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May 14, 2006

Duke rape case

Where does the evidence point today?

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - A second round of DNA testing in the Duke University lacrosse rape case came back with the same result as the first - no conclusive match to any member of the team, defense attorneys said Friday.

Attorney Joseph Cheshire, who represents a team captain who has not been charged, said the tests showed genetic material from a "single male source" was found on a vaginal swab taken from the accuser, but that material did not match any of the players.

"In other words, it appears this woman had sex with a male," said Cheshire, who spoke at a news conference with other defense attorneys in the case. "It also appears with certainty it wasn't a Duke lacrosse player."

Cheshire said the testing did find some genetic material from several people on a plastic fingernail found in a bathroom trash can of the house where the team held the March 13 party. He said some of that material had the "same characteristics" - a link short of a conclusive match - to some of the players, but not the two who have charged with rape, kidnapping and sexual assault.

DA Nifong has engaged in very questionable acts since the beginning of this case, seemingly more interested in his election campaign than in careful investigation and evaluation of the case. Now that he HAS won his May 2 election, will he be as quick to press a case where he has yet to secure even the most basic of circumstantial evidence and where his procedures, such as a highly questionable photo lineup consisting of only Duke lacrosse pictures, are beyond the legal pale?

The Politics of Rape - rant warning
Duke 'rapists' are like white racists who lynched blacks

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Posted by Darleen at May 14, 2006 07:06 AM


The 1st round of DNA tests proved conclusive for no match to any of the lacrosse boys.

The 2nd round of DNA test showed no conclusive link to the lacrosse boys.

A partial match on a finger nail was contaminated in the trash can by other material in the trash can.

The stripper has serious character flaws judging by her criminal pass:

• Stripper made a false claim of rape by three boys in 1996.
• Stripper made a false claim of kidnapping in 1998
• Stripper charged with larceny, auto theft, and trying to kill a police officer in 2002

The stripper’s account of the night has serious integrity issues:
• First she claimed 20 boys raped her, then she narrowed it down to 3 in a bathroom
o The bathroom is absolutely and completely devoid of any evidence of a rape. Where is her DNA? Urine, blood, vaginal fluid, saliva, or tears?
o Many people’s DNA were found under her nails but none from the innocent lacrosse boys.
o She lied about losing her fake finger nails in a desperate struggle in the small enclosed bathroom, but pictures show that she removed her nails before inadequately performing her routine. No scratches were found on any of the innocent lacrosse boys’ bodies.
o The 2 innocent boys she “eeny meeny miney moed” to be her rapists weren’t even at the party the time she claimed the rape occurred. She claims that she’s 100% sure, but she told her father that she’s not sure.
o She took drugs before coming to the house, something illegal.
• The 2nd stripper stated that she doubted that a rape occurred, but changed her story after given a deal by DA Nifong, then contact a PR firm to “spin this scandal to her advantage.”

The stripper obviously lied, and she’s putting these innocent boys and families through hell. She deserves to be in prison for the rest of her pathetic life. She is worthless as a person and human being. Her one lie destroyed innocent boys. I hope her and Nifong’s aura catches up to them and they get what they deserve. I hope everyone wishing this rape claim to be true, in spite of all the evidence that it never occurred, gets what’s coming to them.

Posted by: Betty Friedan at May 14, 2006 02:42 PM

This whole thing has been a mess from the start. White college boys hiring black strippers, an over-reaching DA, Newsweek plastering the accused pictures on their front covers, the mixed stories coming from victim. I blame the DA for this. Maybe there will a big surprise in the end of all this, some proof that she was raped, but I doubt it. I am all about supporting victims, I would fit like a pitbull to get these guys if I thought it was true, but this case has smelled from the beginning. Pandering in an election year, screwing with the lives of the accused to win an election is grotesque.

Posted by: Mieke at May 14, 2006 03:34 PM


As you know I work on the prosecutorial side and thus am a fierce champion of victims and the short shrift they are sometimes shown.

But I was appalled at the tactics Nifong has shown.

From the beginning I said that the young men involved appeared to be both stupid and full-of-themselves (as only "big men" on college campuses can behave). I have no problem, to this day, that the coach was forced to resign and the games suspended merely due to the underage drinking and hiring of strippers.

But the "rape" charge and the handling of this case by Nifong puts it into another category.

