After long ignoring the grossly unfair treatment of a resident of its state, Reade Seligmann, the Newark (N.J.) Star-Ledger weighed in this morning with a blistering editorial about Mike Nifong, whose behavior, the editors contend, can only be explained as “the product of incompetence, overzealousness or outright misconduct.”
The Star-Ledger contends that Nifong apparently forgot that “prosecutors are supposed to put justice first—not winning re-election.” The editorial runs through a list of Nifong’s misconduct, culminating with his entering into an agreement with Dr. Brian Meehan to intentionally withhold exculpatory DNA evidence from the defense.
As for now, the Star-Ledger demands that Nifong “be removed from the case,” and it concludes with an even stronger recommendation:
law allows the trial judge to drop charges, remove lawyers from a case and, in the extreme, remove a district attorney from office for “willful misconduct.” Serious consideration should be given to the latter. North Carolina
Three thousand miles away, the editorial board of the San Diego Union-Tribune reached a similar conclusion. The paper welcomed recent developments, wherein “the spotlight finally can shift to the most troubling behavior in this matter: the DA’s repellent assault on the civil rights of the Duke trio.”
The Union-Tribune editors understand the magnitude of Nifong’s misconduct, and what distinguishes his behavior from normal prosecutorial wrongdoing: “Among a stunning list of ethical transgressions, Nifong can be accused not just of withholding exculpatory evidence but of manufacturing damning evidence.”
The editors correctly recognize the key procedural flaw of the case: the April 4 lineup, and Nifong’s order to police that it be confined to lacrosse players. And as for Seligmann’s “airtight alibi”? Nifong “simply didn’t care.” The admirable conclusion:
This isn’t just bad judgment. It’s a shocking abuse of power. Given his plain motive – Nifong won re-election by depicting himself as the crusader who wouldn’t let privileged white kids get away with brutalizing a young black woman – it is also despicable in its raw demagoguery. All this is why we look forward to the Durham DA having his own day in court.
I hope everyone understands the meaning of a situation when editorial pages across the country are on the same page. The editorialists are much, much less united on the trial and execution of Saddam than they are on the antics of Michael Nifong.
Recently, I wrote an article comparing the Durham case to the case of the Scottsboro Boys. One of the things that occurred was that groups around the country (and outside the South) rallied in favor of the defendants and against their prosecution.
Here, we have editorial pages even more united than what we saw in 1931. Clearly, people are recognizing a total travesty of justice. Unfortunately, much of Durham, many members of the Duke faculty, and, of course, Nifong himself, either fail to recognize the situation or are convinced that they can buck the rest of the country and ramrod through a wrongful conviction.
Despite the rhetoric I am hearing from the NAACP -- "We are interested only in justice" -- the people with that organization are interested only in INJUSTICE. They understand the situation. The word on the street immediately was that Crystal was untrustworthy and almost certainly lying. The DNA and other physical and medical evidence demonstrated there was no rape, no assault, no nothing.
So, I hold that people who are demanding that a trial go forth are simply wanting a wrongful conviction for their own racist purposes. So be it. But I can assure all readers that there will be no trial, no conviction, and no one ever again will take Durham seriously. It remains to be seen if Duke ever regains its reputation.
Scottsboro still is living down the reputation it gained 70 years ago. My guess is that it will take even longer for Durham to recover.
The San Diego Union-Tribune has also killed him...
He didn't mean for this to happen. Initially, he was simply positioning himself as the super hero of justice trying to fight evil.
All with good intentions in mind. My goodness, a woman was gang raped and the people who witnessed it are keeping quiet. Not on his watch.
He really didn't intentionally set out to do wrong. He painted himself into a corner and got trapped into a situation where admitting you were wrong would be punished harsher by ALL of us versus letting the charges be dismissed on their own through the legal system.
Admit, if Nifong stepped up to the plate in the last few months with the whole, "I was wrong, I'm sorry and I'm trying to good now", you people would TEAR HIM TO SHREDS MERCILESSLY.
Wow! It's almost surreal. For so long no one listened, even after 60 minutes, there were only murmurs. The damn has finally broken and there is now no way for Nifong to fix it. Thank you KC, Liestoppers, Bill Anderson, JiNC,Johnsville, Crystalmess, Talkleft, Joseph Neff,Michael Gaynor, Friends of Duke, ALL OF THE AMAZING BLOG POSTERS, and Ed Bradley (may he rest in peace) there are so many of you who have made a difference. I know I'm missing people but you all have been tremendous. I'm just a regular mom and I'm so darn proud of you all!
And he would have deserved it.
That is why he has no real options.
Drop it and be liable in civil and criminal court.
Don't drop it and be liable in civil and criminal court.
I disagree, 2:54. What has angered people like me has been the total absence of conscience that this man has shown. His actions were not simply borne of overzealousness. If they were, and if he were to admit his wrongdoing, I think people would be more merciful than they are now.
Look, no matter what he says, the consistent string of Nifong actions have demonstrated that he has been interested in getting a conviction, not pursuing justice. There is a difference, even if you cannot recognize it.
I have been one of the persistent critics of this man for the past eight months, and I do not apologize for what I have written and spoken. If he were to back off now and admit his guilt, I can say for myself that I would be much more inclined to back off than I am when he insists -- against all evidence and logic -- that Reade, Collin, and David raped, assaulted, and kidnapped Crystal Mangum.
This is a lie, and a transparent one at that. The thing that has enraged me most has been the arrogant manner in which he and his followers have declared that THEY ARE THE LAW IN DURHAM, and that no one can do anything about it. While Nifong had the votes, that was fine, but obviously that is not the case anymore.
