Thursday, October 23, 2008


A few things in the lacrosse case have been certain. Former lawyer Mike Nifong would violate the Bar’s ethics rules whenever presented with the opportunity. Group of 88 leader Wahneema Lubiano’s “forthcoming” books will still be “forthcoming.” And serial fabricator Crystal Mangum—the woman who could never tell the same story twice—will continue to fabricate.

At one level, it should come as no surprise to see Mangum’s fabricating today—in the three released chapters of her “invent-all” memoir, or in a treacly morning press conference. At another level, however, the performance was shameless—this woman whose lies caused so much harm lacks the decency not to publicly offer new lies.

As Joe Cheshire correctly noted, “Her press conference and her continued assertion that an assault happened is really pathetic . . . She’s clearly doing this to make money. By continuing to lie, she makes everything in the book, everything she says, a lie.”

Three chapters of the “invent-all” memoir have been released; here’s a summary of the peculiar tales offered by Mangum and co-author Ed Clark, who the N&O delicately describes as “a self-employed publicist.”

The Big Lie

At her press gala, Mangum affirmed, “I am still claiming that a sexual assault happened . . . [her story] has never changed.”

It’s worth reiterating, I suppose, that Mangum never even told the same story twice, much less consistently. Among the changes:

--Mangum variously claimed that there were 20, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, or zero “rapists.”

--Mangum variously claimed that Kim Roberts, the second dancer, was an accomplice in the attack on her, a neutral bystander, or the victim of a “rape” by three other lacrosse players.

--Mangum originally asserted that the “rape” occurred in a manner consistent with the normal laws of physics, only to conclude the case by describing an “attack” while she was being suspended in mid-air (just after, it should be noted, she was chatting with her father on the phone during her exotic dance and even as one of her “attackers” was chatting on the phone with his girlfriend).

But the serial fabricator asserts that her story “has never changed.”

The “Star Student”

Mangum, Clark writes, “could talk about news events, politics, and sophisticated concepts in psychology.”

Indeed. And Mike Nifong is in line to become the nation’s next Supreme Court Justice.

In another factual whopper, Clark assures readers that Mangum has never really had a problem with drug abuse.

This is, of course, the same Crystal Mangum who was on several drugs during her final interview with the special prosecutor, and who seemed to be "hospital shopping" early in the case to get some additional Percocet from UNC Hospital.

Press Conference Bizarro World

Mangum unleashed a howler at the press conference, asserting that she had decided to write her "invent-all" memoir because she hadn't had a chance to tell her story.

This is, of course, the same Crystal Mangum who was sought for an interview by 60 Minutes, ABC's Law & Justice Unit, the AP, the N&O, and the Herald-Sun, among other media sources.

She also hinted that she never had an opportunity to tell her side of the story--even though she was repeatedly interviewed by the special prosecutors.

In the event, she had little interest in telling her side of the story at the press conference, declining to answer such basic factual questions as how often she met with Mike Nifong.

The Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy

Writes Clark,

I began to notice most of [Sean Hannity’s] rants were identical to [those of: sic] people such as Internet columnists Michael Gaynor, Stuart Taylor, and K.C. [sic] Johnson. I found it amazing that these non-local people invested so much time and energy on the case . . . A group of right-wing bloggers, . . . the people who peddled the libelous and slanderous stories about Crystal are the same people who have been behind the Terry Schiavo case and have worked on such causes as the Linda Tripp defense fund.

Just to correct the record—since I’m sure Clark wouldn’t knowingly include false information in his product:

Stuart formerly wrote for the New York Times (he was nominated for a Pulitzer) and currently writes for National Journal, a high-brow Washington publication that focuses on politics and public policy. Neither the NJ nor the Times are “internet” publications.

As for me: I opposed the Clinton impeachment, consider Linda Tripp a pathetic person with whose defense fund I had no involvement, and strongly opposed the Bush administration’s attempts to intervene in the Schiavo affair, which I viewed as emblematic of the dangerous influence of the GOP’s Christianist wing. Few people would describe as “right-wing” someone who publicly supports Barack Obama, abortion rights, and gay marriage—but perhaps Clark shares the Group of 88’s definition of “right-wing.”