The young men accused, arrested and have had their pics all over the media, even if later found factually innocent are forever tainted by the politics that deem them "guilty" by reason of race. One of the Newsweek articles, indeed, quoted people who want them found "guilty" regardless if they are NOT guilty to "make up" for other perceived injustices.

That is so unbelievable a sentiment I worry about ANY good ever coming of this case.


For all I know that woman was, indeed, raped..by her "boyfriend" if the DNA match is to be believed. I believe prosecuting her for "lies" may prove a lot harder than you think.

If anyone should be brought up on charges, it is Nifong.

Posted by: Darleen at May 14, 2006 03:48 PM

I am right there with you on Nifong. What the hell is he thinking. A third indictment today, based on what?

The coach was forced to quit because there was a history of tolerance and encouragment of bad behavior by his players. He did nothing to rein them in - he was already "on notice" becuase of some previous bad behavior by the team. This wasn't about underage drinking and hiring of strippers, those lax boys were getting into a lot of trouble. He was a great coach but a terrible leader. I shed no tears for his "resignation". There must be consequences.

I say this of course having grown up on the east coast and gone to a powerful lax school. What jocks get away with is appalling.

Posted by: Mieke at May 15, 2006 12:09 PM

Jocks aren't the only ones who get away with stuff. The average girl get away with a lot more than the average noy.

My son was showering the boys' locker room after gym class, and this naked girl came in and showered with him and a couple of other guys. One guy left and the others were in the process of washing off the soap so they could leave. My son got suspended for two weeks and he did nothing. She didn't get suspended but couldn't make her valedictorian speech at commencement.

Could you imagine if it was a boy who went into the girls’ showers naked? He would be arrested from everything from sexual harassment to sexual assault!

How many times have you seen girls hit boys in public and TV? It’s socially acceptable for girls to hit boys, but if a boy hits her in self defense, he’s the one that’s going to get charged with assault.

Some jocks may get away with “things” but so does many other groups or classification of people.

Posted by: Betty Friedan at May 17, 2006 09:38 PM

District Attorney Mike Nifong is a disgrace to his job:

1) A responsible DA would have stated at the beginning that “there is an investigation, and we don’t have enough to make a statement right now. I’m responsible not only to the accuser, but to the accused. Please wait and let our investigators do their jobs”, but Mr. Mike “all-of-these-privileged-white-boys-are-rapists” Nifong at the beginning of the investigation he will prove the entire lacrosse team is guilty for aiding and abetting a gang rape inside a small enclosed bathroom. Nifong stirred up racial woes and put the lives of Duke and Durham at risk for gang threats and the racist groups like NAACP and the New Black Panthers. Nifong encouraged sexists groups to paste these boys pictures with hate slogans all over their school. Daily hate protests by women’s groups claiming these boys are rapists.
2) DA Mike Nifong cares nothing of guilt, innocence, or destroying innocent boys’ lives.
a. The first batch of DNA came back with conclusive for no match to any of the lacrosse boys.
b. The crime scene was completely void of any DNA evidence of any gang rape.
c. The boy’s that Nifong charged has an air-tight alibi and wasn’t at the party at the time the stripper claimed a rape occurred, and he refused to see this evidence before destroying his life.
d. The second batch of DNA came back with no conclusive match to any of the lacrosse boys.
e. DNA couldn’t rule out partial material found on top of a fake finger nail, inside a waste basket full of DNA material from the boys who lived in that house.
f. The third boy indicted went down to the police department for questioning without counsel, helped with the investigation by identifying all the other boys at the party, offered to take a lie detector test, willingly volunteered a DNA sample, and past a lie detector given by a top senior experienced FBI agent. The stripper said is 90% sure if he had his mustache, but he has never had a mustache, which makes it 0% sure. DA Mike Nifong refused to see this evidence and instead decided to destroy another innocent boy’s life.
g. The stripper’s body was completely void of any sign of a sexual assault (except for signs of recent vaginal and anal from her boyfriend). The alleged crime scene was completely devoid of DNA. It is impossible that a crime scene with three drunk men in a small enclosed room with a fighting and clawing woman being orally, virginally, and anally penetrated not leave any DNA evidence of urine, blood, vaginal fluid, sweat, fecal matter, scat smears, saliva, tears, or semen... especially if condoms were used. How would they take off the condoms during all this chaos without spilling, smearing, or touching the content inside or outside of the condom?

