In an interview Saturday, Durham City Councilman Eugene Brown astutely noted that the Baker/Chalmers report “raises more questions than answers.”
Mayor Bill Bell has, appropriately, called for the Attorney General to investigate the DPD. In the meantime, however, the City Council should exercise its oversight power and summon Police Chief Chalmers to answer the questions that the report has raised.
The Grand Jury
1.) The Baker/Chalmers report states that all
2.) Did Gottlieb and Himan also explain to the grand jury that in six previous photo arrays at least loosely conformed to DPD guidelines, Mangum had identified no one?
3.) The Baker/Chalmers report discusses the city’s record of “seeking exculpatory statements and evidence.” Did Gottlieb and Himan share with the grand jury that indicted Reade Seligmann and Collin Finnerty the results of the April 10 meeting with Dr. Brian Meehan, which confirmed that no DNA matched either of the people that Mike Nifong wanted to indict?
The April 4, 2006 Exam
1.) The Baker/Chalmers report stated, “It was the primary intent of the investigator at the time the photographs were shown to the witness to have her identify which of the individuals she recalls being at the party rather than to identify her alleged attackers.” Yet that photo array took place at the police station, and was videotaped. The six previous photo arrays, which loosely conformed to DPD guidelines and sought to have Mangum identify her “attackers,” were not videotaped. Wouldn’t common sense, if not good police practice, suggest that videotaping lineups designed to produce suspects is more important than videotaping lineups ostensibly designed to produce witnesses? If so, why did the DPD follow the reverse practice in this case?
2.) How many other cases since February 2006 have indictments been made on lineups that did not conform to the provisions of G.O. 4077, which requires five filler photos per suspect?
3.) At least three people that the police knew attended the party (Devon Sherwood and two white non-lacrosse players) were not included in the April 4 lineup. If the goal of that lineup was simply to identify witnesses, why would the DPD confine the lineup to suspects?
4.) At no point before obtaining the first two indictments was Kim Roberts shown the April 4 photo array. If the goal of that lineup was simply to identify witnesses, why did the DPD not show the lineup to Roberts as well as Mangum?
5.) On March 16 and March 21, Mangum already had been shown the photographs of 36 lacrosse players. She had recognized four with 100 percent certainty as attending the party, and one (Reade Seligmann) with 70 percent certainty. Why did police believe that two weeks later, her memory would suddenly improve if shown photos of the same 36 people?
Disinclination to Examine Exculpatory Evidence
1.) The attorney general’s report was clear-cut: the meetings between the special prosecutors and Mangum were “apparently the first time these questions of inconsistencies were asked formally.” Why did the police never ask Mangum any hard questions about discrepancies in her multiple statements?
2.) Why did the DPD never attempt to determine the identities of the other male DNA found on Mangum?
3.) In Mangum’s April 6 version of events (the one on which indictments were based), she listed Kim Roberts as a witness to the start of the crime. Roberts mentioned no such thing in her March 22 statement to police. Why wasn’t Roberts called in for additional questioning in the 11 days between Mangum’s statement and the next meeting of the grand jury?
4.) In Mangum’s April 6 version of events (the one on which indictments were based), she listed six “attackers”—the three who “attacked” her, and the three who tore Kim Roberts away from her at the bathroom door, which made them accomplices to the crime. Why was Roberts never asked about the identity of these three people—or did the police simply not believe Mangum’s tale?
5.) If the police were so interested in obtaining exculpatory evidence, why did they never interview the person who conducted the medical exam, Dr. Julie Manly?
6.) Why, after obtaining access to the captains’ e-mail accounts on March 16, did the police not complete their examination of the captains’ e-mails before arrests were made in the case?
1.) Was Sgt. Gottlieb’s “straight-from-memory” report consistent with DPD policy? In how many other cases in the last five years has the lead investigator produced a “straight-from-memory” report bolstered by no contemporaneous notes?
2.) The Baker/Chalmers report repeatedly uses the adjective “typical” in describing the DPD’s handling of this case. The Attorney General’s announcement made clear that no probable cause existed to seek indictments in the case. Is it “typical” for the DPD to endorse indictments without probable cause?
3.) Was the interaction between DPD officers and SANE nurse-in-training Tara Levicy “typical” of how the DPD handles rape cases?
4.) The Baker/Chalmers report made clear that at least until March 21, 2006, the DPD accepted as valid Mangum’s original claim that the attackers were named Matt, Adam, and Brett. Yet in the March 23 non-testimonial order, Officer Himan affirmed that evidence existed that the players used first-name aliases at the party. What evidence emerged between March 21, when police treated Mangum’s Adam/Matt/Brett story as valid, and March 23, when police no longer treated the claim as valid, to convince the police that first-name aliases were used at the party?
5.) Why did the police not take a statement from Mangum on March 16, and instead wait nearly three additional weeks to do so?
6.) When and how did the police clear Kim Roberts as a suspect for robbery, as Mangum repeatedly alleged in her early statements?
7.) Why did the DPD apparently learn from the media of Mangum’s previous allegation of a three-man gang rape?
8.) On what basis did Cpl. David Addison make repeated false statements to the press about the nature of the evidence and the investigation between March 24 and March 27? Has Cpl. Addison been disciplined for his conduct?
9.) In her March 22 statement to police, Kim Roberts admitted that she made the first 911 call, and that she had not been honest about the background of her decision to call. On what basis did DPD spokesperson Kammie Michael give false statements to the press on March 28-29, to the effect that police knew Roberts did not make the first 911 call?
10.) In his report, Police Chief Chalmers stated that police accepted the April 4 lineup because “investigators hoped this [procedure] would develop some leads, such as potential witnesses, for them, since those initially developed in the case were becoming exhausted.” At that time, the police still hadn’t spoken to Crystal Mangum’s two “drivers.” Nor had they tracked down in any way what she had done in the 72 hours before the lacrosse party. Did police consider these avenues of exploration insignificant? Did police find it at all unusual that a woman with no apparent means of financial support had two private “drivers”?
11.) In his report, Police Chief Chalmers concedes that no member of the DPD could ever recall a DA investigator behaving as Linwood Wilson did in this case. Then, in the next sentence, Chalmers stated that
1.) In a case with no physical evidence, no corroborating witnesses, and an accuser who constantly shifted her story, any police force interested in “discovering the truth” would have pressed Mangum on her inconsistencies before moving forward. Yet not only did the DPD fail to do so, but Baker publicly asserted that this matter was no problem. On May 10, 2006, the city manager stated, “I’ve had a lot of conversations with the investigators in this case and with officials at Duke, and at no time did anyone indicate the accuser changed her story. If that were true, I'm sure someone would have mentioned it to
Mangum, we know now, never told the same story twice. It appears, therefore, that either: (a) Baker was lied to by police officers; or (b) Baker himself misled the public. Which of the two options occurred?
2.) On March 31, Mike Nifong instructed police to violate their own procedures and construct a lineup confined to the publicly identified suspects in the case—the 46 white lacrosse players. Yet both Baker and Chalmers denied that Nifong usurped control of the investigation. What of Gottlieb’s statement that he was ordered to report to Nifong for direction after March 24, 2006; or the evidence presented by the N&O that the Durham Police did just that; or the DPD’s decision to accept Nifong’s instructions without apparent dissent?
Duke law professor Jim Coleman correctly identified the basic problem of the report: “They admit the procedure was inappropriate, and they didn’t do anything to fix the problem . . . It seems designed to respond to the most criticized aspects of the case. It was a useless exercise, not worth whatever effort they put into it.” The City Council should hold Baker and Chalmers accountable.