Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Yet Another Hoax Within A Hoax

In an article published today on Slate.com, highly respected legal journalist Stuart Taylor eviscerates DA Nifong, Sgt. Gott-Lies and the New York Times in an eloquent and powerful piece that accomplishes in one offering what we have exhausted far too many words in trying to accomplish. Similar to Taylor’s earlier takedown of the Duke Group of 88, he cuts right to the point and states,
“With comical credulity, it [the Times article] features as its centerpiece a leaked, transparently contrived, 33-page police sergeant's memo that seeks to paper over some of the most obvious holes in the prosecution's evidence.”
Taylor exposes Sgt. Gott-Lies for the fraud he is, and points to not only the transparent concoction that Gott-Lies presented as his “notes”, but also reveals that Gott-Lies has pursued a vendetta-like persecution of Duke students for years. As noted here and on many other blogs, it is simply inconceivable that the accuser described her alleged attackers the way Gott-Lies now “remembers” it four months later.

Gott-Lies would have us believe that he took no handwritten notes during the interview with the accuser, but typed up her precise descriptions months later from memory. First, as defense attorney Wade Smith has noted, “How can you interview the most important witness you've ever interviewed in your life and not take notes?" Second, why are Gott-Lies’ descriptions so different, in fact opposite, from those contemporaneously recorded by his partner Himan? Third, why if, as Gott-Lies “remembers”, the accuser described one suspect as “young, blonde hair, baby faced, tall and lean,” would the police leave Collin Finnerty, baby faced and listed at 6-foot-3, 175 pounds, out of not just the first photo line-up on March 16th, but also the second photo line-up on March 21st?

Taylor also destroys another prosecution theory parroted by the Times—the possible presence of a date rape drug. The Times reported,
"Toxicological screening is not standard, unless specially requested, in a rape exam in North Carolina. No such request was made that night. Defense lawyers said it would have shown drugs or alcohol. The Durham police have speculated that the test might have found a date-rape drug, records show; they have also theorized that the trauma of rape itself might have been responsible for her condition."
Taylor reports that there was a toxicology report, that the toxicology report was negative for date rape drugs, and that the defense was just recently notified of the report’s existence. To one unfamiliar with the comings and goings of this hoax (like say, a reporter at the New York Times), this information may seem minor, compared to the other explosive exculpatory evidence and instances of police and prosecutorial misconduct Taylor recounts in his article. However, the date rape drug theory was advanced by the District Attorney himself in April and has fueled speculation on television and the internet for the past 4 months. We were told time and again that the presence of a date rape drug would not only show the rape was premeditated, but would also account for all the inconsistencies in the accuser’s story. For example, on April 28th, Wendy Murphy told Nancy Grace,
“by May 15, if we hear there were date rape drugs in her blood, and the broomstick was recovered with her DNA…this case is over.”
Nifong first advanced this theory to Susannah Meadows of Newsweek, who wrote an article on April 18th that stated the following:
“What does it mean that she was intoxicated?” said Nifong.
Just as an example--speaking hypothetically--if I had a witness who saw her right before this and she was not intoxicated, and then I had a witness who said that she was given a drink at the party and after taking a few sips of that drink acted in a particular way, that could be evidence of something other than intoxication, or at least other than voluntary intoxication,” Nifong told Newsweek.
“There are many explanations for someone appearing to be intoxicated,” he said.
Asked if he had any evidence suggesting this scenario took place the night of the alleged rape, Nifong responded,
“I don’t have any evidence that I want to talk to you about right now.”
Still speaking hypothetically, he went on to say that depending on the circumstances, an alleged victim’s intoxication might make her a more credible witness.

A more appropriate answer to Ms. Meadows’ questions would have been that Nifong didn’t have any evidence, perhaps had evidence to the contrary, and that he was making the date rape drug story up the same way he made up the choke hold and the condoms story up after the DNA tests came back negative. Nifong’s comments to Newsweek prompted defense attorneys for Reade Seligmann to file a motion on May 22nd, four days after receiving 1300 pages that Nifong described in court as his “entire file,” asking the District Attorney to produce the famed toxicology report. The motion noted that "The SANE nurse specifically checked a box on the Sexual Assault Exam Report indicating that toxicology samples were not collected. See Discovery, pg. 543.”

Reversing course (similar to past promises of positive DNA tests), Nifong denied a toxicology report existed. When asked specifically about the report in court on June 22nd, “Durham County District Attorney Mike Nifong told the court…he did not have a toxicology report to turn over, although he later refused to say if such a test was performed.” This denial allowed the speculation to continue and the last remaining Nifong-defenders to hold out hope a date rape drug test would appear, while Nifong-critics fretted that the test must have been hidden because of positive results for alcohol or street drugs.

Some SANE nurses even told the press that they don’t perform toxicology reports because, according to UNC Hospitals sexual-assault nurse examiner Emilia Frederick, defense attorneys often use the information against victims. So after months of suggestion, speculation, and misinformation we finally learn from Stuart Taylor that the toxicology report exists and there were no date rape drugs.

That answers two questions, but many more remain.
  • Did the toxicology report reveal the presence of alcohol or other drugs?
  • How in the world was this information kept from the defense despite North Carolina’s open file discovery law?
  • Considering that the accuser was taken to the hospital in the early morning on March 14th, how could it be that on June 22nd Nifong had no toxicology report to turn over?
  • Was it lost?
  • Was it only in Gott-Lies memory and still yet to be transcribed?
  • Was it only in someone else’s memory?
  • What possible justification was there for Nifong’s speculation to Newsweek and his statement “I don’t have any evidence that I want to talk to you about right now”?

The only logical conclusion that we can come to is that now we have Yet Another Hoax Within a Hoax.

Thank you, Stuart Taylor for further shaming Nifong, Gott-Lies and the New York Times.

Witness for the Prosecution?


Anonymous said...

Right now I think it is time for
DA Nifong,
Sgt Gottlieb,
Inspector Himan,
Officer Clayton,
Asst DA Saacks,
Investigator Linwood Wilson
SANE Nurse -in -Training Levicy
to start hiring attorneys.

Wow! What a Hoax

Anonymous said...

Stuart Taylor is honest and follows the evidence.

LieStoppers has proved invaluable in getting out the truth. I salute you in your efforts to see justice is done. The wit and energy on this site is amazing.


Anonymous said...

When Stuart Taylor highlights the NYT for their racially convenient fable, "This fits the Times's long-standing treatment of the case as a fable of evil, rich white men running amok and abusing poor black women," he could have extended that to the entire media.

The Media loved the angle of roving bands of evil white men searching for innocent black women to denegrate late at night. This was, by no means, limited to the NYT. This was the media mantra. The Black Freso football team accused of raping an 11 year old girl received totally different treatment. Most people still have no heard of that case.

Possibly the worst injustice is that the media after crucifying these lacrosse players have no interest in reporting on the story now that the truth is coming out. There is no integrity, no obligation felt, no consistency. They have walked away and aren't in the least bit interested.

I expect we'll see stories pondering whether Jimmy Hoffa has been found and
of course journalists love to travel to Aruba; but, they have avoided this story at all costs since it has taken on a different complexion.


NDLax84 said...

Betcha dollars to doughnuts Levicy says Gottlieb is a liar.

Anonymous said...

Donuts? Someone say Donuts?

What is this a Gottlieb Baiting Station?

I just checked the trap, we got us a Linwood !

Anonymous said...

What's that approachingsound the DA's office hears? It's the Hounds of Justice!