Friday, December 15, 2006

Atmosphere

The atmosphere for this hearing differed considerably from the October version. In light of the bombshell defense motions of the past couple of days—dealing with DNA and with suppression of the photo lineup—the room was filled to capacity by 8.35 for a 9.30 hearing.

The media contingent had expanded dramatically: the last hearing attracted the contingent of reporters from the N&O, the Duke Chronicle, and a Nifong scribe from the Herald-Sun, but no national correspondents.

The hearing room contained a number of other lacrosse players and their families, as well as several people from the Recall Nifong-Vote Cheek effort; Nifong, as he looked through his peripheral vision, got to see a row of lacrosse players. This turnout reflected the the balance of sentiment among anyone who has followed the case. A plurality of Durham residents, it appears, might have been willing to vote for Nifong, but only Victoria Peterson was willing to show up on his behalf.

The hearing opened with judge calling all attorneys into chambers. Linwood Wilson came late to the hearing. The hearing started around 10am—the preconference dealt with medical evidence from the accuser, with the judge ordering material to be handed over to both sides.

Susan Filan of MSNBC positioned herself behind Nifong’s table and eagerly chatted with his assistants.

Best line of the day went to Jim Cooney. Before the session started, defense gave material in a box to Nifong, who awkwardly attempted to joke about its being appropriate for the season. After Cooney explained the contents of the box, Nifong tried to joke again, “This has your fingerprints all over it.” Cooney’s clever response: “But does it have my DNA on it?” When Nifong, again half a step too slow, replied, “I’ll let you know,” Cooney, walking away, got the last word: “Just make sure we get it in writing.”

[Corrected last p’graph after getting information from those sitting nearer to the exchange.

60 comments:

GPrestonian said...

I cannot believe that Nifong had the low class to make a joke like that. What a tool.

But it did give Cooney a chance to score!

"“Maybe. Just make sure we get it in writing.” LOL!!

PS - Filan's a tool too.


KC, you've gone above and beyond - words cannot express the gratitude that we all have for your efforts.

Anonymous said...

Does Filan think it is okay to hold evidence back? Clear reversible error

Anonymous said...

When this is all over, the entire NC legal system that has oversight over this sham of a legal process should be indicted...especially those judges who have violated the boys cvivl rights to a speedy and fair trial.


FYI Filan is slightly less intelligent than Nifong.

Anonymous said...

THANK YOU KC!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Chicago writes:

I am amazed that Victoria Peterson continues to show up for Nifong. She will stop at nothing to promote her agenda. What is hilarious is that she also thought that Michael Peterson was innocent.

Anonymous said...

Chicago writes:

Deep down, do you think any of the assistants on Nifong's side of the table who work under him are ashamed and embarassed to be sitting next to him and on his team? I mean, do you think they are just working there because they have bills to pay and need to keep their position until they find something better? How humiliating. I almost feel sorry for them, especially if they are just too afraid to stand up to him for fear of being unemployed. And I would not consider them the most employable people right now anyway. Most legal circles will likely laugh at them when they get wind of them having worked with Nifong for Durham County.

I personably would indeed like to find a closet to hide in for weeks if I had to sit next to Nifong today and act like a member of his gang.

theman said...

When this case is over 3 guys will be in jail, meeting big bad John.

bill anderson said...

So, Yolanda now is calling for prison rape. That simply is sick. Yolanda, give me proof of rape other than CGM said she was raped. If she told the truth regarding the rape, why did she lie regarding sex with other men?

By the way, you still have not answered my question about the Scottsboro Boys. Victoria Price said she was raped, even though medical evidence did not support her claims (as medical evidence does not support CGM's claims). Are you declaring that Price was telling the truth because she was a female?

theman said...

Bill A. did you serve your country like the victim did? She works around the clock to make money and attend school, she deserves her day in court. She lied just as former President Clinton lied about sex in the Oval office. What is the big dif. Bill. There is no law about having sex in this country, only when it is forced on you. Not calling for any prison rape whatsoever, just prison justice. The Scottsboro boy is another case entirely and cannot be brought up here. Those guys were not guilty, we know that now, but these guys are, I hope to get on the jury

HMan said...

To 7:23 (theman)
Very interesting that you said "WE" know that the LAX guys are guilty. Tell me, who is "we"?
By the way, if you confident that the guilt of these 3 is obvious, you should have no objection to this trial being moved, right? Any fair-minded folks should be able to see it, right?

Anonymous said...