Clark is, however, absolutely right in saying that I do not live in Durham. I congratulate him on getting something accurate in this passage.

The Race Card

Clark unsurprisingly plays the race card, suggesting that those who contended that (white male) Mike Nifong violated prosecutorial ethics or (white male) Mark Gottlieb violated normal police procedures were racists determined to uphold the position of white males.

Moreover, Clark contends, “hundreds” of prosecutors do what Nifong did, and go without punishment. He doesn’t list any of these prosecutors.

On the other side, he suggests, Mangum never employed emotion, and only wanted to get the facts out. The result, he suggests: “Whenever anyone wants to discuss the merits of the case, no one can really remember any of the facts.”

This claim is almost hilarious: if nothing else, those critical of Nifong were swimming in facts.

Clark continues with an even more astonishing assertion: “The weak link for the prosecution . . . was the accuser’s life story and not the facts of the case.” This attempt to rewrite history might even make the Group of 88 blush. Of course, the “weak link for the prosecution” was that Nifong had no “facts,” and constantly violated ethics rules to prop up his non-existent case. Mangum’s “life story” played almost no role in the defense presentations to the court in 2006.

Coming Clean?

Now that Mangum has publicly challenged the conclusions of the Attorney General’s report, will she finally release her psychological case file, so that readers of her “invent-all memoir” can evaluate her credibility?

For instance: has Mangum ever falsely accused anyone else—including medical personnel—of a violent crime?

When was Mangum first prescribed anti-psychotic medication—and was she taking her medication regularly in spring 2006?

Does Mangum have a history of hearing voices that order her what to do, or other symptoms associated with psychotic behavior?

When did Mangum first tell the DPD or Nifong of her serious psychological problems?

Clark asserts that the full Mangum Opus will be available tomorrow. I’ll review it when it appears.


Anonymous said...

Forget her voluntarily releasing her records. She needs to arrested and prosecuted. She needs to be found guilty and pay for her crimes against the innocent. If she pleads not guilty by reason of insanity, fine at least she will be monitored and her credibility will be shot.

BillyB said...

I truly believe that now, since Mrs. Mangum claims she has no mental problems or drug use, she should be charged with filing a false police report. She needs to be convicted of some offense related to the case so she can't profit from it.

Archivist said...

Perhaps now it is time to actually charge her with filing a false report -- since, you know, she's so lucid and everything. Wouldn't we all love to see her do a year or two in prison?

mac said...

Here we go again.

Anonymous said...

It is now past time for Roy Cooper to charge this person with filing a false police report. The Governor's race is not for at least four more years Roy, do the right thing.

Anonymous said...

IIRC, filing a false police report in North Carolina can get you all of $1000 fine and 200 hours of community service, max (unless the law has recently changed).

Using the 911 number for something other than an emergency call (or for a phony emergency call) can get you more than that.

However, there is probably also a statue of limitations on these things.

If she was supported by any government money (as, from the Violence Against Women Act, or a Victims Compensation Fund) on a false basis, she should be forced to repay the support money--but don't expect any government official to go after it.

Anonymous said...

There is an old saying in Maryland - "You can't fix stupid." Magnum would have been better served to keep her mouth shut instead of committing libel and let this die. I have a funny feeling she will not be enjoying the ill-gotten gains she may earn from this work of fiction for long.

As for Clark, he just made himself a co-consirator and party at suit.

Keep them under your gaze, KC, well done.


Anonymous said...

Does this mean that Jesse Jackson will be freed from his commitment to pay for Mangum's law school education once this book hits the best-seller list?

Anonymous said...

Is Clark a Communist?

Anonymous said...

What about all that stuff about a CNN interview ? Is it possible that was true ? and if it is - why would it not have been aired ?

I'm suspicous.

Anonymous said...

The art work seems to be Kara Walker. Below is a link to an article about the exhibit of her work, which I saw, at the Whitney.

Ms. Walker's work is a combustible collection of racial stereotypes portrayed in exquisite black and white cutouts.


