Sunday, December 24, 2006

Nifong's Fantasy World

Mike Nifong’s arrogance is breathtaking. Today’s Times features another article based in part on the three-hour interview the D.A. granted with Times reporters on Thursday. It’s worth reiterating that, prior to Thursday, Nifong had, on multiple occasions, termed it procedurally improper for him to publicly discuss the case in any way.

According to the Times, Nifong has developed an excuse for why he entered into an agreement with lab director Brian Meehan to intentionally exclude from Meehan’s report results showing that the DNA of several unidentified males was discovered in the accuser’s rape kit. His claim? It was an innocent mistake—he had other work that distracted him from his duty to follow the Open Discovery law.

“You know,” he told the Times, “it’s not the only case I have right now. I have two. The other one’s a quadruple homicide. If you ask me, to everybody but a reporter for an out-of-town newspaper, the quadruple homicide is probably the more significant case. But because we have some of these other sexy issues here, you all are flipping out over this particular case, which is not the most significant case in our office. It doesn’t mean it doesn’t get attention. What I’m saying is in the overall pecking order of things, it’s not the most important thing that we’re doing.”

1.) The Significance

His deal with Dr. Meehan, claims Nifong, isn’t all that important.

Times reporters David Barstow (a new figure on the Duke case as of the last two articles) and Duff Wilson explain:

[Nifong] denied, though, any effort to hide the results or delay their release. He has long been known locally for giving defense lawyers open access to his evidence, even before a state law required that. And, he said, even if the test results should have been turned over months earlier, the defense still had the evidence well in advance of any trial date — which had not yet been set.

“So it’s not like this is something we discover on the fourth day of a five-day trial and say, ‘Oh, by the way,’ ” he said. “I mean, that’s not what’s going on.”

UNC law professor Joseph Kennedy has, correctly, ridiculed this argument. “Prosecutors,” he wrote, “do not get to play ‘Battleship’ with their discovery obligations by requiring defense lawyers to score a direct hit with a discovery request. Prosecutors must affirmatively disclose what the law requires.”

And the law, in this case, is clear: since 2004 in North Carolina, prosecutors must turn over to the defense all evidence, whether or not the prosecutor considers it exculpatory.

That Nifong effectively brushed off his obligation to follow the law testifies to the mindset he has brought to this case.

2.) The Election

Although the Times continues to obscure its presence, an election did occur for district attorney on November 7, 2006. The quadruple homicide was not the “more significant case” in that contest. In fact, the quadruple homicide played almost no role in the race. Effectively the only issue in that campaign was the district attorney’s handling of the lacrosse case, and what it said about his fitness to serve as prosecutor.

Nifong’s revisionist history, however, goes something like this: he was facing a recall election in which his political opposition—along with the N&O news staff—hammered him for lacrosse case procedural violations. But he was too busy (doing what is unclear) to notice that he had committed a major procedural violation by not turning over the exculpatory DNA results in the very case for which he was under daily criticism.

Even Nifong’s own words contradict this transparently absurd version of events. On November 5, the district attorney was perfectly clear on the significance of the lacrosse case to his constituency. In an e-mail sent to his supporters and leaked to me, he stated that the Recall Nifong/Vote Cheek forces “have endeavored to make this election something it is not: a referendum on a single case that that [sic] view as a threat to their sense of entitlement and that they do not trust a jury of Durham citizens to decide.” In the days before the election, then, Nifong fully understood which of the two cases was more significant to the November vote.

In light of his November 5 e-mail (as well as common sense), Nifong’s statement to the Times about the comparative significance of the two cases in Durham can only be interpreted as a deliberate attempt to mislead.

3.) The Excuse

As to the insinuation that his duties prosecuting the quadruple homicide played any role his failure to turn over the lacrosse case DNA: the assertion only shows Nifong’s contempt for the Times, a newspaper that has played the fool for him for far too long.

Police arrested Rodrick Duncan for a quadruple homicide on October 16, at which point Nifong’s office took over the case.

  • On April 10, Nifong entered into an agreement with Dr. Meehan for an “intentional limitation” of Meehan’s report to exclude the exculpatory evidence. April 10 is prior to October 16.
  • On May 18, Nifong turned over Dr. Meehan’s selectively edited report to defense attorneys. He accompanied the document and other discovery material with the following statement. “The state is not aware of any additional material or information which may be exculpatory in nature with respect to the defendant.” May 18 is prior to October 16.
  • On June 22, as the Times story observes, “Mr. Nifong denied that Mr. Meehan and he had talked about anything else he had to disclose to the defense.” June 22 is prior to October 16.
  • On September 22, Nifong ridiculed the defense’s request for the underlying DNA data, accusing defense attorneys of conducting a “witch hunt” and sarcastically finding it “interesting now that they are trying to get information that would help dispute those tests.” He also released a letter from Dr. Meehan expressing concerns (which Judge Smith overrode) about privacy and cost regarding turning over the data. September 22 is prior to October 16.