Theman(less) probably cousin Jakki is posting from the public library again. Thought they closed at 6:00 pm on Friday.

GPrestonian said...

7:23 theman

"She lied just as former President Clinton lied about sex in the Oval office."

Well, at least you admit that she lied. Thank you.

Served her country for all of 8 months, too.

theman said...

Hman, we are the people of NC, remember that it is the State vs the three criminals

Anonymous said...

6:34 DITTO to your comments and much gratitude to Bill, Liestoppers and the rest.

Anonymous said...

The false accuser is the type to join the military and then immediately get pregnant. the intent of joining was to get the benefits not to serve her country.

and the question here, theman, is not whether she served her country, but if she was raped. she most certainly was not raped by anyone on the lacrosse team. there is evidence that she had sex with at least five people in different parts of her body in the same time span as she was claiming rape.

perhaps she was raped. she probably was so whacked on drugs and booze that she has no idea what happened to her. but wouldn't it make more sense to pursue those who left dna samples on her than the lax boys who were ruled out by the tests? oh, but those people might be black. and we're not trying to put another black man in prison.

we need some white inmates to diversify the prison system so the inmates are rehabilitated "better" (and some white folks are punished for simply being white). well, try going after meehan. his dna was there! also, check to see if its his baby.

WINDBAG

Anonymous said...

Here is my question. Once Meehan was through testifying, why didn’t the judge give both Nifong and Meehan a Miranda warning? This case now reeks of criminal conspiracy. We have a smoking gun. Meehan has testified as to a conspiracy between him and Nifong to conceal material evidence. The privacy claim is a lame and unconvincing reason for their failure to disclose.

Anonymous said...

oh, one other question:

If everyone would please recall karla holloway's sparkling observation that "white innocense means black guilt."

Okay, so, now that were at best inches away from declaring the whites innocent, how should we punish the blacks?

and before you pull down my comment KC, remember, its karla's observation and the logical question to follow the determination guilt or innocense.

i'm starting to warm to all of the principles that these "civil rights" activists and multicultural/affirmative action cheerleaders push. but, of course, I would apply those principles for my benefit. And since i'm a white male, that would mean a return to the jim crow south and hopefully it would spread to the north.

at least i can agree with these people on the principle; we only disagree about who should benefit.

WINDBAG

bill anderson said...

How do you know the Scottsboro Boys were not guilty? If you say medical evidence, then you would have to follow the medical evidence here.

By the way, why do you want to get on the jury? You would have to lie during the selection process, so you are exposing yourself as a liar.

This is the last message to you or Yolanda, and I would urge others to ignore these people. They are liars, racists, and cheats, and now they are saying they will lie in open court, so they are perjurers.

theman said...

hello winfbag there are no laws against having sex with different people, who you want to have sex with. The case is she didn't want to have sex with the 3 rapist

Anonymous said...

i guess i need to egg on the man some more

how do you know she had sex with the three defendants. what is your proof dude

Anonymous said...

Theman should be given some good ol' southern justice.

theman said...

8:34, we don't but the girl need a day in court to prove that. Wouldn't you if you were robbed by three females. Let her testify and let the jury decide.

Anonymous said...

ok theman, you're clearly dense, and probably not much further evolved than the accuser's cousin, Jakkie, but for fun, i'll try.

of course there's no law against having sex with whoever you want to. but the point is, the only objective proof is that she had sex with five other people and they deposited copious amounts of dna in every orifice of her body.

plus, she was so f'ed up that night, i'm posing the possibility that perhaps she was raped. but it was by one of the people who smeared her with their dna, not the lax players. she was simply too out of it to remember who raped her. but that of course if mere conjecture.

the fact is that she wasn't raped by anyone that night and probably not ever. how many rape victims are out getting their freak on 2 weeks after they were brutally raped. none.

but i know that none of this matters to you. the lax players are guilty of being white. that's enough. but don't you have a better chance with meehan? he's white and his dna is there. urge his prosection. i'll support you.

WINDBAG

Anonymous said...

Will be interesting to see if the 5 positive (none from the accused found) DNA finds on Precious will be checked through the National Databank to see if they are previous rapist's. Can the defense request this? Lot of cold case's are solved in this manner. Not that I believe she was actually raped.

Anonymous said...

theman is a rapist. i want my day in court to argue it!!!

WINDBAG

Victim in Massachusetts said...

8:55 If this case goes to trial and Collin, David and Reade are convicted on false charges than there will be no stopping any female from walking in to a police station and filing charges and the cops and DA's will have to take us seriouly with no evidence required.

