, things happened, goals were scored, and by the middle of the third period, Duke had a seemingly insurmountable seven-goal lead. I say “seemingly” because we all know what happened next. Everyone in the press box thought it was over. A cameraman for a Durham TV station actually left at this point, thinking it was over.

So then of course, Cornell manages to pull within one goal with time running out in the fourth. I’m so excited, I forgot about being neutral and started cheering for the Big Red. Give me a break; it’s not like I’m an important member of the Daily Sun or anything. The reporters next to me are taking bets on whether the game will go to overtime or not. The cameraman comes back and is in total shock of what the score now is. Well, then Cornell ties it up with seventeen seconds left, to seemingly send it to overtime. I again say “seemingly” because we all know what happened next: God died. I won’t say anything more about it, because I’m starting to get ferklempt again.
KC Johnson
Sunday Roundup -- [The AP’s Aaron Beard] commented on Collin Finnerty’s reception at Monday’s game against Johns Hopkins, where he “was mobbed by friends and well-wishers as he made his way through the stands.” Finnerty, unencumbered, explained, “They went through a tough time and had a tough year with everything in the case. It’s back where they belong, and I’m happy for them.” ...

Hostility to the NCAA’s correct decision to grant the Duke players an additional year of eligibility seems especially strong in Virginia. UVA coach Dom Starsia has denounced the move to every reporter who will listen, and last week Richmond Times-Dispatch columnist Paul Woody criticized it as well.
John in Carolina:
INNOCENT: Cotatti Country -- Catotti Country: Where you can try competence and character, but the appeals of race, gender and class are supreme....

Welcome to Catotti Country, where you’re judged by the color of your skin and your gender.

What about character and competence, you ask? Don’t they count for anything in Catotti Country?

Well sure, but not nearly as much as race and gender.

That’s why, in Catotti Country, if you’re setting up a committee to investigate a police department that a distinguished attorney recently said very likely committed crimes during an investigation headed by a DA the Attorney General publicly said was a “rogue” DA, you don’t go looking for the most qualified people to serve on the committee. Just imagine what could happen if you did that.
Another newspaper ad praises Duke lacrosse team -- For the second time in less than a week, a Duke University graduate has bought a newspaper advertisement praising the Duke lacrosse team.

Sunday's full-page ad is to appear in the New York Times, Washington Post, The Raleigh News & Observer, and Durham Herald-Sun, according to a news release. The ad is also to run in Monday's Wall Street Journal and a pair of lacrosse magazines.

The $400,000 advertisements, paid for by an anonymous Oklahoma oil businessman who graduated from Duke, praise the Duke lacrosse players and their families for "standing tall during extraordinarily difficult circumstances over the past 15 months." ...
LieStoppers forum -- The Oklahoma oil buisnessman must be Aubrey McClendon, Trinity '81 .He is the CEO of Chesapeake Energy , A NYSE publicly traded oil and gas company . He is listed in the most recent Forbes wealthiest americans as having a net worth of 6 billion . He has been a supporter of Duke and has donated at least 15 million in the past several years . He is considered conservative in his views and is exactly the kind of alumni donor the Board of Trustees do not want to piss off

TalkLeft: Another Newspaper Ad Praises Duke Lacrosse Team

There, but BSquared blog: Duke Lacrosse Ad -- Today, The Times had a full page ad paid for by the Duke lacrosse booster club basically saying to give the Duke lacrosse team a standing ovtion for being so great. Let me think a minute. Uh...No. No thanks.

Collectively they had a 3.4 GPA and a 100% graduation rate. Very nice. And white privelege and male privilelge and private school privelege and god knows what else. Lacrosse skills, clearly. OK. That's important. I played lacrosse. But at a leftist pinko school.

The fact that this ad appeared in the New York Times just goes to show that once again, money can't buy class. It's too bad these "poor" "innocent" boys had to stand up and crow about themselves and ask everyone to join in. Talk about low self-esteem. Just what is that expensive school teaching anyway?
John Stevenson, Herald Sun
Nifong employs advice policy -- Durham District Attorney Mike Nifong says he's moved to prevent misunderstandings among police, prosecutors and criminal defendants like one that recently got a first-degree murder suspect off the hook and threatened to spark major controversy in the Bull City's corridors of justice.

Under a policy launched last month, law enforcement officers should seek legal advice only from prosecutors who have intimate knowledge of any given case.

"You can't just go to the first assistant DA who is available," Nifong said of police officers and sheriff's deputies. "You have to go to an assistant DA who has some authority in the case."

The policy also requires documenting any discussions that occur....
Patrick Stevens, Washington Times
Blog: Assessing the Duke ruling -- It's been a few days since the NCAA granted Duke's request to re-instate a year of eligibility for 33 non-seniors who played for the men's lacrosse team in 2006 when its season was cut short by rape accusations.
The ruling prompted plenty of head-scratching and more in the tight-knit lacrosse world, and for good reason. It was an unusual step for an organization that usually moves slower than a tortoise, it could help keep a championship-caliber team intact (more on that later) and it comes off as a reward for poor decision-making (except for Duke's 2006 seniors, who are simply out of luck).