So, please do not insinuate that somehow we have driven Nifong to do these acts. He chose this route himself, and now he has to live with it.
Nifong deserves the harshest punishment for his criminal actions and conspiracy to frame innocent students.
Despite the rhetoric I am hearing from the NAACP -- "We are interested only in justice"
What they mean is just us. Instead of standing against this hoax, the NAACP and Their "observer" Prof. Joyner have attempted to go along with Nifong's frame up, simply because the accuser is black.
What a sorry organization they have become.
I must add one to your list. Free Republic was on this almost from the beginning.
Caught "McGlaughlin Group" last night. I don't have much use for Lawrence O'Donnell, but his statement last night was especially egregious. When asked his opinion on "The Most Overrated Story" of 2006, he responded: The Duke Rape Case.
"Let it play out," he said. "There's no need for examining it day to day."
No no no no no. A thousand times no. O'Donnell is a Washington insider who finds the whole affair boring, never mind the effect on these three young men.
This--once a dismissal comes, as it surely will--will be the bloggers' finest hour.
All of you: do not flag or fail. Keep up the pressure. Dismiss, dismiss, dismiss or let the heavens fall.
Does anyone have info about Victoria Peterson's last-ditch effort, reported in the Herald-Sun? Apparently she and unnamed other "citizens" have asked the Justice Dept. to conduct an investigation into whether the Duke lacrosse team violated the accuser's civil rights by using racial slurs and urging that Collin Finnerty be charged with a federal hate crime on the basis of the DC incident (which the Herald-Sun reports as involving a "gay man" even though the man himself said he was not actually gay--and local prosecutors told the judge the case was not a hate crime)? The latter is particularly ironic coming from Ms. Peterson.
JLS said ...
I agree Bill Anderson when I met one of your grad school colleagues and discovered he had some connection to Scottsboro, the Scottsboro boys was the first thing on my mind. When I evacuated up to your home town from a hurricane and went to NE AL for the first time one town I noticed on the map was Scottsboro.
Durham will be a long time living this down. Duke will struggle to rebuild its reputation unless they do something dramatic.
3:08 exactley, Nifong crossed the line and no one drove him to violate the law. He has an obligation to the constitution and to his position as an officer of the court to follow the law. He decided to venture outside the law to use this case for personal gain - and he did a fine job. That he will be sworn in Jan 2nd. is a travesty. That he used his position to try to railroad 3 honest students is a crime. That he used his position to financially ruin three families and the hopes of their children is beyond a crime. 2.54pm - I'd like to remind you that "The road to Hell is lined with good Intentions" - but I'm not sure that Nifong even had good intentions.
Bill - Among the authorities that has stood on the sidelines far too long is the National NAACP which has authority over local offices. Allowing Joyner to go too far - where the NAACP ends up being the only nationally recognized group clinging to Nifong at the bitter end in a top media story of reverse racism, criminal misconduct by law enforcement and state attorneys railroading the innocent could taint the whole NAACP and risk some of it's donors. They are already under scrutinity about tax exempt status for indidents where they appear to be heavily engaged in non-tax exempt activities as an auxiliary of the Democratic Party.
I believe national NAACP does not want to be seen standing & hugging Nifong and Wendy Murphy when the dust settles.
A local NAACP official in another state I know personally is very upset that the NC NAACP is still actively pushing the "accuser is right and Nifong is her champion" angle.
Anonymous 2:54 Admit, if Nifong stepped up to the plate in the last few months with the whole, "I was wrong, I'm sorry and I'm trying to good now", you people would TEAR HIM TO SHREDS MERCILESSLY.
No, you are coming from a position that Nifong has not engaged in a wide number of acts of misconduct, possibly criminal behavior. Merely that he was wrong, had good intentions, and should be forgiven if he just admits it, but won't because "unfair" people would not forgive but tear him to shreds.
Which entirely misses the point. This is not about how errors in judgement by an honest, ethical person caused harm - but of deliberate misconduct, violation of legal ethics his office charged him to maintain. Which were subverted for personal gain in using his prosecutorial powers for election rigging, maintaining power, salvaging his 30,000 dollar loan, possible fantasies of movie rights being sold later..and perhaps advancing a personal agenda he believed in (nail Duke, gain admiration and importance from others, advance progressive causes).
It's not a question of forgiving. Many can still see him as a poor flawed bastard in way over his head, much like skank Crystal Mangum is and be sorry for that..but still want him fully held to account for abuse of power, ethics violations, and possible criminal acts he committed along the way.
I'm 3:21, I now see this has been discussed in another thread, but I'd still like to know if anyone has additional info.
Sorry texasyank but the bloggers' finest hour was catching CBS using fake documents to smear a sitting president.
Still you are right a DC insider minimizing this is sad and this is one of blogdom's finest hours. One theme throughout all of these blog finest hours has been shining light on the press. It has been true here as the Herald and N&O have been in on this attempted lynching, it was true with CBS and it has been true with the false pictures from Lebonan this summer among many others blogdom finest hours.
Excuse me, you don't hide exculpatory evidence if you didn't mean for this to happen. If you are interested in the pursuit of justice you interview the accused and hear their sides of the story. You don't lie and lie to the public in order to be elected as District Attorney of Durham.
I only know what I read, but my guess is that she and Nifong (since they do keep in contact and she is a fervent supporter) are trying to head off an investigation from the DOJ. Maybe I am way off, but I don't think that Peterson has acted independently of Nifong.
