Tuesday, August 22, 2006

In Search of One Courageous Editor

To Bob Ashley...in Search of One Courageous Editor
...
The press wrote about probation
And public urination
They counted every beer can at the curb
But now that Nifong's on the run
The cat's got Ashley's tongue.
His tee shirt now says: "Please Do Not Disturb!"
...
He asks if we've gone "insane?"
For Nifong there's no blame
Bob's hoping that the boys will go to trial
How very debonair
Oh, my...so laissez-faire!
It's easy when the accused is not your child!
...
Those 1800 pages
The lies on Newsweek pages
What will the folks of Durham remember most?
When the travesty stood bared
...
Who stood silent.
Who stood scared.
...
WHO will have the guts to call a hoax... a hoax?

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hoax sightings are much rarer than sightings of the much more common agenda in the MSM. We can all see the Hoax, but few are willing to call it's name.

Anonymous said...

Nice job liestoppers!!

Anonymous said...

I hope tonight's meeting of the Committee to Recall Nifong - Vote Cheek is full of people fed up to the gills with their newspaper's truly lousy coverage of this case.

ME said...

LieStoppers,

Your "Hoax Within A Hoax" series is eye-opening and a first rate expose.

I would like to submit the following as an addendum to my earlier "ME - Compendium of Dirty Deeds." Perhaps it would be most appropiate to add the following addendum to locate it between currently existing item #10 and the Footnote.



Addendum at Aug 22:

11) DA Nifong: "I did not accuse anybody of any crime. The only detail I revealed was that based on the medical exam, the woman was the victim of a sexual assault. ... I don't believe that constitutes trying a case in the media." Nifong said the foregoing in the context of defending himself against charges made by defense lawyers and legal experts that say Nifong may have crossed ethical lines in public comments about rape allegations involving Duke Lacrosse players, potentially prejudicing jurors and setting off a media maelstrom. N&O Apr 21

Nifong public statements that belie his protestation of innocence include:

"I'm not going to allow Durham's view in the minds of the world to be a bunch of lacrosse players at Duke raping a black girl from Durham." NBC Apr 12

"In this case, where you have the act of rape - - essentially a gang rape - - is bad enough in and of itself, but when it's made with racial with racial epithets against the victim, I mean, it's just absolutely unconscionable," said District Attorney Mike Nifong. ABC Mar 27

“The circumstances of the rape indicated a deep racial motivation for some of the things that were done,” Durham district attorney Mike Nifong said. “It makes a crime that is by its nature one of the most offensive and invasive even more so.” MSNBC Apr 3


12) On Mar 16 the DPD listed the complainant’s “cellular camera telephone” as an item to be seized during a search of 610 N. Buchanan Blvd. That cell phone was retrieved by DPD during the Mar 16 search of the defendant’s house.

During a May 18 hearing, attorney Osborn argued at length for a “proposed order” he sent to DA Nifong and Judge Stephens on May 2. The proposed order would direct two experts (one from Osborn and one from the DA’s office) to download data and phone calls from the complainant’s cell phone in such a manner as to properly preserve the cell phone’s stored data. During the course of providing information to Judge Stephens regarding whether or not the Judge should issue an order to extract the data from the complainant’s cell phone, DA Nifong made the following utterances:

(i) “I understand it [the cell phone] was seized and I assume it is in the custody of DPD.”

(ii) “It [the cell phone] would be evidence not with respect to anything contained therein [i.e. phone calls].”

(iii) “I wonder what evidence he [Osborn] thinks he is entitled to from the telephone.”

(iv) “We have our own, dare I use the term, ‘expert’ at DPD who is reviewing the cell phones that were seized...”

(v) “I do not know right off-hand.” (This last comment made in response to Judge Stephens inexplicably going off on a tangent as to whether or not the cell phone in question actually belonged to some unnamed “third party” rather than the complainant.)

[Note: each of the five comments is in chronological sequence. Note that some of the comments contradict earlier comments.]

