Opens with discussion of his education and career in the Durham DA’s office, and his tradition of open-file discovery. Dealt with SBI in his time as an
His open-file approach was more efficient—defendant would have “knowing basis” of how to proceed; “the right thing to do”
“No reason not to” turn over everything.
This policy allowed him not to worry about what was important to a defendant and what was not.
“I ended up getting rid of one person” almost immediately (Freda Black); first six or seven months as DA were devoted to getting the office fully staffed.
Had never heard of an NTO that dealt with more than one person; “struck me that this was going to be a case that was going to get a lot of media attention in
“saw it as a case that would get a lot of attention”—called up Capt. Lamb and told him that all matters should go through him.
Calls Mangum “the victim”—three times; his lawyer does so twice.
When he took over, “no one had been identified as a suspect at that time” [except, of course, for the 46 lacrosse players listed in the non-testimonial order as suspects]
Conversations with SBI people lead to suggestion for Y-STR tests
Names the lacrosse players, however, even as Mangum was the “victim”
SBI reports never contained summaries of the conversations between him and SBI technicians.
When negative results came from SBI, “It was evident to me that this had been a non-ejaculatory events”—therefore, it became an eyewitness ID case. [Of course, his “victim” had said that it was an “ejaculatory event.”]
“primary interest” in going to DSI was “ferreting out” fingernail mixture; but felt that he had no choice but to give DSI everything—“didn’t worry too much” about specifics—“I figured they would know.”
Q: what else was he doing at this time as DA?
A: 1) Running the office—had to answer calls, correspondence, conversations with attorneys.
2.) In a “contested primary” for DA; in April 2006, most night after work, he was involved in something involved with the campaign.
3.) some of his time—“entirely too much of it”—taken up with the media; “spent way too much time in talking with the media”
Had never run a campaign before, had never been a DA before, had never dealt with a case of this magnitude before; April 2006 “very possibly the busiest month of my life”—with things he wasn’t accustomed to dealing with
Still only has “specific recollection” of two meetings; but concedes that the third meeting occurred and he was present.
His recollection of April 10 meeting: knew nothing about YSTR testing; part of purpose was to give him a sense of what YSTR testing was.
Meehan says they had tested all the items from the rape kit; no matches to any lacrosse players; confirmed that there was no semen on any of these items; also said that there was male DNA on some of the items that didn’t match any of the Duke lacrosse players.
Meehan showed them some of the test results that he had completed; said that the results were “quite preliminary” Only one clear match—old sperm; the rest seemed inconsequential.
April 10: Meehan basically tells him that they did the same tests SBI did with more specificity, finding the same thing—found no relevant semen or sperm
Were these Meehan findings consistent with the facts of the case?
Nifong was aware that Mangum had told police officers that last sexual contact was with boyfriend 3-5 days.
At one point, recalled asking Meehan asking whether sperm-fraction is necessarily sperm. Meehan says no. understanding was that Meehan would do further testing—didn’t receive everything from SBI: “my primary interest was to get the fingernails tested”
Focus of first meeting was to allow him to determine what YSTR testing was; also talked abt transference.
“would almost be unusual and unexpected” for a person—male could be anyone; couldn’t say—might have come from her son(!!)—we’re talking, again, about DNA withdrawn from Mangum’s rectal, vaginal, oral swabs, and panties. It could have come from her son??
Meehan did express some concern at some point about privacy issueà that leads to discussion of report.
Negative info (no matches to a player) needn’t be contained in Meehan report.
Seligmann and Finnerty were not indicted on the basis of DNA evidence; therefore wasn’t paying much attention to issue of DNA matches.
NTO people “were entitled to have the results of the test”—but complicated with 46 people.
Goal was to send written report, not oral report; didn’t have any reason to turn things over abt Meehan
Nifong attorney: “we’re using written report and final report interchangeably”—Nifong: yes. So Nifong is now saying May 12 report was final??
April 21 meeting: said that they had obtained YSTR fingernail tests. Nifong guessed it would be Evans. “At that meeting, the focus was almost exclusively on the findings on that particular sample.”
[Himan reported that Meehan said then about four unidentified males.]
“pretty clear from conversations that he was still doing testing”