In short: on no fewer than four occasions before police made arrests in the quadruple homicide, Nifong took an affirmative act to deny defense access to DNA material that he himself now concedes was exculpatory.

There have been two consistent patterns in this case. First, Nifong will manipulate any and all evidence to his fit his desire to charge the lacrosse players with a crime. Second, every time Nifong speaks publicly on the case, he unintentionally winds up providing fodder for future ethics charges.

The Nifong interview with the Times conforms to both patterns.


Anonymous said...

For New York readers and other who want to complain about The New York Times' pathetic performance in the hoax case, don't waste time complaining to the ombudsman or the editor or the publisher; instead, contact members of the board of directors.

Kemper said...

God Bless you and Merry Christmas. Take a few hours off, we won't miss any updates until at least DEC 26th. We'll will miss them, but you need a break.

Oh, Nifungu DEADMAN Walking.

Anonymous said...

Chicago writes:

Outstanding analysis KC!

I find the wording in the Meehan letter very interesting. It is almost like Nifong told him exactly how to write it, in an effort to have a so called "expert" who was actually a puppet argue against the release of the exculpatory evidence. Nifong was indeed his "client."

Anonymous said...

Chicago writes:

Let us also not forget the statement Nifong read before the December 15 hearing in which he stated that he was not aware of the exculpatory evidence until Wednesday of that week. That was a blatant lie.

bill anderson said...

Oh, get off it K.C.! You know that October 16, 2006, comes before May, June, and September -- 2007!

Amazingly, the NY Times still managed to swallow all of that crap, but it is, after all, the Newspaper of Walter Duranty, Jayson Blair, and Judith Miller. I know that there are some adults working there, but from what I can tell, the children still are trying to run the show.

As I have said before, I think that the meeting was more than just an "interview." I believe that Nifong and the reporters from the Times were planning some exit strategies and the like.

Nifong no longer believes in his case, but he pursues it, anyway. This also is against the law, but Nifong already threw the lawbooks out the window a long time ago.

Myra Langerhas said...

Excellent post as always. I tried to take the situation 10 years hence:

Myra Langerhas said...

Excellent post as always. I tried to take the situation 10 years hence:

bill anderson said...

Sunday morning! Time for Mikey and the potbangers to confess!

Anonymous said...

Merry Christmas KC,

Your eloquent and succinct analysis are yet again logical and damning to Nifong and the MSM. Where are the MSM? I believe they are too busy worrying about important issues such as Britney Spears underwear and Donald Trump vs. Rosie! KC, I will say it again and again, you are a breath of fresh air!

Mom of Five

Joe T. said...

Great work here. Keep knocking the (once noble) NY Times and Nifong on their butts. The standards in the U.S. have not slipped so low that we should tolerate such immorality.

Anonymous said...

So Nifong's defense to entering into a criminal conspiracy with Meehan to conceal exculpatory evidence is that Nifong can't handle two cases at a time? Geez. Nifong must really have serious contempt for the NC Bar (not to mention his Durham constituents) if he really thinks this lame-ass excuse is going to fly.

Anonymous said...

JLS said ...

The NYT article says, "In extreme cases, North Carolina law allows a judge to remove a district attorney from office for “willful misconduct.” "

I wondered if that article was right on the remove the DA from office part? Anyone know?

That does not seem like NC that a single judge could remove a DA from office for willful misconduct. And that is the NY Times and they are known for errors.

Anonymous said...

KC - Merry Xmas and Happy New Year.

Anonymous said...

Chicago writes:

Bill, great insight. I agree, where are the pot bangers and the group of 88? It is indeed time for them to at VERY LEAST make a statement.

Bill, KC, gpresotonian, Kemper, Debrah, victim in mass and everyone, have a wonderful and blessed Christmas, I feel like we are all family now.


Anonymous said...

Good trial lawyers like Joe Chesire can smell when the blood begins to flow from their legal opponents and in this case D.A. Nifong is oozing red from every available oriface.

Judge Smith knows the Feb. 5 is his chance to save the North Carolina court system from ongoing shame and humiliation and he can only do so by eviserating Mr. Nifong and the D.A. knows it by now after the most recent NYT articles.