Thus, while this whole thing seems to be ridiculous on its face, I cannot help but wonder if the DOJ HAS begun an investigation and Nifong is trying to make it look as though the people he has wrongfully prosecuted really are nothing but the second coming of the KKK and thus present a danger to the black community of Durham.
In other words, I cannot help but wonder if this action is being done to blunt an investigation. If that is true, then I would also say that the feds ARE investigating. Does anyone else think this might be the case?
I agree it is either happening or they are very concerned it will be soon. And absolutely they are working together...
This thought has been nagging at me for a while.....Why in the world would the AV suddenly decide that she wasn't sure if a penis was used? She would have had no knowledge of the NC law that a rape must involve the use of a penis....This was not a detail that would have been important to her (never mind the fact that she said multiple times that a penis definitely was used.) IMO this is just additional proof that Nifong is manipulating the evidence. His assistants had to specifically ask her "are you ABSOLUTELY sure a penis was used" in order to get her answer...and they probably asked more than once. She would never have offered that up on her own because she wouldn't have known it was so important. After all, not only is the timing suspicious, but she hasn't retracted her statement that a penis was used in her other orifices, so it isn't just that she is rethinking the details of the "assault."
It is so clear that Nifong realized he had a problem after Meehan's testimony, and came up with a plan. He sent his people out to just make sure the AV wasn't mistaken about what went into her vagina....of course he couldn't interview her because he cannot "know."
Bill: I agree. It's a lame attempt to muddle the waters, and give the H-S and others something anti-Lax to write or talk about, even if it's nonfactual nonsense. Don't think it will work, though--too little, too late.
The kicker regarding Victoria Peterson complaining about Duke "mishandling" rape claims by Duke students is that, from what I remember (having graduated from Duke a couple of years ago) is that from what was reported in the school newspaper (the claims did not get much play in the H-S) the perpetrators were Durhamites, not Duke students. Not always, but the attackers were usually described as being middle-aged and "non-Duke student like" (all of us being uber-wealthy, preppy, snobby, lily-white kids from Jersey or Connecticut). So I imagine if Duke pursued these claims against Durham residents, Peterson would be among the first to scream: 1) Duke/the accuser is being racist/classist against Durham residents, 2) we must presume innocence, or 3) that these is some conspiracy afoot. What a joke this woman is.
re: Peterson's DOJ complaint--since when are someone's civil right violated because someone called them a racist name? Or was that the Michael Richard's precedent?
I agree with 3:54. Nifong did not come up all of that honestly. He was trying to figure a way to keep this case going even after the evidence was blowing his theories apart.
I think that is a most important point. Somehow, I doubt Crystal understands NC law on that point, but Nifong is well aware of it. Unfortunately, they still would have to explain why there was no DNA after the allegedly forced oral sex.
Of course, there is one big explanation for all of this: a great big, lie.
I realize that the beginning of the end for nifong has begun..the sooner this clown swings, the better. We all have cause to feel a lot better today. But PLEASE..lets not forget that feckless, spineless dolt brodhead. It is going to be tough enough to salve some of Duke's reputation without this goon's continuing presence. He cannot be allowed to get away with flushing these men down the toilet.
Bill, I agree...it is a late, lame attempt to appear to be going on offense...as IF...
I have an interest in the inner dynamics of the sociopathic personality type. I have of my own theories. First of all, I believe that a key component is a very strong ability to focus their thoughts and awareness onto what they choose. That is why they are so comfortable ly-ing and why, if they are smart enough, can be very good at it.
In other words, they are not necessarily anti-social or even openly dishonest in day to day life. However, they think most other people are much less intelligent than they and that if necessary, they could con them any day.
They are able to wall off undesireable perceptions so well that they are often incompetent when dealing with "strategic" considerations despite seeming to be clever with small tactics. (Read L. Trotskis description of J. Stalin).
They cannot be reasoned with once they are engaged in a struggle, because they can un-know what you tell them, no matter how logical and true.
Once I saw Nifong ranting on TV with purely made up stories looking utterly convinced while simultaneousely refusing to listen to exculpatory evidence I felt a vibration in the air. My gut feeling at that point was that this saga would end only after extraordinary amounts of destruction had occurred. Do not expect Nifong to suddenly start acting normal as the vise keeps cranking around his body parts. Ignore his bullshit and just keep cranking. It is the only way. Not pretty, but true evil is like that.
[Admit, if Nifong stepped up to the plate in the last few months with the whole, "I was wrong, I'm sorry and I'm trying to good now", you people would TEAR HIM TO SHREDS MERCILESSLY.]
As parents, you spend most
of your lives raising your
kids and building up family
assets to help them out in the future and for your retirement. You take care of them when they're sick, help them when they're having problems, prepare them academically, spiritually and are there for them in good times and bad. After 18 years, you begin their launch into adulthood with college.
I would hope that any responsible parent, after spending a quarter of their projected lifetime in the works of raising children would appreciate how maddening it is that some government official, for what appears to be personal and selfish reasons, tries to destroy the life work of these parents.
Now if Nifong said I was wrong, I'm sorry, I'LL PAY YOUR LEGAL BILLS and I'll give you back a year of your life and give you back your lacrosse season and a shot at the 2006 title and make sure that
every citizen in Durham apologizes for any negative behaviours and thoughts to you then that's a start. But I would hope that everyone here discerned the character of this DA a long time ago to realize that it isn't in his character.