In order for Judge Stephens (any other party listening to the hearing) to believe what Nifong said in his statements above to be truthful and forthcoming, the Judge would have to believe the following:

(i) The investigators did not ask the complainant in the two months between Mar 16 and May 18 about any calls she may have made in the hour preceding the Mar 13/14 party and about any calls during the party, or

(ii) the investigators did ask the complainant between Mar 16 and May 18 about any calls she may have made in the hour preceding the Mar 13/14 party and about any calls during the party, but the complainant told the investigators that she did not make any calls during the relevant time frame, or

(iii) the complainant told the investigators she did make calls in the hour preceding the Mar 13/14 party and during the party, but the investigators chose not to investigate the calls the complainant made, or

(iv) the complainant told the investigators she did make calls in the hour preceding the Mar 13/14 party and during the party, and the investigators investigated the calls, but chose not to divulge those calls to the DA’s office.

AND

The investigators failed to make any notation of any such questions to the complainant and her responses in their investigative notes during that two month time frame!!

Footnote: It is most important to keep in mind that the data ultimately preserved and retrieved from the complainant’s cell phone records provided evidence (known to date) of:

(i) Phone calls the complainant received in the minutes leading up to her arrival at the party which established her time of arrival after 11:39 p.m.

(ii) The phone call at 12:26 a.m. to Centerfold Escort Agency


13) DA Nifong personally signed paperwork that changed Kim Roberts/Pittman’s (second dancer at the Duke Lacrosse Mar 13/14 party) bail status. The change in bail status freed her from having to pay a $1,875 balance to her bail bondsman.

Nifong said the change in Ms. Roberts/Pittman bail status (and presumably DA Nifong’s personal handling of the change and personal signature on the paperwork) was “routine.” DA Nifong denied it had anything to do with the lacrosse case.

In his denial here’s what DA Nifong does not disclose to the public, facts that belie his comments –-

(i) On Mar 20 Roberts/Pittman gave statement to Duke Lacrosse case investigators that included: Roberts/Pittman said it was a “crock” that the complainant was sexually assaulted. She also said she was with the complainant the whole time until they left except for a period of less than five minutes when the complainant would not leave.

(ii) On Mar 22, two days after Roberts/Pittman gave her verbal statement to investigators and on the same day she provided a written statement to investigators, Roberts/Pittman was arrested on a probation violation charge stemming from an earlier embezzlement conviction.

(iii) On Apr 17, the same day two Duke Lax case defendants were indicted, Nifong personally requested a change in bond status for Roberts/Pittman. Nifong then personally signed paperwork that changed Roberts/Pittman’s bail status. The change in bail status freed her from having to pay a $1,875 balance to her bail bondsman.

(iv) Then on Apr 18, the day following her changed bail status, Ms. Roberts/Pittman’s “recollection” with regard to the events of Mar 14 changed radically from the oral and written statements she provided to investigators less than one month earlier. On Apr 18, Roberts/Pittman gave the first of several interviews where she provided the following public comments: "I was not in the bathroom when it happened, so I can't say a rape occurred -- and I never will,'' she told The Associated Press Apr 20. "In all honesty, I think they're guilty."

(v) Mark Simeon is Ms. Roberts/Pittman’s attorney. Mr. Simeon provided much needed support for DA Nifong in his May campaign for the office of the DA. Mr. Simeon went before the Durham Committee on the Affairs of Black People, a very influential group, and urged them to vote for Nifong. Simeon also invited Nifong his church, and introduced him to the African-American congregation and praised Nifong as a "good prosecutor."

(vi) Simeon has also agreed to represent Roberts/Pittman in any civil litigation that might stem from the lacrosse case.

(vii) Simeon also said he wants to represent the complainant in the Duke Lacrosse case in any future lawsuit.


14) Cab driver Moezeldin Elmostafa signed a sworn statement in April saying that on the night of a Duke Lacrosse party, he picked up Reade Seligmann and another player and drove them to an automated teller cash machine, a fast-food burger joint and then a campus dorm, thus providing Seligmann with an apparent alibi in defense of the rape charges filed against him.

Then in May, Duke Lacrosse case investigators Benjamin Himan and R.D. Clayton arrested Elmostafa on a 2003 misdemeanor warrant that stemmed from a cab ride Elmostafa gave to a woman in 2003. Elmostafa has said the warrant came after he gave the woman a cab ride to a department store.

