Monday, June 29, 2009

The Iqbal Briefs: The Unindicted Players

Friday’s Wall Street Journal profiled the recent Supreme Court decision Ashcroft v. Iqbal, which is now at the heart of the lacrosse case. At the request of Duke’s attorneys, Judge Beaty allowed all parties to the case to file briefs regarding Iqbal; offerings from Duke, various Durham entities, and DNA Security have arrived. Attorneys for the lacrosse players will now have 20 days to respond.

Even though the 5-4 decision dealt with national security affairs, two of its findings had much broader relevance. First, the Court held that former Attorney General John Ashcroft and FBI director Robert Mueller could not be held liable—in a “supervisory” capacity—for the allegedly discriminatory activities of their subordinates. Second, the Court made it easier for judges to dismiss civil suits before the discovery process begins, since, according to Justice Kennedy, “While legal conclusions can provide the framework of a complaint, they must be supported by factual allegations.” As Justice Souter implied in his dissent, Kennedy’s wording overruled the standard by which judges in civil cases were required to treat all allegations as true in evaluating motions to dismiss.

The Journal quoted SCOTUSblog’s Tom Goldstein predicting that the case—which he described as “an unexpected gift for the business community”—would be “cited more than any other [from the current term] by a factor of 100.”

By making it harder for plaintiffs to survive a motion to dismiss, Iqbal was a victory for any business (like Duke) or any municipality (like Durham) subjected to a civil suit. It is more than ironic that a decision supported by the four reliable conservatives on the Court could benefit a Duke administration that cowered before politically correct campus ideologues and a Durham Police Department whose conduct veered into race-based demagoguery. Somehow, I doubt that in any other circumstance would Richard Brodhead or the Group of 88 celebrate the work of Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, or John Roberts.

Before beginning, three general points:

(1) Because of its findings regarding supervisory employees, Iqbal would most seem to benefit the upper-level figures in the DPD, about whose conduct we still know relatively little, and former SANE nurse-in-training Tara Levicy’s supervisors at Duke Hospital. In a perverse fashion, Iqbal appears to encourage a “see-no-evil/hear-no-evil” approach to supervising rogue employees.

(2) The Ekstrand lawsuit made many more inferential claims—especially regarding a “consortium” of Duke and Durham employees—than did either the lawsuit filed by the three falsely accused players or the offering of the other unindicted players. While the conclusions in the Ekstrand lawsuit may well be true, its aggressiveness makes it more vulnerable to the Iqbal standard, a point that is hammered home in briefs filed by Durham and Duke. One unanswered question is whether Judge Beaty will allow the attacks on the Ekstrand lawsuit to affect his consideration of the more limited claims offered by the falsely accused players and the other unindicted players.

(3) Iqbal hurts civil suit plaintiffs because documents and testimony necessary to sustain “factual allegations” often are not available until the discovery process is completed. In the lacrosse case, on the other hand, a lot of facts have become public—whether through Mike Nifong’s ethics trial; or his criminal contempt trial; or through the work of 60 Minutes, ABC’s Law & Justice Unit, and local media such as the N&O; or through the efforts of case blogs; or even through selected publications. In that respect, the lacrosse plaintiffs are much better equipped than the average plaintiffs to overcome the hurdles that Iqbal has imposed, since they have myriad facts upon which to base their allegations.


Today’s post will analyze the defendants’ responses to the suits filed by the unindicted players; Thursday’s post will look at the responses in the suit filed by the three falsely accused players.

1.) “We Didn’t Know What Was Going On”

In light of Iqbal’s findings regarding supervisory liability, Durham attorney Patricia Kerner proclaims, almost gleefully, “There are no factual, individual allegations describing conduct that would allow a court to infer that any individual’s actions constitute ‘deliberate indifference’ or why any individual would have had knowledge of a subordinate officer’s conduct.”

In other words: in the highest-profile criminal case in the history of the Durham Police Department—one that attracted blanket local and national attention—Durham’s current position is that it’s not plausible to believe that the chain of command in the Durham Police Department “would have had knowledge of a subordinate officer’s conduct.”

Durham, perhaps, should amend its city slogan to “Come to Durham: Our Police Leadership Is Clueless!”