3) Investigator Mark Furman reviewed the lie detector test completed by the FBI on the 3rd boy unfairly indicted for a rape that never occurred. Mr. Furman stated that the boy not only passed the lie detector test, he passed with flying colors, but even without the test, this boy’s resume of helping the police with the investigation is impeccable.
4) DA Mike Nifong stated that all of these boys are hiding the truth and covering up for one anther. Nifong claims the boys are “stone walling”, but when the accusation was made, the police questioned the three boys who lived in the house for over six hours, not one asked for a lawyer. When the entire team was told they had to submit DNA samples, they didn’t call their parents or fight the warrant. The boys cooperated completely. These aren’t the actions of guilty boys. Only when their parents witnessed the circus-like atmosphere created by District Attorney Mike Nifong, the boys were advised to remain quiet.
5) DA Mike Nifong gave the second stripper a deal to change her story to support the false accusation of rape, and he wouldn’t revoke her probation from a previous conviction of embezzling $25,000 from her empolyer.

Mike Nifong got re elected by pandering to black voters more interested in convicting white boys than guilt or innocence.

Posted by: Betty Friedan at May 17, 2006 09:40 PM

Lawyers are waiting in the shadows for lucrative civil suit

A man stands in the shadows of the Duke Lacrosse 'rape' case…watching and waiting. While the three wealthy, white male students remains in criminal court, he is not likely to step forward.

Even at this early stage, the stripper’s mother is "very much interested" in "getting Willie E. Gary is a litigator renowned for winning huge settlements.

The stripper’s parents met with Gary in April. The meeting was facilitated by civil rights activist Rev. Jesse Jackson.

Gary acts as a family adviser, and the parents are laying groundwork to make a civil bid. Public opinion can be a large bargaining chip in obtaining a lucrative settlement. Earlier, the parents spoke freely; now they’re being more media savvy.

Essence Magazine featured three articles by Kristal Brent Zook. Each is sympathetic to the accuser. (1st) "Family Defends Daughter's Painful Past", (2nd) "Nowhere to Turn," depicts the accuser as living in terror. (3rd) is basically an announcement of Willie Gary's appearance in the case; it concludes by stating that the parents "worry that their daughter may…need additional legal guidance."

Civil law deals in torts or harms inflicted by one person upon another; its purposes are compensation for actual or perceived damages.

A "guilty" verdict in criminal court can be used to establish liability in a civil one but if the verdict is "not guilty" or the charges are dropped, a civil case can proceed independently.

Kobe Bryant settled out-of-court settlement. Such settlements are not necessarily admissions of guilt. After months of media blitz, Bryant may have been embarrassed to settle, so civil suits could be lucrative even if the “accuser’s” claim is completely fabricated. The Duke students will face the same choice?

Civil suits can be lucrative, and they’re easier to win; standards of evidence and other legal protections enjoyed by a defendant are significantly lowered in civil court.

Clearly, her parents wish to explore a civil proceeding. Gary is conspicuously available.

Posted by: Betty Friedan at May 18, 2006 09:46 PM

Comparing LAX case to that of Scottsboro Nine

I am a college instructor who teaches criminal justice and a criminal defense attorney. In my entire career I have never seen such a bizarre and unfair case as the one against three Duke lacrosse players.

I teach a class about a similar case in American history, the Scottsboro Nine. In March 1931, a group of nine black teen-agers was charged with rape on incredibly flimsy evidence in Scottsboro, Ala. The nine were originally charged with the rape of two white women. Even after one woman testified that she lied about the rape, the nine teens continued to face rape charges and the threat of death by execution.

In the Scottsboro case, the two women were part-time prostitutes, but that didn't matter, nor did it matter that at least one of the boys was known to be physically unable to have sex, and two of the boys were only 13. Like Durham, the real issue was race.

In Scottsboro, nine young men were wrongly charged and condemned because they were black, and today the Duke lacrosse players have, in my opinion, been wrongly charged and condemned because they are white and the alleged victim is black.

The one constant with respect to the two cases is racism. I often ask my students if it possible for blacks to discriminate against whites in the same type of mindless ignorance as the KKK or the way the mob went after the Scottsboro Nine. The answer I receive is yes, and my students point to Durham as proof.

May 20, 2006

Posted by: Betty Friedan at May 22, 2006 07:06 PM