PS I concur with Esquire. Yet another lawsuit seems to be in the offing.

Anonymous said...

CGM is in way over her head this time.
From Ap Sports:

"For 2 1/2 years, this woman has attempted to destroy Reade's life,'' Cooney said. "We aim to put a stop to it.''

"No crime of any kind took place involving Ms. Mangum or any member of the Duke men's lacrosse team. We are presently evaluating all available legal options. If Ms. Mangum and those associated with her continue to slander Reade, we will have no choice and will not hesitate to utilize these options.''

If CSM and her "Pimp" don't think Reade's attonery is serious she better think again.

Anonymous said...

844 pm-
About CNN refusing to publish her interview....

LieStoppers says that she wanted to be paid for the CNN interview and when they refused to pay, it did not get aired.

Anonymous said...

If Obama gets elected, do you think this will have an effect on this case?

Debrah said...

What fresh hell is this?

Here Anne Blythe has a little update on this horror show.

She even has the gall to mention the horrific Samiha Khanna "interview" with Mangum.

David Rudolf is quoted here saying that he will be ready to take legal action against Mangum and friends.

He really must do that.

Rudolf has the type of personality needed for this situation. He goes for the jugular in the courtroom and isn't encumbered by the notion of keeping the natives in Durham happy inside their mint julep antebellum blues.

Moreover, he really.....really..... doesn't like the DPD and is familiar with their corrupt practices.

That "press conference" was more than pathetic.

It was unworldly in its baseness.

Isn't the guy who owns the aforementioned Know Book Store a member of the area New Black Panthers?

If so, then he most likely had something to do with that group descending on the town and threatening the lacrosse players' lives in the Spring of 2006.

The only cure for this cancer is for the defense lawyers to immediately make Mangum's records and files public.

It's way past time for justice to be served in this never-ending saga.


Then do

Debrah said...

The Herald Sun's review of this masterpiece of a human being:

Duke rape accuser sticks to her story

By Dan E. Way : The Herald-Sun
Oct 24, 2008

DURHAM -- "Yes, I am still claiming that a sexual assault happened," Crystal Mangum, the woman who falsely accused three Duke lacrosse players of rape, said Thursday while announcing the release of her memoirs.

That echoed a passage in "The Last Dance for Grace," a life story of sex abuse, drug use, family and joys: "I want to assert, without equivocation, that I was assaulted" at the lacrosse party, she wrote.

Thursday's event, at The Know Bookstore on Fayetteville Street, just a few blocks from the N.C. Central University campus from which she graduated with honors in the spring, was her first known public appearance other than a classroom talk at N.C. A&T University in April.

The former escort service stripper did not say who committed the sex crimes she alleges or the nature of the attack. Nor did she refer to the near total lack of evidence to bolster her claim.

"I have no comments about the details of the case" and whether the men she accused previously -- Reade Seligmann, David Evans and Collin Finnerty -- were the target of her latest accusation, she said.

Attorneys James P. Cooney III, Richard Emery and David Rudolf scoffed at Mangum's claims.

"We are presently evaluating all available legal options. If Ms. Mangum and those associated with her continue to slander Reade, we will [have] no choice and will not hesitate to utilize those options," the lawyers for Seligmann said in a prepared statement.

Mangum's false allegations of a rape at 610 N. Buchanan Blvd., at a party held by the Duke men's lacrosse team, set off a national furor in March 2006. Cries of racism, sexism and elitism boiled up against the players.

Before it was over, state Attorney General Roy Cooper declared the men innocent, the charges baseless and Durham District Attorney Mike Nifong a rogue prosecutor. Nifong was disbarred for his abuse of power in the case and spent a night in jail for lying to a judge.

"I didn't find out about the dismissal of the charge until I watched it" on television, Mangum said.

Mangum said "a lot of things went wrong in my case." She lashed out at a Durham police officer who said she changed her story three times. "I would like to talk to that officer."

But a report by two special prosecutors in the Attorney General's Office also concluded Mangum had "insurmountable credibility issues," in large part because "her proposed testimony about critical events changed whenever it was demonstrated that what she was saying could not be accurate."