There has never quite been a case like this in the history of Anglo American jurisprudence and the hearing on February 5 could be unprecedented if the case lasts that long.

Anonymous said...

I would think that Nifong, as a prosecutor, would be aware that the right to remain silent should be exercised by those who find themselves in trouble with the law. Nifong may have gained some slight, temporary PR benefit from talking the NYT, but at the expense of digging a deeper hole for himself with the ethics panel of the Bar Association.

Anonymous said...

for once, i'm proud of the N&O. Everyone should read neff's article. he trashes nifong and carefully sets forth nifong's lies and misrepresentations to the court about the dna testing (can't wait for them to outline the rest of the lies he's told).

good job mr. neff. now, let's see if the N&O does the right thing and fires Ruth Sheehan. She too jumped on the bandwagon with her story about the sickening silence.


The Sword of Justice said...

Nicely done K.C. You deserve a Pulitzer for all your great reporting.

Two suggestions:

1) It's time to publicly identify and expose all the other lawyers in Nifong's office. If they don't resign, then they sanction Nifong's actions and should be called on it.

2) It's really time to go after the Gang of 88. But rather than exposing some of the fruitcakes who signed, I would recommend investigating the more "distinguished" faculty who signed. They, afterall, have the most to lose in being publicly shamed. It's time to investigate the work of William Chafe and Peter Wood from the History Dept. Surely they should loses their endowed chairs over their shameful behavior.

CMc said...

Great work, as usual.

I agree with 7:37, but I'm thrilled that Nifong's too arrogant to shut his trap. The backstroking is absolutely comical at this point.

Similarly, how 'bout the comments of the attorney Meehan hired to mitigate his culpability. Hasn't anyone with coin learned anything from Mike Tyson? - yet another lawyer, outside of his jurisdiction and practice area, ignoring the laws in the place they're hired to work.

He ignored the NC discovery laws, and defends his client by more or less stating that the defense would've been too dumb to go through the technical material, anyway. And if his cavalier attitude re: what he feels the law should be weren't bad enough, he's really shown how much attention he's given to the matter by repeatedly referring to the Duke soccer case.

Anonymous said...

The evidence that Nifong committed a crime is far far greater than the evidence the lacrosse players committed a crime. In fact you couldn't even trip over the latter and the former is now a mountain.

Anonymous said...

Nifong is a despicable human being. That said, his demise has been wrongly predicted. It ain't going to happen. Here's why:

1) Mikey has stalwart support from his core constituency, the durham black community.
2) The February hearing will be delayed due to Precious' pregnancy. This gives Mikey two months at least to "build his case" and cleanup the contradictions we have noted.
3) As far as I can know there simply isn't a precedent for the NC Bar to disbar a DA for the "errors" Mikey has committed.
4) In terms of being prosecuted for withholding evidence, the former Union County, NC DA withheld a deal the state had cut with a key witness in a murder case. He was not charged, although conceivably what he did was a felony.

Mikey will finish out his term as Durham's DA.

bill anderson said...

Today's N&O article is absolutely devastating. As I said before, if this were the only problem for the Fong, one might be inclined to believe it was an honest mistake.

But when taken in context with everything else he has done, we get the picture of the out-of-control prosecutor, the caricature of the out-of-control prosecutor. The stuff of legends.

I see this morning that even the Herald-Sun is jumping ship, although the editorial writer (probably Greg Childress) still tries to give us this "Nifong listened to a lowly person, which is good" nonsense. Yes, I want people who simply do not judge by race and social class (my, that would be a first in Durham), but also pay attention to the evidence.

By trying to manipulate the evidence, Nifong demonstrates that he was using the false stories for his own gain, and to give the local black community a sense of entitlement. In the end, even they will abandon him, complaining that he didn't manipulate the evidence enough.

Merry Christmas, Fong.

Anonymous said...

Great work KC.

It would seem so obvious that once again Nifong breaks the Cardinal rule of his position!


The FONG just can't help himself can he ?

First we get 70+ interviews with the press. Then he goes into hibernation for a 6 months.

When he is rumbled by Meehan under oath he spends the whole week remodelling the evidence..again.

The guy is a 1st class felon; it is beyond me why the the USAG Gonzalaz or somebody in the judicial hierarchy doesn't have the Ba*** to investigate the Fong asap???

The damage being done to the NC justice system is phenomenal , although I do not think it can fall any lower or will it fall of the edge of the planet?

The more this drags on the more I believe the FONG has some form of mental illness?

If no investigation is under way Tuesday then we have NO JUSTICE only Kangaroo Justice in America!