All of the true crime in America like murder will just have to take a back set, until all of the false rape claim work there way through the courts.

Anonymous said...

Can't wait for Ruth Sheehan's latest "sickening" column about this case. I trust it will be about Nifong's sickening silence about the exculpatory evidence.

its the least she can do since she hasn't done the honorable thing and resigned from her column.

that fat bitch.

Anonymous said...

Victim in Mass.
Ref you letter from NC State Bar did it appear sincere or just a generic attempt to appease?

Anonymous said...

At the end of the day, after the players are cleared and are successful in their subsequent Sec. 1983 suit against Nifong, I just hope that the City of Durham refuses to indemnify the DA. Mike Nifong's legal career is likely over, and it would only be fitting that he--and not the City of Durham--be required to pay the damages to the players.

Further, regardless of where you stand on the "guilt" or "innocence" of these boys, no one should be comfortable with the procedural misconduct that has become vintage Nifong.

Anonymous said...

Precious will have to appear in court Feb 5th reference the id process. Defense is happy as a 5 year old at Christmas!

http://abclocal.go.com/wtvd/story?section=triangle&id=4855312

Anonymous said...

victim in mass:

were you responding to me and a letter from ruth sheehan to the nc state bar?

9:12

PS: No, that would not be enough. She urged the violation of due process. and for that lapse in judgment she has shown herself unworthy of reporting the news to the public. i suggest she devote the balence of her career to hot dog eating contests. she can keep her fat mouth shut.

Victim in Massachusetts said...

9:15 the letter that I received souned quite sincere. It didn't sound like the standard lets wait and see what we'll do if anything. The Guy even signed it with a real pen, not a name stamper.

Anonymous said...

Thanks VIM. Seems sincere!

Anonymous said...

Chicago writes:

I can't wait to see Chesire and company question Precious on February 5. My guess is she fails to even show up in court or they some how push things back because she is pregnant and they will make some medical excuse. That day will be a hotter ticket than Duke vs UNC 2 days later.

Anonymous said...

"Mike Nifong's legal career is likely over"

He has connections in traffic court - maybe he could land a meter-maid job ? -

Nah - Someone would be sticking their neck out too far - he has a better shot as bouncer at Precious' place of employ.

bill anderson said...

The people in the courtroom today witnessed the admission that a crime was committed -- by Nifong and Meehan. Obstruction of justice statutes often are misused by prosecutors in order to secure felony indictments against people when they cannot find any real crimes that someone may or may not have committed.

However, in this case, obstruction of justice IS the crime. Furthermore, Meehan and Nifong and others in the DA's office agreed to withhold documents, which makes them guilty also of conspiracy to obstruct justice.

I have a lot of experience writing about federal criminal law, and I can say without reservation that the basis of federal criminal charges is present here. Now, I have been a strong critic of the feds, and I do not want the feds to step in just because they can.

One would hope that the powers that be in North Carolina would be the ones bringing the charges. There are enough state statutes to cover what we saw today. However, if the feds choose to become involved, the possibility is real for Nifong to face serious charges.

Furthermore, if this ever went to federal court, it would be in Raleigh, not Durham, and Nifong would not have quite as sympathetic a jury or judge.

We shall see what happens. Prosecutors in this country are like little dictators, but even dictators are toppled once in a while.

Anonymous said...

Thumbs up Bill!

Anonymous said...

important info on greta:

seems durham county does not keep transcripts of grand jury hearings: she pointed out that had defense had excul DNA evidence, there would have been no indictment

any comments?

Flann

duke09parent said...

I posted this on Liestoppers' thread on the hearing today so if you've read what I posted there tonight, don't bother with this.

Wow, what a day. I just spent the last two hours reading the vsrious posts here and on Liestoppers. I have various thoughts on what I've read.

Defense doesn't want to challenge the technical abilities or the credibility of Meehan. They want to be able to use the DNA results if the case goes to trial. They also want Meehan to be credible where his testimony hangs Nifong. Meehan violating the lab's internal policies is not much of a problem in of itself. If the violations are a significant variance from DNA labs' standard of conduct (probably were) that would be more important. Referring to Nifong as the client is no big deal. It's not unusual for a business person to refer to the contact for the client as the client. Meehan should be portrayed as a neophyte to the NC courts who was manipulated by Nifong.