On Thursday, Mangum also criticized the media, saying, "No one has ever offered to take a statement from me that came from me. Everything was he-said, she-said." Media representatives present expressed puzzlement, noting they tried for two years to get an interview with Mangum.

Mangum said that it is important for people to hear her account of that night in the lacrosse house.

"I'm a real person. I have real feelings," she said. "I'm not just someone who tried to frame someone who was innocent of sexual assault."

"The writing of the book was the start of my closure," Mangum said. "In order to go on with my life, I need to use my experience and what I have learned in order to help other people. ... I don't mind being a sacrifice."

Her future, she said, is bright.

"Eventually, I'll receive my Ph.D, , hopefully from the University of Georgia, and open up a group home" for children, she said.

Debrah said...

This Ed Clark person is basically a total moron.

He's an example of the kinds of people to whom charlatans like Timothy Tyson play for a living.

Very insular and bigoted.

Views all of life through a prism that suggests it's a legitimate lifestyle to play "victim" and "take" endlessly from society.

And if that square box won't fit into the round hole.......

.....then lie!

I truly believe that this mentality is a sickness with no cure.

Some people---nay, many! people---get high off on this kind of sideshow.

And it permeates even the most benign milieu.

For example, in the song below you think you've got a cool vibe going on.

Kind of a funky groove.......until you hear these lyrics right in the middle of the song:

"the white knight's dark obsession"

And I thought it was going to be about the "liberation" of love.


As long as some people continue to have no shame, no pride, and no conscience, the race-hustlers will continue on with their hit parade.

bill anderson said...

Regarding the CNN interview, I would say that she most likely was so incoherent that the sponsors of Nancy Grace realized that it would make their rush to judgment look even more stupid.

Don't forget that Mangum took thousands of dollars from a state "victims' fund." To take that much money under false pretenses is a felony. Forget the "filing a false report" charges; she is guilty of financial fraud.

Nothing will happen to her, however, as Al McSurely and the North Carolina NAACP are the ones in the background pushing this whole thing. The NAACP invested a lot of "moral capital" in this case, and pulled out all stops to get it to a trial and conviction.

William Barber and McSurely were NOT happy when Cooper dropped the charges, and my sense is that he gave the "innocent" declaration only after he had cut some political deals in the background. I suspect that the NAACP had warned him that if he were to pursue Crystal, Nifong, Levicy and the others in criminal proceedings, that the NAACP would work against his re-election and would stand in the way of his future political ambitions.

Look, if McSurely, Cash Michael, and Barber could find a way to reinstate the rape charges, they would do it in a heartbeat. All of them KNOW the charges were and are a lie, but they are political animals and to them, if a lie is politically useful, they will pursue it.

Anonymous said...

My favorite: There are 2 video clips of her press conference on, and about 7 minutes into the first one, her eyes start darting around all crazy, and we find out why her publicist has been stepping in front of her and hogging the microphones.

She says that she has NEVER given ANY STATEMENT about what happened that night. Nobbody ever asked her for a statement, she says! "I understand there's a policeman who claims I gave 3 statements," she opines, "but I would like to talk to that policeman sometime."

That's rich. Imagine if a jury in the civil case were stupid enough to believe that insanity, how devastating that is for the City of Durham. The police completely invented her claims -- just made-up a story for her. Picked her out of the blue, I guess, as someone they could attribute false claims to. Wow!

As long as the cops were completely inventing her statements instead of asking her what happened -- yeah, right -- one wonders why they wouldn't invent just one story, and have it be coherent. But there's no point in arguing this with a lunatic -- or her publicist.

gak said...

Anonymous said...
What about all that stuff about a CNN interview ? Is it possible that was true ? and if it is - why would it not have been aired ?

I'm suspicous.

10/23/08 8:44 PM

Clark said Solidad O'brien came and did a sit down with Crystal. It never aired and he could not get an answer why. My guess is that the story she told O'Brien was so far from the facts that they, the news outlet, decided not to waste time with it.