Anonymous said...

Just my opinion, but expect another blockbuster announcement next Friday, late morning. My expectation is that a supposed new lineup will be conducted and the false accuser will not be able to identify, with certainty, any player that was at the party. Long weekend and the case will be dismissed and the true prosecution of the real criminals will begin.

The rest of this is going to be fun to watch. The most disappointing part of this case being dismissed is we won't get to see Joe Cheshire perform in the courtroom and we won't get to see Nifong humiliated. If he is ever charged with a crime he will plead it out rather than get on the witness stand.

Anonymous said...

PS: Is the FONG working towards a Temporary Insanity plea to NC Bar?


Anonymous said...

8:16 The feds might just be sitting in the background, watching and waiting for the right time to move in.

I agree Nifong just doesn't know when to shut up.

All of the rats are jumping ship, even they must know that something must be on the horizon.

8:04 don't kid yourself any longer this case is done. We all can see the writing on the wall, even if you, Cash Michaels, NAACP and Nifong won't read it.

Merry Christmas Everyone

Anonymous said...

From the NYT article, Durham, N.C's DA Nifong says...

"but because we have some of these other sexy issues here," he added, "you all are flipping out over this particular case in our office. It doesn't mean it doesn't get attention. What I'm saying is in the overall pecking order of things, it's not the most important thing that we are doing."

Unreal. well just what is getting the attention of "our office", the christmas party? I seemed to have missed the what must be more than 40 plus press interviews on other things the office is working on.

Mr. DA, people - US citizens, US military personel and international
observers are flipping out over this particular case because we can't believe a sitting DA would so easily get his staff and other court and DPD officials to go along with using a troubled AV, her family and community to frame innocent people just to win an election.

Does anyone recall the DA, in any of the 40+ March/April interviews saying anything but getting people to "flip out" over this case?

Merry Christmas

Anonymous said...

It just occured to me that the accuser has no motivation or possible rewards to testify and plenty of punishment. On the other hand she would face no punishment for refusing to testify so it is obvious she will never take the stand. Bob

Anonymous said...

More from today's NYT article, the three hour interview was held in his office. Why? shouldn't it have been in a conference room? Was he trying to show or mislead reporters by having the interview in his office that was "overrun with documents and court fillingd related to the case" with "more boxes of documents stacked on the floor and on chairs"?

First is it appropriate to have reporters sitting for hour in the presense of active case files?

Second, the DA states he is so busy with a "more significant quadruple homocide" could the volume of documentation staged in his office contain that case material as well? If not, then were is all of that inportant case material stored?

Third, I truely hope he is kidding here "When you go through these pages, and you're numbering them and making copies, you're not reading and understanding what's on every single page."

Maybe the DA staff has all quit, we just haven't heard about it yet.

Anonymous said...

Quite a puff piece, as I said the other day. Nifong and his followers move in unison however. After insisting that this case is the most significant case imaginable and showering it with maximum attention, now Nifong says its just another case, and so do his followers "why so much attention" lament Durhamites, whats the big deal.

Anonymous said...

bob of 8:41:

You have a good point. While the black community wants a little "social justice" out of this, CGM was really looking for a settlement in a civil suit. The criminal matter was just a means to an end. I don't think Willie Gary will touch this one now.

This might be wishful thinking, but wouldn't it be great if CGM turned on Nifung too and said that he pressured her to tell this tale in court after she repeatedly told him that nothing happened? i'll bet she turns on him too. she's an opportunist. That's it.

but on another note, now that she has recanted her tale about the vaginal penetration, doesn't that mean she filed a false police report? i believe that's a crime.


GPrestonian said...

And September 13 is before September 22...

Great work, KC, the (at least) 4 instances you cite where Nifong lied or obfuscated the truth re: the DNA prior to the Sept 22 hearing put the lie to his Steve Martin-esque "I forgot!" defence.

But look at the date of Meehan's letter - ~1 week before the hearing. At a point where the defence has made several motions to compel the DNA discovery production [or perhaps at a point 4 months after the May motion, Nifong knows that Judge Smith is going to act on the motion that 2 other local judges ignored], Nifong & Meehan craft a letter to attempt to avoid that production.

All of your cited acts as well as the Meehan letter certainly appear to suggest conciousness of guilt.

Anonymous said...

Whats with the N.Y.Times ?

Anonymous said...

I have no interest in defending the NY Times, which has done some really shoddy work on this case, but I don't think today's article is an example of that kind of work.

