The N&O is reporting that U.S. Department of Justice has rejected Attorney General Roy Cooper's request for a joint state-federal inquiry into allegations of civil rights violations by Mike Nifong and the DPD.
In an unusual rationalization, given that the state had requested federal intervention, Justice Department spokesperson Peter Carr said, “Well-established principles of federalism and comity discourage federal intervention when the state has the primary interest and the state is taking remedial action.”
We are agnostic as to where a story may lead; we do not go into a story with an agenda or a pre-conceived notion. We do not manipulate or hide facts to advance an agenda.
That approach is admirable. It’s also difficult to reconcile with the paper’s coverage of the lacrosse case, especially its August 25, 2006 article—which clearly manipulated and misstated relevant facts, while offering a thesis that the Attorney General’s April 2007 pronouncement would show was untrue.
Early in the case, a couple of pro-Mangum trolls at the TalkLeft boards spent weeks maintaining that the April 4, 2006 lineup respected Durham procedures (five fillers per suspect) because two or three of the lacrosse players didn’t attend the party, and thus could be considered fillers. This assertion, of course, was absurd, for reasons that, most recently, the Robert Mosteller article explains.
The latest manifestation of this pattern has come in a Liestoppers discussion thread in which Michael Gaynor continues his quixotic defense of Dr. Brian Meehan. Gaynor most recently suggested that
The argument recalls a joke once told by President Kennedy, after he had decided to appoint his brother as attorney general. Knowing that the selection would be controversial, the President quipped that he might open his front door in
Next Monday’s post will be a Q&A on the book. If you have questions about Until Proven Innocent, please ask them in the thread below; I will pick out the more intriguing ones for a response. General or specific questions are welcome.
With the November election, the first serious law review articles about the case, and the last gasps of Group of 88 defenders having come and gone, the DOJ decision leaves only the city of Durham's response as among the loose ends that necessitated the blog's epilogue. That response has been delayed yet again, and is now not due until January 15. Accordingly, the blog will go on full hiatus after Monday's post; if and when Durham produces a response, I'll comment on it in a conclusion to the blog.