I'm glad that newspapers are piling on. Why aren't the politicians speaking out on this? What's John Edwards saying as this is his home state and his campaign just launched? Surely he's been asked about the case.
Mr. Nifong appeared to be really enjoying media attention in the beginning. Who can forget him demonstrating a choke hold on national TV? Anyone has any idea how he came up with it? He claimed he did not talk to Precious about the details of the case. How did he come up with a choke hold to demonstrate how it was done?
I think hman makes a very good point. Also, judging from the N&O portrayal of him that supposedly was flattering, we see the picture of a megalomaniac. His mood swings, his rants, his profane outbursts, and his drive to win, win, win tells me that this is a very dangerous person.
These are the personality types that ruin lives and if they have enough power, are able to get lots of people killed. Maybe we should be thankful that Mikey only is the king of Durham, and maybe he will not hold that crown very long.
We can be sure that Nifong is going to try to bully the judge, bully witnesses, bully the Bar Association, and bully anyone else he can. People like this are stopped only by cold, hard force. Nifong obviously does not have a conscience, given his calculating move when he dropped the rape charges. No, I believe that he KNOWS there was no rape, no assault, no attack, and no kidnapping.
But Mikey does not care. He just wants to win, and the only way to deal with someone like this is to win with overwhelming force and then drive (figuratively, of course) a stake into the heart of the beast.
JLS: you read my mind in that I thought, Which of the two, Fake TANG memos or Duke, is the bloggers' greatest moment?
I sided with Duke, barely, weighing how much the MSM would correct the original story and how much damage would be done.
But it's a close-run thing, I'll tell yah.
The point is that there now exists a mechanism by which people can make an end run around the MSM. I dealt with this phenomenon in a piece a while back on Lew Rockwell's site.
Mike is getting desperate and as such might self destruct. It would not surprise me. He is a national disgrace, a local disgrace and a disgrace to his family. What could he possibly look forward to after this travesty.
The book deal is out so probably a stint on Jerry Springer.
Do not expect Nifong to suddenly start acting normal as the vise keeps cranking around his body parts.
This is so true...he is not going to simply throw the towel in and accept that he did great wrong...nor will he appear contrite, and perhaps that will be his undoing, at least as far as the bar proceedings go...and as Bill says, thank God he is *only* king of Durham (not for long, though)...imagine him in charge of a military somewhere...megalomaniac, for sure...
My Bar friend at lunch, er drinks, told me that at least one of the 32 Bar Counselors has written the other Counselors and wants to amend the current complaint against Nifungu to include the DNA outrage. To include a new charge would require a majority of the Counselors to agree. His thought was that they will wait and issue a new complaint. Mikey's ship is sinking VERY fast.
I say again, THE LONG KNIVES ARE OUT!!
Ho Ho Ho is off to jail he goes!!
Michael 4:30 -
John Edwards, a lawyer, specialized in wrongful injury lawsuits, mostly medical malpractice. It's how he's made his fortune of more than $20 million. He also lives in Chapel Hill.
He wants to be President, to lead the country. Aside from many other flaws, as exposed in 2004, he has been dead silent as this morality play has unfolded. I think his lack of leadership here points out his unfitness for higher office. How can you let this hoax of a wrongful prosecution go on under your nose and then claim you'll do the right thing for the country when the tough decisions inevitably arise?
Who is he going to protect? His Democrat team mates, just as he has. The rest of us can forget it.
We haven't heard from him, and I'd bet we won't until long after this book is closed.
This is 3:21 again--re Bill Anderson's response to my question--
your idea about the Peterson complaint makes sense. Peterson et al. may hope to make the DOJ feel like they will be getting into the middle of a p***ing contest if they get involved--and I guess it's possible that tactic could work.
Bill Clinton was shrewd enough to take on the extreme black left in his so-called "Sister What's-Her-Name" speech.
If John Edwards is so afraid of Victoria Peterson that he cannot speak out against an obvious miscarriage of justice in his own back yard, then he really is not fit to be President of the United States. Speaking out on this issue would win him far more votes than he would lose, but Edwards is tone deaf. Oh, and I also predict that he will not even come close to winning the Democratic nomination in the summer of 2008.
(My guess, to paraphrase Lewis Lapham, is that any Democrat who is willing to spend the required number of nights in a Holiday Inn will be able to be elected the next president. But Edwards will not be that man, and he is blowing a golden opportunity just a few miles from his home. Tsk, tsk.)
I heard that Saddam's attorney is complaining that his client "was Nifonged."
There's an interesting
discussion on a board with those for civil rights and feminists arguing about the case at stranger.com
The folks for civil rights won the argument. But reading the arguments of the feminists revealed how little they know about the case. Not that that seemed to matter. Both of these groups are supposed to be allies.
I think John Edwards will not be asked about this...Somethinbg about the media not asking tough questions to Dems about rape accusations.
Remember a previous president was accused of rape, and Sam Donaldson asked the only question about it...it was either asked of Bill himself or of his press secretary (probably the latter) and it was kind of brushed aside...that must have satisfied the media...
So much for a slow news week!
I just posted a question on the Edwards web site on the matter. We'll see if I hear anything back from him.
The election is too far away to help get a dismissal but this would make a great topic for a primary debate.
I was 5:56...
Both parties are hesitant to speak out on certain groups (especially when it is not in support of the minority)...it is just the media seem to let some people off the hook with their questioning.