The DNA Security brief offers a similar line of argument. It concedes that company president Richard Clark attended the meeting at which Nifong and former lab director Dr. Brian Meehan agreed to produce an incomplete report that would exclude the exculpatory DNA evidence that would ultimately bring down the case. But, Clark suggests, he’s not legally liable. Why not? “In the absence of any specific allegation of wrongdoing (or, indeed, even of knowledge) on Clark’s part, Plaintiffs appear to premise their claims against him on his title alone.”

Is DNA Security really suggesting that it’s not plausible that Clark had “knowledge” of what occurred at the Nifong-Meehan meetings, meetings at which he was present? Is the company’s line of defense actually going to be that its president ordinarily attends meetings but has no idea what occurs in them?

Imagine the new advertising motto: “DNA Security: Our President Is Clueless!”

In their brief, Duke attorneys Jamie Gorelick and Donald Cowan also cite Iqbal to excuse the liability of senior Duke administrators.

In so doing, however, they choose not to deal with a critical difference between the Iqbal facts and those of the lacrosse case: Chairman Robert Steel’s April 11, 2007 e-mail. The Board chairman informed the world that “throughout the past year President Richard Brodhead consulted regularly with the trustees and has had our continuing support. He made considered and thoughtful decisions in a volatile and uncertain situation. Each step of the way, the board agreed with the principles that he established and the actions he took. As we look back and with the benefit of what we now know there is no question that there are some things that might have been done differently. However, anyone critical of President Brodhead should be similarly critical of the entire board.” [emphases added]

Neither Ashcroft nor Mueller, of course, ever issued such a statement regarding the facts in the Iqbal case. For Duke, alas, the “we-didn’t-know-what’s-going-on” defense is undercut by Steel’s e-mail—which he surely now wishes he never had sent.

2.) Defending Unusual(!) Procedures

Gorelick and Cowan also have the thankless task of defending the conduct of former SANE nurse-in-training Tara Levicy. As in the past, they do so in a way that makes a mockery of the “factual allegations” established by the Attorney General’s report.

Here’s how Gorelick and Cowan describe Levicy’s role in the case: “The fact that Ms. Levicy met with police officers and prosecutors does not plausibly demonstrate a conspiracy, as Iqbal requires. Rather, it shows only the unremarkable fact [emphasis added] that the police investigating a possible crime gathered information from a health care provider who examined the alleged victim.”

There are only two possible justifications for the Gorelick/Cowan description of Levicy’s performance as “unremarkable”:

(1) The “information from a health care provider who examined the alleged victim” was accurate. But, of course, we know that Levicy’s information both wasn’t accurate and constantly shifted in manners that went along with Nifong’s ever-shifting rationalizations of the case.

(2) It was “unremarkable” for a Duke employee to give such false information—in her capacity as “a health care provider”—to “police investigating a possible crime.”

Could Duke really be claiming that either (1) or (2) are plausible explanations for former SANE nurse-in-training Levicy’s conduct?

Gorelick and Cowan have the same problem regarding the performance of the Duke Police Department. “Plaintiffs’ assertions about meetings and communications between the Duke and Durham police,” they note, “show only that the two forces were occasionally, and entirely properly, [emphasis added] exchanging information about the case.”

Yet among the “information” exchanged was the key-card records of Duke students—“information” that is protected under FERPA. Could Duke be plausibly claiming that the unauthorized release of FERPA-protected information—information that a Durham judge, citing FERPA, later denied to Mike Nifong—constituted the “entirely proper[] exchang[e of] information”?

Durham attorney Kerner likewise meanders into the unusual. “Plaintiffs allege no facts,” she writes, “showing that [former City Manager Patrick] Baker, or anyone else, suggested at the [March 29, 2006] meeting that someone should be arrested for the rape, unless the investigation led to a proper identification [emphasis added] and probable cause for the arrest.”

But, of course, no “proper identification” ever occurred in this case: Nifong and the DPD plowed ahead with a lineup that flagrantly violated their own procedures. So what, exactly, is Kerner’s rationalization for the DPD having proceeded with the investigation?

And here’s how the attorney for DNA Security describes the meetings between Mike Nifong and former DNA Security lab director Brian Meehan: “A prosecutor’s consultation and coordination with his retained expert is not suggestive of conspiracy but simply describes the ordinary and expected interaction [emphasis added] between key participants in a criminal investigation.”