It was just unrealistic to expect the court to dismiss the case today. I believe the defense motions, but they are only one side, so the state should be given a chance to respond. I thought there would be an evidentiary hearing on the motion to supress. I'm sorry it won't be held until February. However, that delay will give the defense an opportunity to pour over the transcript of today and compare it to contradictory statements Nifong made earlier. Someone quoted Nifong saying on May 18 that there was no additional exculpatory evidence. I would also expect a motion to dismiss based on prosecutorial misconduct, but they may want to wait until the motion to supress is ruled upon (granted, I hope) so that the dismissal motion can have a couple of different grounds.

If the lab report shenanigan was the only act of misconduct or dishonesty by Nifong, the judge might say that the late production, while deplorable, did not prejudice the defense, since they had it well before the trial. But I think the cumulative effect of so many acts of unprofessional conduct, including lies to the court, will weigh in favor of dismissal.

I have long thought that CGM would refuse to testify once the day of her reckoning on the stand approached. That day will be the suppression hearing.

I still don't think the feds or the NC Bar will get into this until the case is resolved, by dismissal or trial. I know one of our posters says he has a contact with the bar, and I hope I'm wrong in thinking they won't act until the case is dismissed. There really isn't much for the feds to gain by intervening before giving the state system more time to do the right thing. They may investigate and start a file.

Talking head prosecutors formerly defending Nifong are now saying hiding the lab results is egregious misconduct. Even Ted Williams seems to be coming around. The NC Bar might do Nifong a favor by disbarring him. Criminal prosecutors might think that's punishment enough.

Funny/scary moment on Greta just now (9:45). Woody Vann clarified the grand jury procedure in NC. The testimony is not recorded. No prosecutor goes in with the grand jury. There is no judicial review of the sufficiency of evidence. The "bill of indictment" is prepared by the prosecutors and after the grand jury hears witnesses (police or whoever) and asks questions, they vote on whether or not the "bill of indictment" is a "true bill". Greta, Ted and two ex-prosecutors were just stunned. Another defense lawyer said he was not surprised because South Carolina also does not record grand jury testimony.

Anonymous said...

Defense was not even allowed during GJ hearing. Another reason Nifong is going to be investigated. If no warrants are issued there is no probable cause hearing. And Nifong chose to seek indictments via grand jury hearing than having DPD seek arrests warrants, for which they had no evidence

Locomotive Breath said...

Link to another first-hand report

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1753040/posts?page=1241#1241

Anonymous said...

Earlier today, KC said:

"DNA security director Brian Meehan, under vigorous examination, admitted in today's hearing that Mike Nifong knew that the report the company produced failed to include critical exculpatory evidence--namely, that multiple DNA samples from men were found in the rape kit.

Meehan's assertion: that privacy concerns trumped his obligation to follow both the law and his own company's protocols."

The *Report* (prepared by Meehan, not Nifong) was arguably a mere summary of key points. The *Report* did not include the exculpatory evidence about non-defendant DNA being in the FA; that omission, however, is arguably the result of a plausible decision about what should and should not be included in a Report which is a summary and which, by definition, leaves out some data. Nifong did, however (admittedly only after first resisting/objecting and after a court order), produce that underlying exculpatory evidence to defense counsel.

Therefore, it is not clear to me that a strong case of culpable cover-up can be made on the “”Meehan matters”, or that defendants were prejudiced. I am, however, open to the notion that Nifong acted in bad faith in conspiring to have the Report omit that exculpatory evidence and in not producing the underlying evidence in the first instance. Still a mere omission is not the same as an outright lie, especially when the omission is premised on the ostensible grounds of “protect privacy, hold down costs, not relevant.”
Defendants’ relevant written motion was merely to force further disclosures, not to dismiss or get other sanctions for Nifong’s bad acts.

I now see that, at 11:03 p.m., Duke09parent made some of these same kinds of points, as well as a valid point that lies to the court about “no more exculpatory evidence” could be grounds for ultimate dismissal of the State’s case.
--Dean Webster

Anonymous said...

KC,

Ban the troll. There are several dedicated Nifong enablers on the internet who have mucked up the court tv and talkleft boards. Ban the troll for the sake of your blog

duke09parent said...

It's pretty common in grand jury proceedings not to allow defense counsel in. Even when the suspect wants to testify, he cannot take an attorney in.

Recording the testimony can be helpful later to both prosecution and defense. Obvious to the defendant because if it is shown that testimony to the grand jury was fraudulent, the indictment could be dismissed. For the prosecution, if a state's witness changes his testimony, the grand jury testimony can be used to bring him back into line.

bill anderson said...

