Friday, September 28, 2007

Responsibilities of Prosecutors Panel

The big case-related name on this panel is one of the stars of the Nifong ethics trial, Charlotte ADA Marcia Goodenow. The panel also includes two former U.S. attorneys and the academic dean at BC Law School.

Tom Metzloff: what were lessons of Nifong case for prosecutors?

Lynch: balance between how to deal with press and how to uphold rules?
need for continual training of young prosecutors in dealing with press

Goodenow: criminal defendant has a right to be tried in the courtroom, and the media doesn't have a right to try them
clear that three falsely accused students were not presumed innocent by media

media and public have right to access to the courts--not to everything dealing with case

Connolly: most prosecutors do follow the rules
lesson of Nifong is that not everybody plays by those rules--could see this through video--"shocked at what he said" at NCCU forum; "embarrassed"--clear that there "are bad apples" among prosecutors

Cassidy: more lessons not learned from Nifong case than were learned: Nifong was going to be disbarred without improper statements to media because of other violations

contends that some of Nifong charged statements were permissible
such as: city of Durham won't tolerate such behavior; "victim" exhibited behavior consistent with sexual assault were acceptable

MN v. White decision--can't gag judicial candidates; does that apply to elected DA's as well?

Lynch: inappropriate to go after individual classes of people (ie--all blacks, or all Duke students)

Connolly: trying cases in media generally not good for case

Lynch: fear that all prosecutors have is that it's more than just Nifong

Cassidy: if there's a big settlement with Durham, this might make prosecutors more cautious in the future

Cassidy: AG Cooper's declaration of innocence was disrespectful to "victim"; several people in audience call out that there was no victim


gracie said...

I was impressed with Goodenow at the hearing (not because she was a woman) but because she was professional, straight forward, and managed to get a couple of zingers in.

Anonymous said...

What did Lynch mean by "individual classes?"

gs said...

I believe there were victims in the case, the 3 players as well as justice in general.

Durham needs to pay.

Anonymous said...

Explain Cassidy and the concept that AG Cooper's declaration of innocence was unfair to the false accuser. That comment should have had this person evicted.

Anonymous said...

Trial by media in America is the norm, NOT the exception. In the UK, for instance, the media isn't allowed to get away with all the pretrial BS you see in the States, like endless accusations thinly veiled with the use of the word "alleged", etc.,etc.,etc..
All this is justified by a flimsy, "right-to-know-everything", First Amendment logic, which in no way accounts for the massive assymetry existing between the defendant and the media.
Nifong's court isn't the only circus in town.

Anonymous said...

R. Michael Cassidy, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs at Boston College Law School calling Crystal a "Victim?" Wow, what an idiot!

She should be charged with the crime of filing a false police report!

One Spook said...

KC Live Blogs @ 4:00PM:

"Cassidy: AG Cooper's declaration of innocence was disrespectful to "victim"; several people in audience call out that there was no victim"

Presumably this was blather from R. Michael Cassidy, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Professor of Law, Boston College Law School?

Wow, what a Kodak Precious Moment for Cassidy and Boston College! Bravo to the good folks in the audience!

Let me ask here ... what do you all think that the false accuser would pick if given a choice between disrespect and ... uhhhh ... jail time?

One Spook

no justice, no peace said...

From Jay Nordlinger on NRO. One must assume that wearing a pair would increase ones odds of gaining admission to an elite University.

"This may be the most curious story you’ll read all fall — I mean, this. Nike has designed a special shoe for American Indians — “an effort aiming at promoting physical fitness in a population with high obesity rates.”

More of this story: “The Beaverton-based company says the Air Native N7 is designed with a larger fit for the distinct foot shape of American Indians, and has a culturally specific look. It will be distributed solely to American Indians . . .”

Why is the shoe called N7? The name “is a reference to the seventh generation theory, used by some tribes to look to the three generations preceding them for wisdom and the three generations ahead for their legacy.”

Now, the design of this shoe “features several ‘heritage callouts’ as one product manager described it, including sunrise to sunset to sunrise patterns on the tongue and heel of the shoe. Feather designs adorn the inside and stars are on the sole to represent the night sky.”

Anonymous said...

Re: "Cassidy: AG Cooper's declaration of innocence was disrespectful to "victim"; several people in audience call out that there was no victim"

Cassidy maybe correct because the goal of the AG of NC is NOT to seek justice, but rather to make false accusers feel loved and respected. Maybe Cooper can send the "victim" a note with hearts and flowers on my pretty pony stationery advising her that, notwithstanding clear evidence that she committed several crimes, she will not be charged with any and sign it "with love and respect, AG Cooper xoxoxoxoxo".


inman said...