The first two-thirds of the article lay out a very damning case against Nifong. That the reporter quoted Nifong at the end of the article as he tried to defend his actions is just standard journalistic practice -- give the subject of controversy a chance to respond to the complaints against him.

It would have been nice if the reporter had noted that Nifong's claim that the murder case was taking his attention away from the discovery in the lacrosse case is a bunch of hooey. But really, Nifong's own words make him out to a complete liar and bumbler.

I think if we read this article in any other publication we'd have no problem with it. My only point here -- again, not to defend the NYT -- is to say that I think the average NYT reader, who hasn't followed all the ins and outs of this case as we have -- will come away from it with a very poor opinion of Mike Nifong.

Speaking of which, isn't it more and more obvious that Nifong is just a pathological liar? He lies so much and so often that it seems he doesn't even try to spin a good story. He just says whatever comes into his mind at the moment. Every public utterance is along the lines of "Who me? What makes you think it was ME who broke your lamp, mom?" or "The dog ate my homework." All just clearly complete fabrications. Thanks, KC, for holding him to the truth.

Merry Christmas to all on this board and to all who follow this tragedy and pull for the falsely accused players.

Anonymous said...

The only satisfaction i get out of all this is that Durham is going to get Nifonged for 4 more years.

Anonymous said...

to 9:24

I agree that today's article was not shoddy, but what about the hard questions.

If Nifong was not interviewing witnesses, looking at documents, or writing responses, what was he doing while the defendants suffered and the community was in turmoil.

What preparation did he do before making his representations to the Judge.

Why did he cite privacy if he thought the test results were turned over. Did he think there was yet another batch of documents, he obviously thought something was held back.

Why suddenly re-interview the fa.

And so forth.

Anonymous said...

On one thing many of us would agree with Nifong showing "contempt for the Times, a newspaper that has played the fool ... for far too long." [Ellipsis TM Maureen Dowd.]

Roper said...

Nifong.... what a fool!

Brodhead.... you need to get onto the right side of this case immediately.... and with ACTIONS... not WORDS. No more Shakespeare! It is time for a MAN of action.

KC.... our eternal gratitude! Merry Christmas, and to all, a much Happier New Year.

sceptical said...

I don't think the North Carolina discovery rules make an allowance for:

1) A messy office

"On Thursday afternoon, the volume of evidence was plain to see in his office. Next to his desk, a small conference table was overrun with documents and court filings related to the case. More boxes of documents were stacked on the floor and on chairs.

“When you’re going through these pages,” he said, “and you’re numbering them and making copies, you’re not reading and understanding what’s on every single page.”

2. Other cases the DA is working on

"More broadly, Mr. Nifong said, trying to explain his failure to disclose the DNA tests sooner, he had other work to attend to.

“You know, it’s not the only case I have right now,” he said. “I have two. The other one’s a quadruple homicide. If you ask me, to everybody but a reporter for an out-of-town newspaper, the quadruple homicide is probably the more significant case. But because we have some of these other sexy issues here, you all are flipping out over this particular case, which is not the most significant case in our office. It doesn’t mean it doesn’t get attention. What I’m saying is in the overall pecking order of things, it’s not the most important thing that we’re doing

3 Lapses in attention and memory

"But given the volume of evidence in this case, he said he simply did not realize that he had failed to turn over the DNA results in question. “It was not something that I specifically noticed,” he said, “because if I specifically noticed it I would have dealt with it."


Mr. Nifong's comments to the NY Times are a weak and ineffective attempt to justify his egregious failure to turn over exculpatory DNA evidence. When the defense seeks sanctions, we'll see what Judge Smith thinks about these excuses.


Anonymous said...

Just when you think things cannot get more strange, Mr. Nifong brings us to a new level of absudity. Alice did not have a more peculiar journey to Wonderland than we have had. Thank you KC and other bloggers for pointing out the nuances as well as the essential elements of the story.

I wish you all the best during the holidays. I am traveling with my family. My husband wants to know if you all will be joining us for Christmas dinner?! I very much appreciate our conversations.


Anonymous said...

Merry Christmas to all.


Your work on this hoax deserves praise from every fair minded person. Please followup on the two suggestions from the Sword of Justice.

Anonymous said...

During the initial months of this hoax, the New York Times was the willing tool of a corrupt prosecutor. Now, at the 11th hour, they are the mouthpiece. This hoax has really served the NYT well. It took them 8 days to mention (other than in AP articles) anything about exculpatory evidence. They all but ignored the national story of a US Congressman writing to the DOJ. Talk about supressing evidence. Fluff Wilson STILL HASN'T MENTIONED this Congressman by name. But as one commenter hinted, what are our expectations from a paper that promoted rising star Jayson Blair even after his own supervisor formally complained he was dishonest?