There is a target worthy of frustration, but it's not the players and not coach John Danowski. After all, who can blame a coach for saying yes to getting up to five All-Americans back, or to players for getting an extra year in college. News flash: Durham isn't the greatest college town, but a few grad school classes sure beats Wall Street...

There are plenty of basic housekeeping issues that will keep this in flux. How many guys want to come back, since some played sparingly and might not want another season of sitting the bench? Who can secure housing on short notice? ...
LieStoppers blog:
Video: CSTV interview with John and Matt Danowski
Ray Gronberg, Herald-Sun
Critic of Nifong looks to force his ouster -- A critic of District Attorney Mike Nifong intends to ask the state Court of Appeals to force Durham's senior judge to act on her petition calling for the prosecutor's removal from office.

Beth Brewer said Friday that her attorney has prepared a motion asking the appeals court to issue a "writ of mandamus" to Superior Court Judge Orlando Hudson.

Such writs are an order to administrators or lower-court judges that compels them to perform duties required by law.

Brewer contends that Hudson has improperly failed to act on the petition she filed under a state law governing the mid-term removal of a district attorney for official misconduct. The statute directs the county's senior judge to review and act on a petition within 30 days of receiving it.

The statute allows the judge to suspend a district attorney if there's probable cause to believe charges of misconduct are true, and to remove a prosecutor from office if after a hearing he or she determines the charges are true.

Hudson has refused to go through with that process, despite Brewer's petition. He has said that local hearings would duplicate the N.C. State Bar disciplinary proceeding Nifong faces over charges he withheld exculpatory evidence and made a series of improper out-of-court statements in the lacrosse case.

Brewer said she plans to file the Court of Appeals motion after Nifong's June 12 ethics trial...
Jim Wise, Newsobserver
Lacrosse panel taking shape -- The City Council on Friday appointed a chairman and four members of a committee to investigate the Police Department's handling of the Duke lacrosse case...

Council members Mike Woodard and Thomas Stith expressed some discomfort with setting quotas, but members Diane Catotti and Howard Clement said that, because of the racial and gender issues the case involved, parity on the committee is important...
Ray Gronberg, Herald Sun
City Council names first five investigators to lacrosse case panel -- City Council members have named five of the 12 people who will investigate how Durham police and District Attorney Mike Nifong handled the Duke lacrosse case, and expect to appoint the rest by June 8.

Friday's decision ratified Mayor Bill Bell's recommendation that a former N.C. Supreme Court justice, Durham native Willis Whichard, chair the investigating committee. Council members also agreed to the plan Bell and Whichard drafted for the committee....

Since the initial group of appointees includes four white men and a black woman -- Norris -- officials conceded the desire for balance would complicate the remainder of the appointments. Bell said later that compromises might be necessary.

"We might not hit the diversity goal," he said. "We might not hit the [stipulation] that you have four criminal defense people. But we're trying."

The demand for diversity came from Councilwoman Diane Catotti who, last week, was the only council member to vote against launching the investigation. She said Friday that given the initial appointments, the remainder of the slate should include two white women, three black women and two black men, thus leaving the panel 50 percent black and 50 percent female.
Jon Ham, Right Angles blog:
The James Watt approach in Durham -- Some race-obsessed Durham City Council members want strict diversity on the panel it is forming to look into the Durham Police Department’s role in the Duke lacrosse case investigation...

This reminded me of what former Reagan Interior Department Secretary James Watt said almost 25 years ago that got him fired:
He made the most odious comment of his career in defense of his widely criticized decision to authorize the sale of more than 1 billion tons of coal from federal lands in Wyoming. He argued that he was immune to criticism because members of his coal-advisory panel included “a black … a woman, two Jews, and a cripple.”
John in Carolina: INNOCENT: Catotti Country (Post 2)
KC Johnson:
Only in Durham -- The Durham City Council voted yesterday to approve an investigation of the police department’s conduct in the lacrosse case. Chairman Willis Whichard will be joined by four police chiefs, three of whom are white males; the fourth is a black female...

For instance, this inquiry desperately needs to include the perspective of defense lawyers. The North Carolina Bar website does not contain a demographic breakdown of its members, but, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 67 percent of lawyers in the United States are male, and just under 90 percent of the nation’s attorneys are white. Assuming that North Carolina’s breakdown is fairly similar to the national average, that would mean that a majority of the defense lawyers in the state are white males.