In reading Dean's points, I would say almost surely that the courts would interpret Nifong's actions in the same light. Now, federal prosecutors have indicted and the courts have convicted people for less. But people like Nifong have a huge insurance policy, being prosecutors.

My fervent hope is that people begin to understand what prosecutors have done to the system of justice in this country. For years, prosecutors have fed us this "the law is so unfair to us poor prosecutors" and "defense attorneys get all the breaks, blah, blah, blah." We clearly can see this is not true. Prosecutors literally hold ALL of the cards.

Anonymous said...

Is there enough evidence to indict Precious, assuming this case goes bye-bye?

Flann

theman said...

You people have no clue what you are talking about, this poor rape victim will come out with a smile on her face and the rapist are jail, this will be the end of the case. So you should be satisfied with thar resul. The jury jury will finf them guilty of one of the several charge and they will be in jail.

Anonymous said...

to theman:

Have you forgotten to take your medication?

Be a good boy, and rinse the shit out of your diapers.

That'saboy.

Flann

Anonymous said...

theman,

Methinks ,instead, one or more of the players will sue the crap out of this lieing streetwalker, and will win. However, unlike Tawana Bradley, she will not disappear into anonymity. She'll never leave this s-hole we call Durham, and her pathetic visage will remain here for all to see, on occasion.

Anonymous said...

"Woody Vann clarified the grand jury procedure in NC. The testimony is not recorded. No prosecutor goes in with the grand jury. There is no judicial review of the sufficiency of evidence."

But, Judge Stephens was present, right?

Anonymous said...

Kc, your point about only Victoria Peterson being there in support of nifong is an example of what you do not know about durham; the black people are hard at work at that time of the morning. and i think you will find the atmosphere QUITE different now that the defense has asked for a change of venue for the next hearing and the victim will be in court. the black community will be out in force. Victoria Peterson and her allies will make sure of that. you can count on it!

Anonymous said...

The black "community" in Durham is always out in full force down at the Social Services office. Most live for that free check. And when they get a little education, they just move on up to getting a free check for doing nothing with a "title" and an office space.

The black "community" in Durham proves the theory of evolution. Forget about Creationism. God isn't crazy enough to have created these troublesome imbeciles on purpose.

The families of these three guys should sue the whole scummy town and break the bank.

Anonymous said...

to the man: you stated the 3 will meet big bad John. you know big bad John? from where, prison?

Anonymous said...

the black people of durham are the ones who help staff duke medical center, city hall, the jail and the various business there. they have thier own banks and an insurance comapny right there in durham so not everybody is on the free check, you racist sob. and the man is right, the dukies are going to meet some tough men in prison because they are going up. all they have to do is get convicted on one of those charges and they are gone. they might not get them for rape but they may get them for kidnapping or assault on a female.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 10:57--

What? You fool. The whole country now knows what kind of people live in Durham.

You must be CGM aka Precious' mammy..

Anonymous said...

Precious is a lame target for recrimination or even indignation - she's just a hapless pain-killer adict.

Nifong is the target - he's damaged reputations, family finances,incited racial strife, and undermined the trust of the legal system.

For one, I will not be satisfied until his reputation is ruined (exposed for what it is), his finances are destroyed (defending himself in court), new laws/protections put in place to restore lost confidence in the legal system, and he spends quality time in jail.

HMan said...

To 10:57
To all you hoax enablers - I keep asking this but get no answer - if this case got moved to another city, (any other city) do you think a conviction could possibly occur? I mean guilty is guilty no matter where the evidence is presented, right?
On the other hand, if you are really saying that Durham is indeed the only place on Planet Earth that would ever convict on this (non) evidence then try to see why the rest of us are so upset about it. See, we do not live on Planet Durham and what you guys are trying to do to these 3 innocent kids is the real crime. Maybe you are not good with math but there are more of us than of you.

Anonymous said...

"assault on a female"

Nobody assaulted that lying whore but some of her Johns, who number into the hundreds.

FOOL!

You racists in Durham are going to see what justice really is before this thing is over. You'll have to get your welfare checks over at Nifong and Cy's house now.

Anonymous said...

11:24--

I agree with everything that you have said and I pray that all of us collectively can make that happen.

Anonymous said...

9:12 PM-- Ruth Sheehan is married to some guy whose family is a bunch of old NC liberals from way back.

Her husband I believe used to have a job in state gov't, and he has a serious speech problem. A severe and embarrassing studdering problem.

You can't expect Sheehan to go against the liberal dogma unless she is forced to. I agree that she's a terrible writer.