The mere fact that someone who is respected for their intellectual ability can assert that:

AG "Cooper's declaration of innocence was disrespectful to "victim"

is astounding. It also reinforces my position that only if CMG is indicted on charges of filing a false report (and perhaps other charges) and subsequently convicted or judged mentally incompetent, will certain observers cease these ridiculous statements.

And if she is tried and found not guilty by other than reasons of insanity, I will eat crow and consider an exodus to Canada.

Anonymous said...

... "disrespectful" to the "victim"?

Has this guy been living under a rock for two years?

Anonymous said...

Is Cassidy a he or she? Both pronouns have been used.

Is "respect" a legal right?

If so, we have yet another violation of rights perpetrated on the INNOCENT Duke Lacross team players, and the INNOCENT Coach Pressler, who were certainly denied any simblance of "respect".

So... hmmmm. Maybe this law professor has now given us yet another dimension for further vindication of the REAL victims.

Disrespect. Yep. Seems like the victims of the hoax experienced it big time.

That was what this Cassidy person meant, right? Or did he/ she mean that only black female strippers deserve respect?

I'm having trouble processing this. So, does this Cassidy mean that if the AG had permitted the innocent young men and their already harrassed and harried families to face the additional ordeal of a trial, despite the lack of ANY evidence of a crime, it would have made Miz Crystal feel more RESPECTED ??? **** !!!!

Pleaze, Deborah, only you can find the words to handle this one!

bill anderson said...

Someone needs to explain to Mr. Cassidy that the only "victims" in this case were the lacrosse players and their families. Crystal was no victim:

1. She was looking for a dishonest payday ("I'm going to get paid by the white boys");
2. She was kept living in style most likely with federal funds via the Violence Against Women Act;
3. She lied to the end.

If Cassidy thinks that a liar is a victim, then he is not fit for whatever work he is doing -- except maybe cleaning toilets somewhere. I am tired of these "experts" who do not know squat.

M. Simon said...

Re: Cassidy,

Whatever happened was bad enough.

What didn't happen was worse.

Anonymous said...

What a remark? Did Cassidy appear all there?

Debrah said...

TO 11:30 PM--

Yes, there are many words one could use on the Cassidy legal expert; however, sharks don't insult lawyers. It's a professional courtesy.....

....even if they do display shades of the Duke Gang of 88 disease of distorted reality.

But Cassidy...after all that has gone down this past year....after all that the world knows to be the facts of this case, man......

Say What?

Anonymous said...

Regarding Cassidy's Comment: AG Cooper's declaration of innocence was disrespectful to "victim"?

Is he actually referring to Crystal Gail Mangum?

If so, all I can ask is the following: Is he serious? Is he really a lawyer?

He appears to have no regard for facts or reality. I know many in social sciences argue that reality is a social construct. However, I have have assumed that practicing lawyers must function in an environment that logically rejects this notion. Perhaps I am incorrect.

Debrah said...

That fine legal eagle R. Michael Cassidy.

Anonymous said...

Ha! you all are just shocked someone with legal knowledge disagrees with the defense spin and is exposing the pr campaign's lies againist Nifong. Cooper's actions were unprecedented and were disrespectful of the alleged victim whom he called a liar BUT COOPER WAS CAREFUL NOT TO PROSECUTE HER IN ANY WAY. The excuse he used was questionable as he had no current psychiatric examination proving that she is insane; Cooper and the other sp are not medically qualified to make any such statement. The Bar's actions were similarlty questionable and seemed politically motivated(it was controversial even in the Bar as the decision to have a hearing on Nifong won by only one vote!)

Those discrepancies would give anyone alone who was not hopelessly biased or for anyone with a brain a pause in accepting Cooper's verdict on the case and also the Bar's actions. The Bar's actions which were particularly unprecedented and smacked of a political manipulation engineered by the defense to "get Nifong" off the case. That was the defense master plan all along and this legal expert is just brave enough to say it in a public forum. Newsflash: many, many people did not fall for the defense b---s--- and figured out their motives, moves and manipulations from the beginning and realised they were going to fight going to court and they had decided to trash the victim and target Nifong in their attempt to pull off this plan. The strategy worked perfectly but they did not count on people who were either smart enough to figure it out and tell others in the community the situation. that is why many, many people in Durham do not believe Cooper, etc. I was in a bookstore the other day and KC's book was not only in the back but people were asking why it was on display and one woman was asked to leave for telling the owner to get that "trash" out of the store. These people were white so it is not only the black community that feels this way and the $30 million dollar thing only hurt the Lax team in public opinion. It also seems to have hurt KC's sales. The owner told me the book is not doing well at all.