The meetings between Nifong and Meehan resulted in the incomplete report that violated both North Carolina’s NTO law and the constitutional requirements of Brady. Is DNA Security really describing this tête-à-tête as an “ordinary and expected interaction”?

Kerner, meanwhile, describes the public statements of David Addison in the following manner: “The only plausible conclusion [emphasis added] is that Addison was attempting to urge witnesses to come forward, in connection with discharging his duties for Durham Crimestoppers.”

Is it really Durham’s official position that performing his official duties is the only plausible explanation for a police officer uttering false, inflammatory statements? Perhaps that explains why Addison was subsequently promoted? Could it be that the DPD actually expects its officers to utter false, inflammatory statements, at least when the targets are those without strong support in the Durham “community”?

3.) Extraordinary Assertions

The Kerner brief contains two items so outrageous that they stand out even in the pantheon of bizarre assertions by Durham authorities throughout the case.

Kerner concedes that one week before the captains’ party, Sgt. Mark Gottlieb was transferred away from a position in which he would have regular contact with Duke students. And she doesn’t deny that the transfer was related to Gottlieb’s troubling record regarding Duke students.

Yet, she adds, this undenied fact of the transfer “has no plausible relation to Plaintiffs’ claims.”

Why not? Kerner never says.

Of course.

Similarly, Kerner contends that Addison’s false and inflammatory statements didn’t cause any harm to the lacrosse players.

Why not? “Although Plaintiffs have no doubt catalogued every article, blog, photograph, or comment about the investigation, they do not allege that they were ever individually mentioned at any time by Addison.”

So: Addison should be shielded from the legal effects of his misconduct because he referred to the group as a group, never mentioning that perhaps his comments didn’t apply to all of the group?

4.) New Item

Finally, the briefs contained one new, and potentially explosive, item.

In attempting to defend DPD Capt. Jeff Lamb, Kerner concedes (in perhaps the strongest manner yet from any representative of the City of Durham) that on March 24, 2006, Lamb did, in fact, inform Sgt. Mark Gottlieb that Nifong would be directing the police investigation. We still don’t know why Lamb made that decision—and Kerner doesn’t say. But her brief suggests that prevention from future civil liability might have accounted for Lamb’s very strange action. As Kerner explains, "The [Ekstrand] Complaint contains no factual allegations even implying that Lamb knew, or would have any reason to know, that his agreement to have Nifong direct the investigation could create a risk of constitutional injury . . . Nifong was the District Attorney appointed to serve by the Governor, and police officers are immune from liability for taking direction from a prosecutor [emphasis added].

In other words: in violation of DPD rules, Lamb transferred the case to Nifong’s jurisdiction, and because he and his underlings were thereafter “taking direction” from the rogue “prosecutor,” they should be deemed immune from liability. I suspect this is a line of inquiry the Durham attorneys will wish they hadn’t opened for exploration, since it certainly sounds like the DPD knew it was doing something very wrong, and was desperately scrambling for a bureaucratic solution that would absolve it of future civil liability.


Anonymous said...

That was a sharp point about how Duke and Durham are celebrating the legal opinions of the conservative justices. The irony is that, in some locations, the practitioners of PC demagoguery have become "the man." MOO! Gregory

gwallan said...

We Didn’t Know What Was Going On

The buck stops...where?

Note to self - "Watch p's and q's. Expect to be scapegoated soon. From above."

It was “unremarkable” for a Duke employee to give such false information—in her capacity as “a health care provider”—to “police investigating a possible crime.”

1. Every SANE outcome previously provided by Duke should now be considered dubious.

2. While Levicy was being discussed here I posited that anybody with a demonstrable feminist background should not be allowed anywhere near a SANE position. This now becomes imperative. Levicy is not the first feminist to lie to authorities in a health related professional role because of their ideology.

Addison should be shielded from the legal effects of his misconduct because he referred to the group as a group, never mentioning that perhaps his comments didn’t apply to all of the group?

Remember the identity politics at the heart of this. This is precisely the way their game is played.

All men are rapists! {oops} Present company excepted of course.

I suspect this is a line of inquiry the Durham attorneys will wish they hadn’t opened for exploration, since it certainly sounds like the DPD knew it was doing something very wrong, and was desperately scrambling for a bureaucratic solution that would absolve it of future civil liability.

Petard. Meet hoist.

Anonymous said...

