[Update III, 1.45pm: I emailed both of the listed student organizers for the event, asking if they would share their rationale for inviting someone whose false claims initiated a case of massive prosecutorial misconduct to speak at event supposedly highlighting the difficulties that NC minorities have experienced with prosecutorial misconduct. Neither student replied.
[Update, II, 7.01pm: Chris Halkides attended the talk last night, and posts his reflections at View-from-Wilmington. While you're there, I strongly recommend taking a look at his critique of Robert O'Neill's analysis of how Duke's faculty responded to the case.
[Update, 11.59am: A few other attendees have posted their notes on the event in the comments section, including items from the Q&A with Ed Clark; my thanks to all. In addition, the Daily Tar Heel story on the event says that Mangum "was especially bothered by a news segment showing her dancing at a bar, which she said the media falsely stated was two days* after the alleged rape." I can't say that I read everything published about the case, but I did read an awful lot--and I cannot recall a single article that claimed the video of Mangum dancing at the strip club "was two days after the alleged rape." (The video took place on March 25, 2006, at about the same time as the 'candelight vigil' protest.) But, as we know, Ms. Mangum has serious psychological problems, and a tendency to invent things.
Additionally, DTH reports that "due to an appointment, Mangum had to leave before the question and answer session of the event." I will leave it to others to determine what type of "appointment" Ms. Mangum would need to reach at 7.30 in the evening wearing a pink ball cap, an Old Navy hoodie and jeans.]
At the Liestoppers forum, Walt-in-Durham has a detailed rundown of Crystal Mangum’s appearance tonight at UNC. As I have noted previously, it is mindboggling that an academic institution would invite someone who the state AG had, with copious evidence, deemed a false accuser and not allow her to be questioned on the myriad contradictions in her story. It is all the more mindboggling that the only reason for this refusal to allow questions was to prevent the false accuser from saying something that could open her to a lawsuit.
I should note, in addition, that Mangum’s p.r. representative had similarly informed me of the media difficulties that the false accuser had in promoting her book. As I told him at the time, it’s my sense that most media organizations will not put on the air someone whose assertions they know to be false, if only to avoid massive legal liability.
Below is an excerpt from Walt’s rundown; the full version, with an excellent graphic, is now at the Liestoppers homepage:
After the Ed Clark monologue, he introduced Crystal. But, he immediately launched into a vigorous narrative, again rehearsed, about how the CBS show 60 Minutes would not pay for Crystal’s interview and he claimed to have a copy of an email from CBS saying that one of the families had total access to 60 Minutes and they would bury Mike Nifong. He continued on that HBO had been in contact with him about interviewing Crystal and doing a promotion for the book. He then complained that HBO had a line producer call to kill the project. They pushed back the publication date while they hunted for another media outlet for the launch. Then he claimed that the NBC Today Show sent a vice president, and a camera crew to interview Crystal. The NBC crew allegedly followed her around North Carolina Central’s campus, talked to her Pastor, family and friends. She gave them a four hour interview where they could and did ask any questions. Clark never disclosed the questions. According to Clark, the “contract” between NBC and Crystal would have her on the Today Show, Dateline, MSNBC and CNBC all on the day the book launched. Again a “line producer,” not the VP or producer they had met, called to tell them the promotion was off and the book launched without a major network availability. After Clark’s recitation of his difficulties launching the book, Crystal Gail Mangum spoke.
She opened immediately by stating unequivocally that she was raped. She did not name names though. She did mention Duke Lacrosse in the same general time frame, but it seemed like they were being careful not to make too close a linkage between the two. She also claimed that she had never been heard. She claimed that on the night she was “raped” she was not on medications. She claimed that the defense team had her medical records and was taking a whole year’s worth of medications and claimed that she was on them the night of the “rape”. Crystal then described some symptoms of post traumatic stress disorder that she suffered, and closed with a pitch for the book.
*--DTH reported "two hours," but two DIW readers at the event recalled that Mangum said "two days."