Anonymous said...

Cassidy. Boston College. Hmmmm. I think that tells us something.

patrick said...

Re Cassidy:

Massachusetts is the state where the Amirault injustice took place and according to Dorothy Rabinowitz continues.

Perhaps Cassidy would have advised Nifong to put CGM on the stand clutching a teddy bear.

frances said...

1:31 Why waste your time writing such a lenghty rant? Anyone well informed enough to read DiW, knows it's all a crock.

It seems rather sad.

Anonymous said...

I doubt any response will convince you at this point, but I want to point out at least one aspect in which your analysis is way off: Your conclusion that because Cooper lacked a "current psychiatric examination" for Crystal Mangum, his stated reasons for not prosecuting here were a questionable excuse.

Cooper didn't need medical credentials or a psychiatric exam to make a determination about the likelihood of winning a case--the kind of decision prosecutors make every day. To prosecute Mangum for filing a false claim, he would need to prove, not just that her statements were false (which would have been easy, despite what the "something happened" diehards continue to think), but that she KNEW they were false.

Given that his own investigators said she appeared to believe each different version of her story as she was telling it (even though they contradicted each other), and that she had a documented history of psychiatric treatment, Cooper reasonably concluded that it might be hard to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Mangum knowingly and intentionally lied. This is a reasonable exercise of prosecutorial discretion, not an excuse--though it's unfortunate that it leaves room for sore losers to draw false conclusions.

patrick said...

For 1:31AM:

Oh that Durham rag. It's so elegant, it's so intelligent. (Apologies to T.S. Eliot)

"Cooper's actions were unprecedented and were disrespectful of the alleged victim whom he called a liar."

I don't recall him using that word. He was in fact much kinder to her than she deserved. But the word "liar" can be used in a merely descriptive sense, as in "one who lies." As one who lays bricks is ordinarily spoken of as a "bricklayer."

"he had no current psychiatric examination proving that she is insane."

Once on the Paris Metro my wife and I rode half way across the city with a fellow talking to his suitcase. He got off at our stop and we watched him walk away still talking to his suitcase. There may have been someone inside, but I think not. We think he was insane, but then we had "no current psychiatric examination" at hand. Perhaps Cooper and his staff after weeks of interviewing Miss Magnum came to a similar conclusion. And maybe that is why they were too kind to call her a "liar."

"they did not count on people who were either smart enough to figure it out and tell others in the community the situation."

1)I wonder why they didn't count on that?

2)"either" usually implies "or." Maybe you'll give us that in a future post.

"KC's book was not only in the back but people were asking why it was on display"

Where was that book exactly? Somewhere in Wonderland no doubt.

inman said...

It is deeply troubling that people like anonymous at 1:31 AM exist.

This is an example of selective preception with pre-ordained conclusions supported by assumptions and a convenient collection of disjointed facts, but unsupported by any critical analysis.

But then again, terminally retarded people are needed to provide balance to the bell curve.

Anonymous said...

1:31 is a fake. It's someone who is completely capable of rational thought, as well as normal grammar and spelling, deliberately affecting a belief in Mangum's victimhood and a co-morbid rambling style of discourse, in order to troll. It would be ridiculous to waste time with it when even its own writer doesn't seriously believe it.

Ralph Phelan said...

"R. Michael Cassidy, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Professor of Law, Boston College Law School"

Yet another reason to question the value of tenure and the wisdom of letting professors choose their own colleagues unsupervised.

scott said...

1:31 AM said ...

"These people were white so it is not only the black community that feels this way ..."

I don't recall any commenters on DIW at any time making a statement that ignorance such as yours was limited to the black community.

Peter Wood is white ...

Diane Nelson is white ...

Several people people who threw gasoline on the fire were white. Ignorance does not discriminate by race, color, gender, sexual persuasion or income level.

It also may or may not be true that UPI isn't doing well in Durham. But if it's not, maybe that's because the book has 400 pages of text and only 8 pages of pictures. Or maybe that's because some people living in Durham simply don't have the guts to face the truth about what their town represents.