Anonymous said...

Chicago writes:

Observer, I would love to join you guys for dinner. I am a bachelor, so I get very few home cooked meals. :)

Merry Christmas

Anonymous said...

I have two questions I wonder if anyone has insight into:

1) If Nifong were removed from the case for prosecutorial misconduct, what does NC law say about who would take it over? The sensible answer would be either the AG's office, the DA's office in another jurisdiction, or some kind of special prosecutor appointed by the court. I'm worried that the law may simply require that the tainted prosecutor (Nifong) be removed and recused and the case reassigned to someone else in the same office. Since all of these other Durham prosecutors report to Nifong and owe him their jobs, if that's how the law works, true recusal by him seeems impossible here.

2) How did the next hearing get scheduled for the first week in February, given the conflict with the AV's due date? Was this conflict discussed in court in the process of scheduling? Was the judge aware of it?

Anonymous said...

Great work, KC!

Btw, has your research on the Hoax uncovered any info on Judge Stephens, his career and his Nifong-enabling rulings?
He presided over the GJ proceedings so he knows what was presented to them.
Also, I still don't understand why he unsealed the McFadyen email and refused to order that Nifong turn over all discovery...

Anonymous said...

Please send this KC analysis to the board of directors of The New York Times Co. Write the bar association again. Call or write to the Department of Justice, attention Attorney General Gonzales. Let Tony Snow know; he's a Davidson grad and knows a little about N.C. Contact the U.S. Senators from N.C. North Carolina Democrats are protecting one of their own, Nifong. Republicans should get involved in this case. Now is not the time to relax.

Runlite said...

KC, Merry Christmas. You are an answer to prayer with your blogging as are Bill Anderson, Michael Gaynor, Liestoppers, John in Carolina, The Johnsville News.

You are people of strength and courage, a direct contrast with the Nifongians.

I have believed the lax players were innocent from the get go.

For many reasons that I won't list here I knew for certain Collin, Dave and Reade wouldn't touch this woman, unless, of course, it would be to kindly assist her in some way, but absolutely never sexually.

I have prayed that these boys will be both vindicated and avenged from the onset of the case and I firmly believe I will see it take place.

This case will not be over until the Nifongians, all of them, have been dealt with.

God bless all and Merry Christmas to all.

Cedarford said...

Like 9:24 Anonymous, I read the NYTimes article and found it straightforward and unbiased. What they did was interview Nifong and let him speak - while pointing out that he had plenty of opportunity to comply with discovery in the past.

It is for another day and another venue to see who is lying. That would be the Court, the Bar, or the Fed investigators if they come in (so far no request for DOJ help from the gutless Liddy Dole, Burr, or Easley).

The centerpiece of the NYTimes interview was Nifong disputing Meehan on a conspiracy to cover up evidence and with hold it from the defense. Nifong claims no such agreement existed and he simply overlooked it. But two other people were there for the meeting, the cop henchmen of Nifong - Gottlieb and Himan. All 4 should be deposed under oath - and probably it will be the Court that will have 1st opportunity.

Interesting to note that David E. Price (D), Durham's congressman, has been silent on this. Price, I didn't know 'till yesterday, is a "professor on leave" from Duke University's PolySci Department the last 20 years. Artfully sliding under the radar...

Any readers who are constituents might consider writing him, requesting he join in advocating a Federal investigation of abuse of civil liberties in the Duke Rape Case - or write back and explain why he doesn't support this.

Not to mention writing Dole, Burr, and Easley on whether or not they can find spines to request Feds to help restore integrity of North Carolina's legal system.

Anonymous said...

This case speaks out on the need to improve—or more accurately, create— some effective method of prosecutorial oversight. That Nifong has violated the law is obvious to any fair minded observer. It’s equally obvious, from all the commentary and discussion, that there is no good way to reign in a rogue prosecutor like Nifong. This has all happened before and it will keep happening until an effective way is devised to stop prosecutors who abuse the innocent. Nifong has clearly violated the laws governing his conduct and it is more likely than not that nothing will be done that will prevent this from happening again.

The players in this case, because they had effective counsel and parents who were willing to spend whatever it took, are going to come out OK here, eventually. Whether they are ever able to recover the horrendous cost of this defense, I am not so sure. We need an effective way to stop prosecutors who ruin lives! This case is Exhibit A for how it can happen, and how it is almost impossible to stop such abusive behavior. The prosecutor stands as the guardian of our rules and laws. The Romans had a great phrase for this: “Quis custodiet ipsos custodies” (apologies for my failing memory of Latin spelling) meaning: Who will guard the guardians?