The DPD is sounding more and more like the child who murders his parents and then asks for the court's mercy because he's an orphan.

William L. Anderson said...

This decision has another ironic twist: the SCOTUS now has declared that civil standards in federal lawsuits are tougher than CRIMINAL standards. For example, the simple meeting of two people is enough to trigger a "conspiracy" conviction in federal criminal cases.

Yet, in Iqbal the "conspiracy" standard is set higher. This is the ultimate perversity in the federal system, and I never thought I would see it happen.

Already, many federal crimes reflect the "crimes of analogy" that were fundamental in the legal system of the former U.S.S.R. Yes, that is right; federal prosecutors literally are using the framework of Soviet "law" to charge and convict people. This is NOT a "they are all commies" statement; I am speaking of actual cases, statements, and the like.

So, the legal system of the USA has come full circle. We now have become what we supposedly hated.

Anonymous said...

Iqbal simply confirms my belief that by not allowing early discovery, Judge Beaty put the Plaintiffs at a disadvantage, one that may result in their claims not getting a fair hearing. (JMOO)

Anonymous said...

Well, since it is well known that 2 of the Duke cops were told to change their written report about some events that night, I would guess, that some people at Duke knew that happened and some people in Durham knew that happened and some people at both PD knew that. And Brodhead said it was not the Duke PD's responsibility? Then why tell some to change their reports?

sceptical said...

Excellent analysis of some complicated arguments.

Debrah said...

What a maze of mendacity.

There has always been such an incestuous relationship between the Durham City Council, the Durham manager, the DPD, and anyone "prominent" who has the slightest input as to how things are run.

It's a total fabrication that all parties to this Hoax from Durham were not---and have been, subsequently---coordinating their stories and their efforts to get out of their liability.

Bureaucratically, culturally, and politically, a place like Durham was never quite prepared for the prospect of being held to standards to which others abide.

They thought that, surely, with the cast of characters involved and the "victim" and "perpetrators" so strategically positioned on the race/class/gender see-saw...... one would dare question them on how they conducted this case.

Double standards is how Durham exists.

How could it not work this time?

And you have to love this grand irony which KC has highlighted:

"Somehow, I doubt that in any other circumstance would Richard Brodhead or the Group of 88 celebrate the work of Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, or John Roberts."

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the analysis of the decision of SCOTUS. It will be interesting to see how the lawyers for the players respond. I sincerely hope that the jude is able to sort the wheat from the chaff and rule that discovery must proceed.

Anonymous said...

I second sceptical's comment. Great analysis!

Debrah said...

Durham City Council and Mayor Bell

Current Durham City Manager, who was not in position during the Lacrosse Hoax.

One of the biggest culprits of the Hoax, Patrick Baker, the former Durham City Manager, is now the Durham City Attorney!

And of course, Mike Nifong's protégé Tracey Cline picks up where he left off.

All of these players knew what the other was doing or saying....or what the other was about to do or the Hoax was being concocted and sustained.

You cannot invent such bureaucratic incest in a day.

Such methods of operation have to be cultivated and repeated over and over for decades.

Debrah said...

As a sidebar, the Supreme Court has ruled in favor of the New Haven firefighters.

Finally some sanity.

Anonymous said...

It bothers me not that plaintiffs in general should be suing with specific facts rather than suspicions or conspiracy theories. It also bothers me little that titular leaders far removed from subordinate evil-doers are not expected to pay dearly for wrongdoing that was not intended by them. Nailing them for actions subsequently that DID create harm is a different matter.

In all, this weeds out a lot of the iffy complaints, and forces the attorneys to focus on real and substantial harm. In some ways, it relieves them from pursuing goofy avenues that were available before, but which they were ethically bound to pursue. All in all, it's a reasonable reform. Should unintended consequences later arise, it can be modified.

No justice, no peace said...

"There is nothing wrong with your television set. Do not attempt to adjust the picture. We are controlling transmission. If we wish to make it louder, we will bring up the volume. If we wish to make it softer, we will tune it to a whisper. We can reduce the focus to a soft blur, or sharpen it to crystal clarity. We will control the horizontal. We will control the vertical. For the next hour, sit quietly and we will control all that you see and hear. You are about to experience the awe and mystery which reaches from the inner mind to... The Outer Limits."

the following FERPA exception relative to the Duke CCI.

"...Legitimate education interests..."