An ideal person for this commission, of course, would be Jim Coleman; and North Carolina obviously has many first-rate female or African-American attorneys. But, as City Councilman Mike Woodard noted, “I want us to find the best seven people we can.” With that as a goal, does it really make sense for Durham to eliminate the majority of the state’s attorneys simply because they are white and male?
Green Eggs & Bacon blog:
A Good Quota -- Mr. Johnson has complained about the quota system. For once, I think he is wrong. In general I agree with Mr. Johnson that quotas are a bad idea. But what is this committee going to do? If it is honest, it is going to tell Durham, which is half black, and half female, that the police engaged in highly questionable conduct to pander to its black and female voters. I think it is crucial that the committee's report be believed. And judging by the history of this, I think Durham's black population will be much more likely to believe the committee's report if there are a lot of black people on the committee...
John in Carolina
INNOCENT: Neff Misspeaks (Post 4) -- Dear Joe,

Regarding Anons calling attention to bloggers' and journalists' errors, I want to tell you why I believe it’s OK for Anons to point out our errors. I hope doing that will persuade you to correct what you said to your fellow journalists and others at the Press Club...I hope you understand my position. I'll keep what the Quakers call "the good hope" that you'll come to agree with it...
The Brogan Survey blog:
North Carolinians Support Disbarring Nifong, Brogan Survey Says -- According to the Brogan Survey results, 49.2 % of North Carolinians support disbarring Mike Nifong, prosecutor of the Duke Lacrosse case.

The case certainly raised eyebrows and called North Carolina's justice system into question...

Results showed that 64.6% of respondents felt the justice system "usually gets it right" while 22% felt it "usually gets it wrong". What is particularly interesting is that many more Caucasians answered "usually gets it right" (71%) than African Americans (50.7%).

30.9% of African Americans answered "usually gets it wrong" as compared to only 19% of Caucasians responding that way...
Michael Gaynor:
Duke case: Deplorable Duke still deplorable -- When the rest of the mainstream media had it so very wrong, Stuart Taylor, America's top legal commentator, wrote in National Journal: "Something is rotten at Duke, as at many universities. I don't think it has much to do with lacrosse." ...

Duke has not repented. Instead, it settled the Dowd punitive grading suit under a confidentiality agreement and scheduled Professor Curtis to teach this coming fall...

Duke needs to see the light, do what is right, and apologize, instead of buying silence and going back to business as usual.

I don't expect that during the presidency of Richard Brodhead.

I urge Duke donors to time and condition their donations wisely, so that Duke becomes the place they want it to be, instead of a crazed politically correct enclave where truth and fairness do not matter as much as the preferred political agenda..
Hondo, Christian Conservatives blog:
aftermath of the duke lacrosse case -- I am sickened and frightened by how eagerly the liberaliars on the Duke faculty and the liberaliars of the drive-by media conspired to ruin the lives of a group of innocent college kids, based purely on their skin color and the pathological need of the left to advance their twisted ideology. The worst part of the whole mess is that nobody has suffered the slightest punishment for their role in persecuting these kids...
Woody, Richmond Times-Dispatch:
NCAA took wrong stance in Duke case -- No one disputes that the 2006 season was unusual and difficult for the Duke men's lacrosse team. Rape and kidnapping allegations against three players roiled the program, the school and the college lacrosse world. The charges, stemming from a team gathering March 13, 2006, were false.

Poor judgment by District Attorney Mike Nifong caused the players, David Evans, Reade Seligmann and Collin Finnerty, and their families great anguish.

Certainly those players, who face enormous legal bills, should consider financial redress from their accuser and Nifong.

But none of this means the other members of the team deserve an extra year of college eligibility...
Mark, The SportsBiz blog:
It's Not About the Truth -- I've just finished reading a book I mentioned earlier about the Duke lacrosse case, entitled It's Not About the Truth written by Sports Illustrated writer Don Yeager with former Duke lacrosse coach Mike Pressler. Simply put, this will be the definitive contemporary history of the Duke lacrosse case. It is simply but dramatically told...

most of Brodhead's actions in this matter are mysteries - the man was in so far over his head it's almost sad really. He should never have left his safe, secure post as a dean at Yale - he's clearly not cut out for this job. The closing letter from Janet Pressler, Mike's teenage daughter, to Brodhead, eloquently sums up not only her or her family's pain but Brodhead's ineptitude.

If you have any interest inthe Duke at all, I strongly suggest you buythis book...
Air Bud Kenneled in Connection to Duke Lacrosse Rape Case, Admits to Drinking -- In a dramatic turn of events yesterday, the year long Duke Lacrosse Scandal took an unexpected and unpredicted turn. While the national media and much of greater U.S. society have slowly subsided away from their previous fiery and vehement views, continuing inquiries have persisted in overturning stones in what investigators consider, "an on-going analysis"...

According to Durham Police, the pooch has been pin-pointed to the location, by more than one witness, and Bud himself admitted to police during a questioning session, that he, "knew Crystal Gail Mangum owned a little honey of a cocker spaniel." Bud's lawyer, Timmy Miller, claims that those statements were made under duress and taken out of context, citing that Durham's Finest had coerced their confession out of the auburn-colored dog...

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