Anonymous said...

Why does Nifong continue? Well maybe its because he's crazy (link below to youtube video)...

Title: "He might be crazy"

Brian Johnston said...

In the H/S article this morning is this NC governor's office comment:

"Seth Effron, deputy press secretary to Gov. Mike Easley, said Saturday that Easley repeatedly has stated that he has no authority over the actions of the duly elected district attorney."

I don't believe that NiFong is "duly elected" until being sworn in on Jan 7th. Until the end of the year, he is Easley's APPOINTEE, whom EASLEY could unappoint at the stroke of a pen. A temporary DA could then drop the charges and Nifong would have a very hard time trying to reinstate them.

Anonymous said...

WOW-Two cases and only making $140,000.00 a year. Ted, Bernie all the ex-proscuters are right. DAs are underpaid. In the real world, life is not so easy.

otrblog said...

Excellent analysis KC! You're the best. Thanks for all your efforts in helping these boys and have a wonderful Christmas!

Anonymous said...

I actually tend to agree that the latest NY Times report is quite good. It presents many of the lies of Nifong, and then lets him respond in his own words. It seems to me they let the absurdity of his 'i have more important cases' stand on its own -- no need for them to interject with sermonizing about what a dumb excuse that is, that's pretty obvious.

I do agree that shining light on the 'gang of 88' would be a wonderful turn of events.

Anonymous said...

KC, You are an amazing writer...and your insights into this case are integral to the resolution of this travesty.

The writer at 8:41 suddenly made me realize that CGM is only looking for a legal that she won't be able to sue the lacorsse players, I wouldn't be surprised if she started to turn on the DA and set in motion a suit against Durham for their mishandling of the case and pressure by Nifong on her to continue with the allegations...

Anonymous said...

I wonder how much longer he will be driving around with his DA 14 plate on his car?????????????

Anonymous said...

Hey 10:59-- you're deluding yourself if you think this is a Republican/Democrat issue. Any card-carrying ACLUer can see this prosecution is a malicious sham. The subsequent posts show that Mrs. Dole is no hero on this issue. Good luck getting Tony Snow involved.

Anonymous said...

I have written to Mrs Dole, DOJ, Gonzalez and NC bar.

No resposes to date!

Also written to the Lone Ranger/ Tonto, Indiana Jones and Batman and Robin .

Had reply from Lone Ranger who informed me he is still looking for his Silver Bullets!lol

Anonymous said...

people, this nifong-bashing is getting old

the case is over; therefore:

concentrate on punishing the academic parasites; brodhead; the board of trustees; and the predator

we should have much fun with the above material

last i heard nifong is tightening his sphincter (think he's looking forward to prison)


Anonymous said...


I am a Durhamite. Sad that you're judging a whole city and county by the actions of 'some'.

To your satisfaction w/ 4 more years....Not if I can help it -- personally, I'm hoping they delay his swearing in...

Anonymous said...


Couple of comments --

No one is present in the GJ room when evidence is presented - other than the witness and the GJ and nothing is recorded. Stephens doesn't know what was presented. No one but Nifong, Himan, Gottlieb and the GJ know what evidence was presented (Nifong was also not present but you can bet he met w/ his two witnesses before they testified). I hope members of the GJ can be called to testify in a civil suit.

On the McFayden email, I'm sure it was sealed until they decided whether to charge McFayden. Once the need for a seal is resolved the informaton should become public.

Don't get me wrong I think Stephens let Nifong, his office & DPD get away with far too much in this case but finding Stephens culpable would be impossible....

Anonymous said...

What could the NY Times and Nifong possibly be discussing for three hours!!! Isn't that a very long time for an interview (especially if he's so busy.) I tend to agree the article was pretty good--but where were the obvious follow-up questions. Certainly in three hours there was time for follow-up. Like "when did you actually get the quadruple homicide case" or "why didn't you read the 10 page report from meehan" or "why did you object to the defense motion for the DNA report if you actually did not know what information you had given them." I can think of many more--every one of Nifong's excuses should have prompted a follow-up.

Also, how can there be so much evidence in his office if there is no evidence? And isn't it true that most of the "evidence" is simply fill that the DA's office manufactured to hide the non-evidence? Shouldn't the NY Times have asked waht actually could possibly be in those boxes?

Dave said...

I agree with 3:17. Wilson and Barstow did not meet the standards of journalism that the paper applies to other news stories. It is rare that the Times will simply print statements by public officials without questioning or reviewing archives for contradictions.