"...or a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks..."

Rights of Students Under FERPA

"..FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent. One exception that permits disclosure without consent is disclosure to school officials with legitimate educational interests. A school official is a person employed by the University in an administrative, supervisory, academic or research, or support staff position (including law enforcement unit personnel and health staff ); a person or company with whom the University has contracted (such as an attorney, auditor or collection agent); a person serving on the Board of Visitors; or a student serving on an official committee, such as a disciplinary or grievance committee, or assisting another school official in performing his or her tasks. A school official has a legitimate educational interest if the official needs to review an education record in order to fulfill his or her professional responsibility..."

a Nice NJ Guy said...

Steel and Brodhead commented many times as the case unfolded. Certainly they cannot assert being ignorant of the case.

Duke Medical's senior management might have a higher degree of shielding from personal responsibility. However, Duke Medical itself certainly is in hot water.

IANAL. However, Iqbal appears more on the order of making Mr. Obama immune to lawsuits relating to clearing the snow off the steps of the post office.

Jamie said...

As you note, the SC has made it easier for judges to dismiss civil suits before discovery begins, since legal conclusions must now be supported by “factual allegations”, and documents and testimony necessary to sustain factual allegations often come out of discovery.

But because of all of the stuff that’s already come to light, do the plaintiffs in this case really have an advantage? If you’re the defense, why not claim that DNA Security’s Clark was unaware of what really occurred at the Nifong-Meehan meetings he attended? Here’s how one might put it: Clark is no idiot, just an incredibly honest guy. Sadly, Nifong and Meehan are not. Given Clark’s superhuman probity, the latter two knew better than ever to discuss in front of him lies or omissions of any kind. Clark had no clue of the skullduggery, because conspirators Nifong and Meehan concealed their scheme so well. They never asked the company president to conspire with them, or got him to sign off on a document agreeing to do so, so where’s the factual allegation?

Okay, but are senior Duke administrators screwed? According to Steel’s email Brodhead consulted regularly with the trustees and has had their continuing support. Well, of course the board agreed with the principles that Brodhead established and believed that those principles guided the actions he took. Brodhead told them he wanted to right this terrible wrong, that he wanted Duke to do the right thing. He probably wept. The trustees, fair and honest innocents, were all enraptured. What specific actions did the trustees support– the ones Brodhead described to them as concrete attempts to make Duke a safer, better place? The ones Brodhead represented as efforts to protect the weak? Of course Brodhead never spoke openly and explicitly to trustees about his cowardly scheme to sacrifice the players to the PC wolves.

Well then, did Levicy ever acknowledge her malevolent, blinding bias to anyone, ask higher-ups to join her conspiracy, and get their agreement to do so?

Even in fair Durham, what city officials are imbecilic enough to go on the record explicitly ordering arrests for the “rape” based on improper identification? Yes, the identification was improper, but it wasn’t supposed to be so. Not their fault.

And finally, Addison indeed uttered false, inflammatory statements, but hey, as a black man he thought they were true, and anyway he was one very upset crimestopper. Did anyone in the DPD ever write or say anything commending Addison for his false, inflammatory statements, or tying his subsequent promotion to them? Maybe Addison was rewarded for his earnest zeal by a far-seeing department that forgives mistakes, and rewards cops who really care.

sceptical said...


Your suggestion that Capt. Lamb may have turned over the case to Nifong to take advantage of his prosecutorial immunity is intriguing.

The problem I have with this theory is that the conversation between Lamb and Nifong was March 24, yet the rape kit specimens were not turned over to the SBI for DNA analysis until March 27. Therefore, when Lamb and Nifong talked, it was still possible that DNA evidence might have proved a sexual assault.

At the time there was the legal equivalent of the "fog of war" and many thought that a rape was possible. This may seem ridiculous in hindsight, but Lamb and Nifong may very have thought that the DNA would show a match between Mangum and one or more of the lacrosse players. (With Crystal crawling on the floor during her "dance," it was lucky she did not pick up trace DNA from the attendees).

My point is: why would Lamb want the Durham PD to put itself under Nifong's immunity cloak at a time when the charges were still viable i.e. before the DNA results?

Gary Packwood said...

Thanks for a very helpful explanation of what is most certainly a complex issue.

Unfortunately I haven't changed my mind much since late 2006.