Elmostafa said Investigators Himan and Clayton asked whether he had anything new to tell them about the rape case before driving him to the Durham County jail. "The detective asked if I had anything new to say about the lacrosse case," Elmostafa said. "When I said no, they took me to the magistrate." Elmostafa was then taken to jail and held for five hours, until a friend posted his bail.

With regard to the arrest of Elmostafa, DA Nifong made the following public comments:

"I would be very surprised if the officers [Himan and Clayton] even thought about using that [Elmostafa’s arrest] as an opportunity to ask him [Elmostafa] something [if Elmostafa had anything new to say about the lacrosse case]," Nifong said. The warrant for Elmostafa's arrest was discovered during a routine rundown of information about witnesses in the case, Nifong said in July.

Here’s what DA Nifong does not disclose to the public, facts that belie his comments –-

(i) Investigator Linwood Wilson said that DA Nifong wanted to be told when the taxi driver Moezeldin Elmostafa was arrested.

(ii) The District Attorney’s office or the Durham Police Department performed investigations on driver Elmostafa that included: a criminal record background check, examination of insurance and driving history, and an examination of several years' worth of drug tests (all of which were negative).

(iii) Elmostafa has said that once he learned about the theft, he assisted the store's security officers.

(iv) In 2003 the woman pleaded guilty to stealing purses valued at $250 from the department store.



ME

joan foster said...

ME, Thanks for your outstanding post! Absolutely amazing work..as we always see from you!

Anonymous said...

Today's letter to Bob Ashley and 100 of his closest friends:

---------------------------
To the Truthiness Squad at the Herald-Sun:

Having been exposed as Nifong's fluffer and the purveyor of happy-face fake news, Bob Ashley tries to reinvent himself in today's Herald-Sun editorial as Sam Waterston in "I'll Fly Away"

...or maybe as Gregory Peck in To Kill a Mockingbird.

http://www.heraldsun.com/opinion/hsedits/56-762880.html

In his newest incarnation, Ashley fancies himself the crusading white-knight defender of the powerless black community.

Only one problem, Ashley looks more like an oversized bald squirrel than a Hollywood star.

And he's fundamentally a dishonest weasel, not a moral paragon.

His choice of race man hero in that editorial is also problematic.

See, Tim Tyson, native of Oxford, is himself a foaming bigot.

Hardly the guy to lead a movement for racial harmony.

Don't believe it?

Here's some audio of Mr. Tyson calmly discussing the Lacrosse case:

http://www.ibiblio.org/wunc_archives/sot/index.php?cat=15

Listen as the loony Tyson spews one racist sentiment after another,labeling his own students “white supremacists” and “slave masters” before spinning entirely out-of-control at the end of the interview.

Poor Bob Ashley, another misstep for Nifong's towel boy.

It seems like Durham may be getting the newspaper editor they deserve

NDLax84 said...

Outstanding, ME!

Apropos this thread, and the "anonymous" 4p post: Tuesday With Mikey

Anonymous said...

BTW my letter to the Herald-Sun staff tomorrow is entitled:

"The internet "Bob Ashley" becomes more interesting and lifelike than the original person"

The first two lines are:

Given how dull and sycophantic the real Bob Ashley is, his fake internet personae was bound to become a more complete and interesting human being than the actual carbon form.

It happened yesterday...

ME said...

joan and NDLax,

Thanks much.

NDLax, your "Tuesday With Mikey" is great. At one time I poked fun at M. Sill about her concept of High Tea Blogging. I shared your very witty "Tuesday With Mikey" with Sill today at her blog:

Melanie,

At one time I had a little fun with you regarding your concept of High Tea Blogging.

Our buddy NDLax captures the spirit of the concept wonderfully here:

http://crystalmess.blogspot.com/2006/08/tuesday-with-mikey.html

This is a must see!!


ME

Anonymous said...

Thank you Liestoppers.

You are performing a valuable community service, especially with the local media being in the tank on this subject.

LieStoppers said...

ME - Your compendium has been addendum-ed.

NDLax84 said...

Joan, I think you missed the irony of my "You're not honorable enough" comment here. Please see my response to yours. It'd be a huge bummer to find I'd unintentionally offended you, of all people. You're one of the good ones! And we're on the same team!

Cheers,

Mike