Today's story was a step above Wilson's previous efforts but it has several steps before it becomes real journalism.

But one thing that Nifong's three hours with the Times' reporters did was to anger the N&O and H-S. While Neff has done a good job previously, today's stories are unusually tough. And, as KC notes, today is the first time the H-S has mentioned Coleman. Nifong may have been too clever, once again.

Anonymous said...

Regarding the NYT interview with Nifong: how in the world could the reporter(s) spend three hours with the man and not ask the obvious question: "So when you found from the lab that the supposed victim had the DNA from five men in and on her immediately after the alleged attack and you sent the samples to the lab to try to determine who might have attacked her, what did you do to track down the five men who had to be at that moment the prime suspects in the rape you were sure had been committed?" No matter what he answered it had to go into the article -- if they had been smart enough to ask the question.

Anonymous said...

4:34 is absolutely correct--if Nifong had actually believed a rape had occurred, he definitely would have been trying to make a match with the DNA that was found. And it is an obvious question that the NY Times reporters had ample time to ask...

Dave makes a good point about the attitude of the local media--both the H-S and the N-O made comments that suggest they are not happy with Nifong's media strategy--that Nifong is not speaking to "local" media, but that he did give the NY Times a 3 hour interview. This will not help him....

bill anderson said...

Nifong believed that with the NY Times on his side, he could railroad anyone, and since the Times already had shown that it would endorse what obviously was a bogus police report, he figured he had nothing to fear.

Unless you have been involved in journalism, as I was years ago, it is hard to understand the attitude of many of the people at the NY Times and Washington Post. They really believe they are God's gift to journalism. When one couples that "I am a law unto myself" view with the juvenile folk Marxism that dominates those papers, one gets what we have seen in the NY Times' coverage of the Duke case.

You see, these papers do not want simply to COVER the news; they want to SHAPE it. Thus, the Times worked closely with Nifong to create a false story that would fit into the leftist worldview that governs the Times and most large journalistic outfits.

These folks never in a million years believed they could be taken down by a few bloggers and some dogged reporters like Joe Neff. And remember that K.C. was doing this while pursuing his day job, as are the others who are blogging.

It just never occurred to the people at the Times that their version of reality could not overpower everything else. And, no, the three-hour "interview" was a CYA session, not anything that one would call legitimate practice of journalism.

bill anderson said...

I do need to add one more thing. It also is understood with entities like the Times that one does not want to be caught on the losing side. Thus, when it seemed that Nifong was a conviction juggernaut, the Times loved him.

However, now that the lie is exposed, the Times has begun to turn against the man who they believed has made them look bad. Actually, Duff Wilson and some of the others simply need to look in the mirror if they wish to see who has made them look like fools.

Anonymous said...

check out who reviewed barack obama's silly "the audacity of hope" in NYT

gary hart

isn't that sppeeccccccccccial


Anonymous said...

Nifong directly lied to this judge and I don't see how he can accept any representation Nifong makes at this point. Nifong's story changing is exceeded only by his star witness. In court he tells the judge he wasn't aware of the results then outside court he says he was but wanted to protect people's privacy then to the NY Times he says they got lost in a paperwork shuffle. What's next? Nifong and Precious really deserve each other.

Anonymous said...

I have always believed that a messy desk is an indication of messy thinking. Any of you psych types out there to weight in on this?

bill anderson said...

My desk is messy, and I am a pretty messy thinker. However, even I can spot a hoax -- and a hoax promoter!

Merry Christmas everyone.

Anonymous said...

not as messy as precious's knickers

that Jakki get mah horny

u gots her fone #?

Bill Anderson

bill anderson said...

I noticed that someone signed my name to the last post. I did not write that.

Anonymous said...

Posters who use another person's name should be banned from this forum.

Anonymous said...

there can't be 2 bill andersons?

middle name is philip, live in madison, wisconsin

William Anderson

Anonymous said...

Many months ago now, the father of one of the quadruple homicide victims (Lennis Something or Something Lennis) was very upset about the resources being dedicated to the Duke case while the DNA results were still not back on his murdered son's case after waiting close to six months for them. I believe the father who complained is a retired police officer or fireman.

It might be worthwhile to unearth his comments which were the feature point in at least one N&O article back perhaps in April or May. It would certainly belie Nifong's excuse that he was too busy with a quadruple homicide, not that anybody buys that excuse. The quadruple homicide was still a police investigation at that time, while Nifong had taken over as the lead investigator in the Duke case.