The G88 and their friends at Duke and in the community along with Nifong's blessing and Student Affairs organizational talents were functioning as a Racketeering Influenced Corrupt Organization (RICO).

The G88 et al created a 'racket' to secure their own employment as tenured faculty with courses in diversity to be taught only by them and their friends...thus creating a political left learning community in and about Durham, NC...paid for by Duke University.

And the Homeowners Association along with Crime Stoppers were the first 'O' in RICO back in March of 2006, IMO.

kcjohnson9 said...

To sceptical:

I suspect that Lamb turned the case over for Nifong for political reasons, and I doubt he did it of his own accord: I'd be amazed if the order didn't come from either Chalmers or Patrick Baker.

But, until the Kerner brief, we had never received even a possible explanation on the record from a representative of Durham as to why the DPD acted as it did. We now have such a possible (very after-the-fact) explanation. Unfortunately, it's not a well thought-out excuse. But I see no reason why, on this point, the players' attorneys shouldn't accept Durham at its word, since doing so provides some circumstantial evidence of an intent to conceal.

The Lamb-Nifong notice essentially puts Durham in an impossible position. There is no innocent explanation for the move. Durham has never even tried, before last week's filings, to come up with a public rationalization for the decision. Kerner would have better served her client by simply staying away from the matter. That she didn't was a mistake.

No justice, no peace said...

"Where to begin? How about with the fact that Romulus of Rome never existed..."

A great article by Christina Hoff Sommers, "Persistent Myths in Feminist Scholarship"

Another "Big Lie"...

"...informs readers that "between 20 and 35 percent of women seeking medical care in emergency rooms in America are there because of domestic violence." Studies by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Bureau of Justice Statistics, an agency of the U.S. Department of Justice, indicate that the figure is closer to 1 percent..."

This is good:

"Why should it matter if a large number of professors think and say a lot of foolish and intemperate things? Here are three reasons to be concerned:

1) False assertions, hyperbole, and crying wolf undermine the credibility and effectiveness of feminism. The United States, and the world, would greatly benefit from an intellectually responsible, reality-based women's movement.

2) Over the years, the feminist fictions have made their way into public policy. They travel from the women's-studies textbooks to women's advocacy groups and then into news stories. Soon after, they are cited by concerned political leaders. President Obama recently issued an executive order establishing a White House Council on Women and Girls. As he explained, "The purpose of this council is to ensure that American women and girls are treated fairly in all matters of public policy." He and Congress are also poised to use the celebrated Title IX gender-equity law to counter discrimination not only in college athletics but also in college math and science programs, where, it is alleged, women face a "chilly climate." The president and members of Congress can cite decades of women's-studies scholarship that presents women as the have-nots of our society. Never mind that this is largely no longer true. Nearly every fact that could be marshaled to justify the formation of the White House Council on Women and Girls or the new focus of Title IX application was shaped by scholarly merchants of hype like Professors Lemon and Seager.

3) Finally, as a philosophy professor of almost 20 years, and as someone who respects rationality, objective scholarship, and intellectual integrity, I find it altogether unacceptable for distinguished university professors and prestigious publishers to disseminate falsehoods. It is offensive in itself, even without considering the harmful consequences. Obduracy in the face of reasonable criticism may be inevitable in some realms, such as partisan politics, but in academe it is an abuse of the privileges of professorship."

One Spook said...

In the previous comment thread, I wrote, "any reference to the recent allegations against Mr. Lombard, a Duke employee who does not appear to be connected in any manner to the lacrosse case, seems entirely off topic and completely irrelevant to our discussions here."

I hereby retract my "off topic and completely irrelevant to our discussions here." statement.

I was wrong and I apologize.

It is certainly relevant to the extent of comparing the media coverage of the Lombard case to the Duke lacrosse hoax and to the lack of response by Duke, apart from Duke having dismissed the presumed innocent employee as soon as the details of his arrest became known to Duke.

But, unsurprisingly there was no comment by Brodhead regarding Duke's employee as to "whatever [he] did was bad enough."

And to date there has been no faculty group at Duke rushing to judgment about the guilt of their colleague, or calling for a examination of the culture, lifestyle, race, class, or gender of the accused.

Of course, the accused is an openly gay male, living with a male partner who was apparently unaware of the alleged activity and is NOT charged with any wrongdoing in the case. And, the accused adopted two black children, one of whom he stands accused of offering for sex acts to an undercover police officer.

