In reviewing Cohan's oeuvre, Rabinowitz concludes:
In Mr. Cohan's fair-to-everyone tome, spoiled white males, arrogant athletes, the entitled affluent all prevailed against the forces of light. Against this golden-oldie pack of villains stood Mr. Nifong, a man of honor unable to succeed in his search for justice thanks to the deep pockets that paid for sharp lawyers. He wrote this book, the author told his WAMC interviewer, as a way of having the trial that was never allowed to take place.
To Mr. Cohan, apparently, true justice is served by allowing a prosecutor oblivious to ethical constraints to bring a groundless case in the hopes of winning a jury conviction. And by the writing of his book attempting to restore the taint of guilt and suspicion on three young men who had been cleared despite all Mr. Nifong's fraudulent effort. Mr. Cohan's grim refrain, "We will never know what happened in that bathroom"—a faithful image of the substance Mr. Nifong brought to his case—stands as a perfect tribute to that predecessor.Given how thoroughly Rabinowitz eviscerates Cohan's work, a reader might be tempted to show a smidgen of sympathy for the embattled author. Might be tempted, that is, until the reader recalls that Cohan wrote a book, and has spent the last month-plus on a publicity tour, seeking to cast aspersions on falsely accused people as he aggressively attempted to rehabilitate the reputation of a prosecutor whose ethical misconduct was notorious.
[Update, 1.15am: Indeed, Rabinowitz's column was quite timely. In his most recent press appearance, Cohan offered perhaps his most extreme commentary yet, telling CNN that "there is an incredible amount of evidence that something untoward happened in that bathroom . . . Who did it, when they did it, what they did is absolutely just still not clear." What this "incredible amount of evidence" might be must, it seems, remain a mystery, and CNN's Jake Tapper did not press him on the bizarre nature of this assertion, or why this mystery evidence didn't appear in the AG's report.
When Tapper asked whether the case was one of "misconduct" by Nifong, or "mistakes," Cohan replied, "Mistakes." Nifong's conviction of 27 of 32 counts of ethical misconduct apparently doesn't count to Cohan; and Tapper didn't challenge Cohan on this point. Indeed, Tapper didn't mention the specifics of Nifong's ethics charges at all. Did he even know about them?
Cohan also repeated his incorrect claim that each of the falsely accused players received $20 million from Duke; Tapper, reflecting his . . . hard-hitting . . . approach to journalism, responded to this assertion not by questioning it or asking for Cohan's source, but by near-exclaiming, "Each one got $20 million?!" The non-curious Tapper then expressed puzzlement as to how Duke did anything at all wrong--not mentioning Tara Levicy, or the Group of 88, or the administration's early response. An embarrassment of an interview, even by the low standards we have seen on the Cohan tour.]