I hope I am wrong
I heard that Saddam's attorney is complaining that his client "was Nifonged."
heheheh, good one! ;>)
There are way too many comments here for reading, But I borrowed this link from Bill's latest writing, which is an article in USA today by Wendy "male=guilty" Murphy.
of interest in the 68 or so comments posted before they were shut off, 100% condemned Wendy's ability to actually read and comprehend what she did read. As well as a big smearing of spreading unfounded and denied rumors about direct payoffs in the millions to the stripper!
I for one hope that "being Nifonged" becomes as popular as Benidict Arnold's name is.
A town square hanging would do the rope a disservice! Being tared and feathered would be a very good start for him though!
What planet has Nifong lived on the past nine or so months?
How did he think this would turn out? Maybe he thought he could use it to help him win the election...but he must have realized there would need to be some "exit" strategy...
What does he really think when he's thinking about this...
Can you imagine his home life? How can his wife feel like he has any dignity...
I bet getting "Nifonged" will go on in our lexicon much like "Borked" does.
Seriously, what does this do for real rape victims who may have already have been concerned with stepping forward...that is one of the terrible repercussions (sp) of this
Michael has brought up an interesting situation, and one that not many people understand. In most instances, the feminists and blacks at best are very uneasy allies and often on the other side of the fence.
The vast majority of inter-racial rape accusations are of that black men being accused of raping white women. Naturally, the black community will side with the black males and the feminists with the white women, and the disputes can get pretty ugly.
The dynamics are even more strange when both the accuser and accused are black. Again, the black community generally will side with the males and the feminists (black and white) with the female. But if it is thought that the accuser is lying in a black/black situation, the attacks upon the accuser are far worse than anything we have seen in the Duke case.
Much of popular black rap music, as we know, is mysogynist and sometimes just outright awful. The "gangsta" lyrics speak about raping and killing "bitches and ho's" and the like. Thus, "protecting sisters" is not as important in the black community as the Durhamites would want us to believe, unless a racial angle can be played.
I think I can say without any reservation that had Crystal accused black males of the rape, and the exculpatory evidence was what we have seen in the Duke case, there is no doubt that almost the entire black community would have supported the men. Furthermore, Crystal would have been verbally assaulted in a way that we have not seen in this particular case -- no matter what Yolanda or "Justice58" might say.
Crystal would have been denounced as a liar, a "ho," and about everything else. Believe me, this case would not have lasted 10 minutes.
However, the racial situation being what it is, the black community felt obligated to back Crystal. This meant the NAACP selling whatever part of its soul was left, and the black ministers promoting lies, but everyone who was on Crystal's side continued to promote the sham because to do otherwise would have been seen as being disloyal to racial solidarity.
As a member of an NCAA-championship track team with both black and white members, I saw the issue of racial solidarity firsthand. We had one situation in which the blacks were demanding an all-black relay even though we had at least one white sprinter who was in our top four. The turmoil over the whole thing almost cost us the national championship.
As a competitive athlete, I could not understand why they did not want the best relay team, as opposed to including a black sprinter who really was not very good (and was a jerk, to boot). But there it was, and the results almost were disastrous. I realized that the whites on the team did not really look at issues like racial solidarity. Most relay teams for which I ran had blacks and whites, and it never would have occurred to me that we needed to have an all-white two-mile relay team or anything like that. So, the cultural and racial gap simply was much bigger than I realized.
Because of the racial dynamics in this case, we saw a fairly rare alliance (in a rape case) between feminists and the blacks. Unfortunately, neither group wishes to admit to being wrong, so the case continues. And so do the lies. It is unfortunate, but there it is.
The DOJ red herring claim of civil rights abuse via racial epithets is Nifong's rehabilitation strategy set into motion.
Step "1", stay out of prison anyway he can.
Step "2", continue playing the AA community like a fiddle.
If he can retain support from the Black "leaders" of Durham - he's a 'lock' for an elected Office.
If you find it hard to believe, he can make a run for US Congress and bunk up in a DC condo with "Dollar Bill"Jefferson (LA) and Alcee Hastings (FL) -
Nobody should have any pity for Nifong. He had the ability to avoid any problems whatsoever by simply following well known rules. First, he could have honored his statement that the DNA would be conclusive. Second, he could have kept his mouth shut and avoided the type of political firestorm the compelled him to keep going (he benefitted or course) 3) he could have listened to the exculpatory evidence and, as he told the NY times recently in a transparent lie, he will go wherever the evidence goes 4) he could have used a proper line-up 5) he could have interviewed the accused 6) he could have complied with his discovery obligations (or if he is to be believed he could have read the file).
None of these obligations is hard to understand or unclear. He chose not to follow these rules. At one time, maybe early on, he may have believed that his rule breaking was morally justified. Once he met with Meehan and knew that other men's DNA was all over the alleged victim he became a criminal. that is because, as the enablers don't want to admit, WHILE IT IS VIRTUALLY IMPOSSIBLE THAT NO DNA WAS LEFT FOR SAMPLING A FEW HOURS AFTER THE ALLEGED ATTACK, IT IS COMPLETELY TOTALLY ONE HUNDRED PERCENT IMPOSSIBLE THAT THE FALSE ACCUSER WASHED OFF THE CELLS OF THE ATTACKER WHILE LEAVING THE CELLS OF OTHER PEOPLE BEHIND.
The only good news is that ethical prosecutors are appalled by his conduct and unethical prosecutors know that they can now be scrutinized in real time.
There's a humor piece at HARRY POTTER AND THE MAGICAL DNA for those so inclined.
Nifong may have thought their was a rape in the beginning, but he knew he had the wrong people when the DNA evidence came back.
Did he interview the AC about her lies?