In the N & O, the Lombard report is stuck back in the "Crime and Safety" section, rather than given prominent front page coverage. It has an astonishing 140 + comments, some of which are excellent, some awful. The report can be found here:

The Liestoppers board has reported on the Lombard case extensively, doing what it does best --- digging up information on anyone and everyone connected with the Lombard case. Some of that information is most interesting and can be found, starting here:

To date there has been no comment from the NC NAACP, Reverend Barber, or the staunch defender of all that is "righteous" in North Carolina, Tim Tyson.



One Spook

Chris Halkides said...

Does anyone know whether Iqbal was detained using the special administrative measures (SAMs) that were mentioned at DIW last fall? I understand that he was a person "of high interest," but I have yet to find any mention of SAMs.


kcjohnson9 said...

A note:

I was asked whether I planned to post on the Lombard case, referenced above in this thread and also in the previous thread.

The answer is no, and unless other details come out about the case, no additional comments on it will be cleared.

The Jermaine Burch rape case was on-point relevant to the lacrosse case: we had a case of a raucous (if hardly atypical) college party, with some questionable (if hardly atypical) behavior at the party, culminating in an allegation of rape. The only significant difference between this and the lacrosse party came in the reversal of the races between the accuser and the accused. The completely different response of the Duke administration and the Group of 88 to the two cases, therefore, provided a perfect illustration of their hypocrisy.

The Lombard case involves allegations not of sexual assault by college students at a party but of grotesque child abuse. As far as I know, Lombard never made any statements on the lacrosse case, and there is no evidence to date that anyone in the Duke administration had any knowledge of Lombard's behavior.

Should any of the above conditions change, I will, of course, revisit the decision to stop clearing comments on the case.

Anonymous said...

Found at Minding The Campus.

From The Chronicle of Higher Education.

Persistent Myths in Feminist Scholarship


Ms Sommers seems to have discovered a "feminist" law professor, and textbook writer, one Nancy K.D. Lemon, Berkeley law professor, who is, it would seem, the full equal of Karla Holloway.

Ms Lemon explicates that "The history of women's abuse began over 2,700 years ago in the year 753 BC. It was during the reign of Romulus of Rome that wife abuse was accepted and condoned under the Laws of Chastisement". Would that be the same Romulus, descended from Mars and nursed by a she-wolf who is generally considered to have not ACTUALLY existed?

Various other myths and grotesqueries also in this most entertaining article.

Anonymous said...

Even the horrible people at Duke and Durham were afraid of he law. Wanting a conviction, as a confirmation of their own twisted thinking, DNA testing was done not once but twice without their required result. Personally, I truly thought that the result of the tests wold be tampered to their purposes. Without the desired result the test's exonerating evidece had to be hidden in plain view, that is in a huge compilation of pages and pages of technical jagon. The facts are that the whole of this Duke group would have gloried in a conviction no matter how it came to them. They created a terrible environment for justice to prevail as it did in spite of themselves. Even these Duke faculty zealots had to retreat before the facts if not the law, and yet they continue to discuss without apology their supposed correctnes. I don't think so.

No justice, no peace said...

Is "X" a communist?

...making Cuban women the most suicidal in the world

One wonders why the oppressed studies experts at Duke don't study the consequence of tyranny within Cuba.

"...So what's the alternative if you can't flee Cuba? Well, in 1986 Cuba's suicide rate reached 24 per thousand - making it double Latin America's average, making it triple Cuba's rate during the unspeakable Batista era, making Cuban women the most suicidal in the world, and making death by suicide the primary cause of death for Cubans aged 15-48..."

Ignoring injustice or tyranny suggests the Klan of 88 may be kindred spirits.

This linked article, "Anniversary of a Castroite Massacre" is a sad, yet compelling read about the type of people we are dealing with...those who stifle freedom.

Anonymous said...

I truly believe that we have reached the point where technology has become one with our society, and I am fairly confident when I say that we have passed the point of no return in our relationship with technology.

I don't mean this in a bad way, of course! Ethical concerns aside... I just hope that as memory gets less expensive, the possibility of uploading our brains onto a digital medium becomes a true reality. It's a fantasy that I daydream about all the time.

(Posted on Nintendo DS running [url=]R4 Card[/url] DS NetBrowze)