I thought it was very interesting that a book launch would not have a book available to show. I called a lawyer last night and asked his opinion on it. He said he couldn't see anything that out of character about it. I think the press conf. was to test the waters to see if a law suit is coming. I wrote on another blog that it was my opinion that Crystal is a tool in Clark's tool box for making money. He strikes me as a hustler and she had a deer-in-the-headlights look as soon as she walked to the podium.

Just my thoughts


Anonymous said...

consider Linda Tripp a pathetic person

Just wondering why you felt the need to throw in this gratuitous slur rather than just admit the fact that you never contributed to her defense. It's my opinion that people like Tripp are part of the reason the lacrosse players' hoax was revealed. The clowns in the media are big on this "truth to power" bullshit until somebody, you know, actually does it.

Anonymous said...

TO 11:30 PM - thank you for explaining why CNN spiked the story - is there a source for that ? I keep looking on the CNN website - but to date they have no stories that use her name.

Anonymous said...

And the plot thickens....if Crystal really believes that these things (writing a book, having a press conference, etc.) are what is best for her then she is even crazier than we thought.

We all know the attorneys for the team will do everything within their power to make sure she never sees a dime from the book. Now she has inserted herself into the spotlight and made it much more difficult for anyone to employ her.

This woman is pure scum through and through.

Anonymous said...

So she wants to go to the University of Georgia? Wonder if Jesse is going to "buck up" for tuition.

One Spook said...

Bill Anderson writes @ 6:51 AM

Regarding the CNN interview, I would say that she [Mangum] most likely was so incoherent that the sponsors of Nancy Grace realized that it would make their rush to judgment look even more stupid."

Home Run.

Debrah writes @ 5:38 AM:

"The only cure for this cancer is for the defense lawyers to immediately make Mangum's records and files public.

Strike out, looking, with the bases loaded and two out.

If the "defense lawyers" immediately made whatever they have of Mangum's records public, which records are under a court seal, they would expose themselves to an action of Contempt of Court, among other things, and could potentially lose their licenses to practice law.

Bill's entire comment was excellent and deserves a re-read.

It is important to note that the chief way lawyers communicate is by telephone. If you think that Cooper's declaration of “innocent” and decision to not prosecute Mangum was prompted out of the goodness of his heart, think again.

He did not want to bring charges against Mangum, and I do not believe the families wanted to see criminal charges brought either, and they obviously didn't want to bring a civil suit against her, because they did not name Mangum in their existing civil suit.

Attorneys don't "sue" or "make records public” of their own accord.

Attorneys discuss options with their clients and it is the client's decision to sue. Records are made "public" at the discretion of the Court.

The families have to consider that bringing a suit against Mangum will, in effect, give Mangum her "day in court" --- an obvious charade that she and her other enablers seem to so desperately want.

There are inherent risks in doing that --- having to expend considerable expense and time to refute all of the lies and false "facts" from the delusional mind of Mangum and already at hand among the “something happened” crowd; the players would have to appear and once again disrupt their lives with this nonsense; and the entire hoax is again given a new life.

Some of you clamor for “justice” that in reality can only be described as “vengeance.” Debrah’s thoughtless remark I quoted above is but one example of that. Most courts do not look favorably upon vengeance as a goal. Vengeance as a goal in a lawsuit is as absurd as “Hope” is as a goal in a political campaign.

There is no question in my mind that Mangum continues to slander, and may now have libeled, the lacrosse players, yet I would not be surprised to see the families decline to add her to the existing civil suit.

One Spook

Gerald B. said...

I watched the press conference on WRAL's website. Ms. Mangum seemed to be upset that she never got to tell her side of the story in a court of law.

I bet she gets that chance soon!

Rob, UK said...

I have to laugh at the assertion by Clark that the interest in the case from "non locals" and their common themes in their coverage of the case indicated a right wing conspiracy.

That's right: pointing out glaring testimonial inconsistencies, pointing out massive process inconsistencies, pointing out forensic gaps and generally expressing amazement at clear abuses of power is "right wing". It couldn't possibly be about justice or principles, could it? Principles which nearly everyone would expect in an investigation irrespective of the apparent crime type or the victim/perpetrator demographics.

I lose the will to live when I hear "theories" like this.