Did he search for the owners of the DNA?
No, Nifong not only ignored the evidence of no rape, he covered it up.
Problems seem to be comming from everywhere for Nifong, but will he continue. He could hang on to the case until the Feb 5 date and the judge could and probably relieve him from his duties of prosecuting the case. A new prosecutor will ask for a postponement so he can familiarize him or her self, which will be granted. Or Crystal Mangum will be in the hospital and unable to testify, either case a postponement will be granted, again it is delay, delay, delay. When will this travisty end? If the judge did the right thing and throws out the illegal ID process, he could end it right there, but is he man enough to do the right thing. If the games continue, this may not come to trial, until the fall of 2007, which I believe would be a denial of a "right to a speedy trial".
No way in hell Nifong will not be replaced. The NC DAs sealed it. NO judge will leave him on the case, the DAs statements cover the judge for removing Nifong. Political a safe move for the judge.
I expect Nifong not to recuse himself. If he does, another DA will review the file and realize there is no evidence. Nifong wants to drag this out.
SO Feb 5 the judge removes Nifong from the case.
Of course Nifong could do the right thing and resign on Jan2 and not take the oath. lol
to gs at 841 (or attorneys):
Any chance the judge will act before February 5 if Nifong does not recuse himself? Otherwise these 3 young men are still in legal limbo.
from a non-lawyer
The Dukies lawyers have filed a motion to remove Nifong. The judge has not ruled on it. He most likely will rule on that Feb 5, but he could do it sooner.
Its unusual for judge to remove a prosecutor. But the Meehan DNA, the bar, the NC DAs and all the editorials give the judge political coverage to do so in this case.
My whole point is that Nifong will try to hold on until Feb 5. This will only delay the case even longer then "until spring". Nifong will also try to delay the NC Bar complaint, asking for continuance, in his hearing before the bar. There is nothing worse then a madman with the power and authority that NC has vested in him. The man is hanging on for dear life at this point and will do anything to save his career and pension.
WJD is right.
Nifong is in a delaying game. When he hands over his evidence file and a real DA investigates, one of two things will happen:
1 - The DA will see there is no evidence.
2 - The DA may find Nifong hid other evidence as he investigates.
Either way Nifong does not want anthor DA looking at his evidence. That is why he refused help from the NC DAs.
The Judge will hope Nifong recuse himself before Feb 5. He will remove Nifong, but hope Nifong does it himself. Nifong could recuse himself on Feb 2 (Fri) and the judge does not have to recuse Nifong, but Nifong got his delay.
From the H-S, letters to editor:
Nifong must be ousted
I am a former resident of Durham, and a former deputy sheriff (11 years). I cannot believe that the citizens of Durham are not outraged, and calling for a recall election of Mike Nifong. His handling of this case is beyond poor. He rushed to file charges before the case could be investigated properly.
Why? I believe the only reason was that the primary election was in sight, and Nifong clearly wanted some type of headline that he believed would put him over the top. Now, as the case is falling apart, it is obvious that there is no evidence to uphold any charges that are still pending.
Not only has Nifong used the office of district attorney for political gain, but ruined the lives of three innocent people. Do the right thing, Durham, get this guy out of office before more bad things happen. You could be next!
CHARLES W. NASH
December 28, 2006
Even if those occurred is there any reason to believe they were spoken by the 3 accused?
I think not.
If that is the correct how can these 3 alone be defs in a civil rights case?
The Racial epithets were spoken by a player at the party, and not the 3 Dukies. It was said in response ( about size) to a comment by the other dancer.
The gay bashing charges are a joke also, the Washington prosecutors have already started it was not a hate crime, the man is not gay, and Finnerty was punished for the fight.
Victoria Peterson's charge is like Nifong's evidence file, empty.
No attack on the AV, no civil rights charges.
One silly thing, I would sue the pennyless AV. I know she was nothing, but it would be a small moral victory and secondly, she may sell her story in the future. They should make sure she doesn't profit from her lies.
Hey you all these guys are guilty of all kinds of things. Language, assault, kidnapping and the list goes on. Nifong needs to stay on this case and put these criminals in jail where they belong.
Overall this case will be a stain on the entire state of North Carolina.
It is obvious to anyone who has followed this case that the entire political establishment of Durham is completely dysfunctional and race obsessed. Any parent, especially white ones, will have to think long and hard about sending one of their children to Duke. The Duke administration has proven that it's obsession with political correctness will trump its students every time.
The Durham police department obviously needs an overhaul. They have been a willing participant in this farce and have opened the door for truly guilty defendants to challenge their convictions based on the department’s malfeasance.
The governor of the state of NC has been utterly silent (as far as I can tell). He may not have statutory authority to remove Nifong, but that does not absolve him of his moral responsibility as the leader of his state to speak at what is obviously a gross injustice. He has proven himself to be a feckless coward. A shameful episode all the way around of which the fallout will be felt for years to come.
theman...You crack me up.
I just can't tell if you are serious or trying to be tongue-in-cheek. Can anyone help me out with this?
I have been told he (theman) is a troll in webspeak. Unfortunately I do not know what a troll is in this context.
NC will now clean house. NC dosn't want to be embarrassed by the Feds. They also don't want the Feds looking to hard at how things run in Durham. Who knows what the Feds would find?
They are a national laughing stock. What company would locate in Durham now? The people of NC Duke, and Durham may not realize it, but they are getting millions of dollars worth on bad publicity free of charge. It will take years to recover their reputations.
They will pounce on Nifong as a sacrificial lamb.
to 9:47pm, I am as serious as a heart attack, you people just don't want justice carried out in Durham
the man is a troll he/she is only out here to race bait so please pay him/her no mind.
You think these trumped up chages against Nifong are going to get these 3 criminals off the hook? Who are you kidding?
A troll is someone who posts stupid statements just to get a rise out of someone. Needs a real hobby.
Experienced participants in online forums know that the most effective way to discourage a troll is usually to ignore him or her, because responding encourages a true troll to continue disruptive posts — hence the often-seen warning "Please do not feed the troll", for which PDNFTT is a common initialism.
[Finnerty was punished for the fight.]
He was sentenced to 30 days but the jail time was suspended and he was given probation.
Was that punishment?
Thank you gs - that is great - love it. I will no longer feed the troll.
theman...can you find me SOLID evidence (ie, scientific, witnesses, electronic) that shows the boys are criminals...please do...
To anonymous 9:57:
Do you know anything about the fight? Are you aware of facts that would have warranted a prison sentence? Otherwise, trust that the sentencing judge was aware of the facts and circumstances of the case and acted accordingly.
Of course I want justice done in Durham. I want Nifong to lose his job, his case, his law license, and his freedom. Then I want theman to be arrested for rape, kidnapping, and sexual assault. If I can find out his name, then I will find someone from the Platinum Club to accuse him. It will be fun.
just read some recent posts...I understand and will not feed the troll (I do have a sneaking suspicion he is really Mike Nifong)
30 days for one punch, first offense. No serious injuries. Seems about right. In fact had he not been charged in the Duke case he would have had a clean record. The deal has he had to stay out of trouble.
DAs don't fill up jails with two guys throwing a punch or two.
Happens all the time. Most people are on good behavior for 6 months or a year.
F. decided to attend a underage drinking party with strippers. Not a good move. Still if Nifong had investigated the rape, instead of just charging people, the fight conviction would never had happen.
I was in a courtroom recently where a teenager did a little malicious mischief in a police station parking lot. The judge was pretty funny about it. He said that if you do it again, you shouldn't do it at a police station as they have police there.
Then they read his record and it was fairly lengthy including posession of drugs and other malicious mischief.
He was fined $1,000 or 25 hours community service.
I was pretty surprised at the light punishment but I guess we have limited funds for jail space.
On another note:
2 NC Docs Could Cinch Nifong's Personal Liability over at Friends of Duke University.
Regarding the other poster, yes I did read the facts of the Finnerty case. Kids in middle school and high school call other kids gay to tease them I guess. I'm
sure we had something
analagous when I was in
The jails are full.
What DA wants to schedule court time, witnesses, police for a couple of punches, let alone find jail space if he's found guilty.
Two guys fighting outside a bar, no one really hurt. DA told F. grow up stay out of trouble or your going to jail.
D.A. in Hot Water Over Duke Rape Scandal from US News and World Report.
"Are there any African-American leaders willing to speak out about the stripper's faulty story? There is only silence from such luminaries as Jesse Jackson and the Rev. Al Sharpton.
Perhaps whites are fearful of being accused of racism if they venture a harsh opinion. Jackson and Sharpton seem ready to pounce immediately if there is any accusation of racial abuse."
First I've seen in one of the major news weeklies with the guts to say this.
"What DA wants to schedule court time, witnesses, police for a couple of punches, let alone find jail space if he's found guilty."
That DA obviously did. Finnerty had a deal. That deal was revoked because of the alleged rape. He went on trial. Obviously DA did want to schedule court time, witnesses, police.
Finnerty attended a team party.
Do we even know if the rest of the boys knew there were going to be strippers?
I have also read Nifong may not be covered for his press conferences and statements. Not part of a DAs job. Made them before anyone was charged, He changed the lineup as lead investigator, and not prosecutor, etc.
The good thing is that many law school professors around the country are think hard on how to hold Nifong responsible. I'm betting the experts are smarter than Nifong.
Texasyank, I agree it is somewhat of a close call. In both this, the TANG documents and the AP stringers and others people caught the press believing what the press wanted to or were predisposed to believe.
They pooled their money for the strippers. $400 x 2 = $800. I did not have that kind of money in college. Either way F. been to other parties, knew underage drinking would happen, I believe (not sure) he knew about the strippers. I can imanage them talking it up ahead of time. Remember they had to call and get an appointment for the strippers.
GS, I have argued elsewhere that if I were a tort attorney [and I am not any kind of attorney] I would argue that while DA Mike Nifong might have some immunity DA candidate Mike Nifong has zero immunity from a law suit.
Thus I would be looking for evidence that Mike Nifong conducted other campaign business from the office or commented on or received phone calls on this case at his campaign HQ.
Certainly he was candidate Mike Nifong not DA Mike Nifong at that candidate forum at NCCU. If he once called or received a call from DNA Security Inc at his campaign office for example, he is open for lawsuits. If he took a call from DNA SI on the same cell phone he used to campaign, again I think he is open to suits.
800$ divided by 35-40 people is 20-25 $ a head. You must have been really poor in college if you did not have "that kind of money."
Some posters have suggested that the DA where the Meehan meetings took place (Nifong, 2 DPD ofificers, and Nifong in the room)start an investigation. The "crime" could be said to have occured in that county.
He may be safe from NC laws, but could be vulunable to a Fed civil rights charge.
Its hard to seperate candidate, prosecutor, lead investigator. Nifong will try to say he was always acting as prosecutor, hence immunity.
As I said the Law professors are trying hard to figure out how to get at Nifong. Most are talking about lawsuits not criminal charges.
And the number one rule of sueing someone? Go for the deep pockets. Durham, NC, Duke University.
We spent the money on beer.
"30 days for one punch, first offense. No serious injuries. Seems about right. In fact had he not been charged in the Duke case he would have had a clean record. The deal has he had to stay out of trouble."
From what I've read, it wasn't even a real punch (no contact made).
Yes, there was no physical punching, only shadow punching.
He got convicted because he shadow punched the guy.
GS that is another of my views of this. When people were saying there was nothing that could be done to derail this, I pointed out that the 15 Dec hearing gave DA Johnson of Alamance Co plenty of evidence to convene a grand jury and indict Nifong. Nifong stupidly went into another juris diction to conspire and in fact obstruct justice.
But now the NC bar and NC DAs association have stepped up. Still if Nifong won't give up, then maybe DA Johnson should indict him.
GS the go for the deep pocket is when you are in the law suit business to collect money. I think that is only part of the reason that the defendants in this case will sue.
I think they will want judgements against some shallow pockets to help further clear their names in the mind of the public.
anon 10:02 I would be happy to go and file rape charges on the man. I already know how the process goes.
gs 10:47 I had to do some checking. Nifong is not covered by any N.C. law. For any press conference he made during March - June of this year. So all of the Lacrosse Team can and should file claims against him.
Bill: You're right. I have rarely seen editorials this crushing and in one vein from newspapers all across the country. If the Baltimore Sun could do the same for my state's wrongfully accused resident, it would be a complete victory.
GS said: "30 days for one punch, first offense. No serious injuries. Seems about right. In fact had he not been charged in the Duke case he would have had a clean record. The deal has he had to stay out of trouble."
SteveDinMD: Actually, Collin Finnerty never threw a punch in the DC incident. He and another man were engaged in a shouting match outside a bar when one of the other fellow's friends attacked and struck Collin from behind. According to local news accounts, even the alleged victim admitted as much in court. In a surprise twist, the alleged victim's parents publicly sided with Finnerty and urged their son -- who, according to some accounts, had a history of engaging in drunken brawls -- to drop the charges. All this notwithstanding, the judge convicted Mr. Finnerty in a bench trial, a verdict that was criticized by a number of criminal attorneys who followed the case.
"'What DA wants to schedule court time, witnesses, police for a couple of punches, let alone find jail space if he's found guilty.'
That DA obviously did. Finnerty had a deal. That deal was revoked because of the alleged rape. He went on trial. Obviously DA did want to schedule court time, witnesses, police."
SteveDinMD: Ultimately, at least five assistant U.S. Attorneys were devoted to the case. When you add in court time for pleadings, the trial, press liasions, and administrative costs for Collin's sureties, etc., this was easily the most expensive Simple Assault prosecution in the history of the World. It was ridiculous. The only reason it got to that point was because the U.S. Attorney for DC wanted to prosecute the assault case as a means to assist the rape prosecution in Durham.
I wonder if that DA in DC was in touch with Nifong during that sorry affair. No doubt, Nifong was trying to make sure that any testimony Collin gave in court could be impeached.
I hope that the prosecutors in this country realize now that they are on notice. The blogosphere cannot get all of them for every bad act, but mark my words, there are other prosecutors whom the blogs will take down. Nifong is going to be a poster boy for the blogs, and I am sure there will be others.
need a little help here
am i to understand that a vicious thug who tried to railroad cdr may not have to face criminal prosecution?
help me understand this
if this is true, then the law really is a whore
JLS says...11:40 pm
I agree the law suits judgements will further clear their names. But I would sue Nifong, and the AV just to make sure that they make no profit off their deeds by selling the story.
Also, I was probably wrong when I said that F. actual hit the man outside the bar. Bar fights are who do youu believe, avoid them. But again had Nifong investigate the charge instead of indicting, F. would most likely have a clean record today.
11:58 whether he hit him or not does not matter. He and his lawyers agree to the plea bargain (stay out of trouble). Stay out of trouble and he would be clean. In these type of issues it could go anyway. Be paranoid. P.s. Who cares what his parents say they were not at the bar?
That DA did not want to schedule time. He was forced to schedule time when Nifong indicted F and he broke (not his direct fault) the agreement. But again DA s want to avoid these issues for 1st time offenders. Thats why the gave F. a chance. Life is not fair.
So your defense of sahdow boxing is to let any stranger on the street, calling you names to prentend throwing punches at you. Do you wait for 1 to hit or pray that he not a drunk fool and breaks your jaw?
Maybe you should get real. Finnerty had a deal for his shadow boxing. Why did they put him on trial? He got in trouble? What did he get in trouble for? We know he went to a party, but there is no evidence that he personally was drinking. He got accused of rape, but how was he supposed to know that when he went to the party?
What's John Edwards saying as this is his home state and his campaign just launched? Surely he's been asked about the case.
The answer to that is easy. Mr Edwards made his millions as a palintiff's trial attorney specializing in using junk science and later disproven theories to ruin the lives of otherwise honorable defendants. He has never owned up to this, and to open his yap now would mean he'd have some 'splaining to do.
What if the FEDs arrest Nifong on Feb 2. There will be no swearing in and the judge doesn't have to remove him from the case. After all he did commit criminal acts and he is a state government official. He broke Constitutional law and committed fraud, destroyed evidence and hid evidence. I'm hoping for a SWAT team in Durham Feb 2 to clean out the DA's office and the DPD.
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