Tuesday, October 17, 2006

The Hoax Laid Bare

The impact of '60 Minutes' expose’ of District Attorney Mike Nifong’s hijacked hoax is readily apparent. A brief review of some of the comments the big tractor has elicited leaves little doubt that the injustice the we, and other bloggers, have been hollering about for months is now common knowledge across the country. From coast to coast, millions of people now know that Nifong is the embodiment of prosecutorial misconduct.

Comments on ‘60 Minutes’ exposure of the Hoax:
Ray Greenberg , The Herald-Sun:
“Sunday's report by '60 Minutes' on the Duke University lacrosse case delivered a wounding blow to District Attorney Mike Nifong's image” Herald Sun
Durham minister Carl Kenney:
“Kenney, who's talked with the accuser's family and says he's heard "a lot of information that's not making sense," said the hit the program administered to the DA was "a big one." Herald Sun
NCCU law professor Irving Joyner:
“Joyner -- who's been monitoring the case for the state NAACP -- said Nifong's early comments 'went over the line.' He said Durham police mishandled the investigation by being slow to search the team captains' house at 610 N. Buchanan Blvd., by not questioning witnesses more and by not looking harder at and for medical evidence.”
ABC News Consultant Joe Tacopina:
"The lack of scientific evidence is starting to pile up. Now, when her friends are calling her a liar, there's really not much left for this prosecution." ABC
Michael Gaynor:
"It finally will be obvious to all but the oblivious that there was no kidnapping, or rape, or sexual offense, but there was a false accusation and an opportunistic prosecutor fighting for his job" Renew America
CBS legal analyst Mickey Sherman:
"It shows an incredible amount of confidence in your case. You didn't see lawyers sitting next to these guys," he said. "And the fact they would just submit themselves tells me the lawyers believe their clients and believe in their clients and they are able to handle any cross examination in court, much less the interrogation of Ed Bradley." CBS
John in Carolina:

Almost everyone “on the fence” will now say: “These kids are innocent. That DA with the soda cup in his hand is the guilty one. Why isn’t he in jail?” JiC

TDD's Sound and the Fury:
"60 Minutes embarrassed District Attorney Nifong with a 30-minute segment that essentially did the work that Nifong apparently never did....for America to be able to listen to Professor Coleman criticize Nifong as adeptly and intelligently as he did; and for America to hear the “other” stripper negate the allegations as flatly as she did; and for America to watch as the alibi for one player was laid out as clearly as it was will help to move the discussion on the lacrosse imbroglio forward, and hopefully put more pressure on DA Nifong to reconsider the case he has so incompetently yet aggressively built...Additionally, Coleman was quoted in the New York Times as follows: '[Nifong] has forgotten about his obligation to protect the innocent, and in my view, that’s prosecutorial misconduct.' Nifong ought to drop the case tomorrow, and be reprimanded accordingly." TDD
Jared Mueller, The Chronicle:
"The double-length segment, reported by 19-time-Emmy-winner Ed Bradley, was a broadside against the case and the professional ethics of Durham District Attorney Mike Nifong."

Editorial, The Chronicle:

"For an analytical and well known program such as "60 Minutes" to come down so decisively on one side of a highly controversial case seems significant. The show, anchored by Ed Bradley, highlighted several discrepancies in the prosecution's case and exposed instances of questionable conduct on the part of Durham officials over the past six months."
Duff Wilson, New York Times:
"In a telephone interview last night, Mr. Coleman said, “He has forgotten about his obligation to protect the innocent, and in my view, that’s prosecutorial misconduct.”

"Mr. Nifong has said that he, the police and the woman are determined to take the case to trial despite a tide of criticism. Mr. Nifong has said that there is medical evidence of rape and that the woman made valid identifications of the suspects, both points challenged by “60 Minutes” after what the show said was a review of nearly the entire case file." NY Times

Sister Toldjah:
"Essentially what happened here, as La Shawn Barber notes in her lengthy piece on the case, is District Attorney Mike Nifong - the prosecutor - pandered to black people and played up the race card for all it was worth. Why? Because he was playing politics, that’s why. He wanted to get re-elected...He could do this, of course, and get away with it...They race bait without suffering the consequences from doing so - in fact, they’re usually rewarded time after time with re-election, just as Nifong was. This is what happens when voters are swayed by emotions via impassioned pleas from people in positions of power (and dramatic biased stories from the MSM) rather than facts."
Sister Toldjah
Betsy Newmark:
"Ed Bradley did a great job in laying out how clear it is that the three accused Duke lacrosse players are innocent of all charges against them and that Mike Nifong, the Durham D.A. has conducted a vendetta against these young men in order to get himself elected." Betsy Newmark
LaShawn Barber:
"Rather than playing hard left politics, the old dudes actually did what journalists are supposed to do: present facts to the American people. Host Ed Bradley said “60 Minutes” examined the case file, and it raised concerns about the police who investigated the alleged gang-rape and Mike Nifong, the district attorney in charge of the flimsy case...If anyone out there still believes David Evans, Reade Seligmann, or Collin Finnerty raped a black stripper on March 13, 2006, you’re willfully deaf and blind. And stupid." LaShawn Barber
Jason Whitlock, Kansas City Star:
"The charges against the Duke lacrosse players should be dropped immediately, and the people demanding the dismissal the loudest and most forcefully should be the very people who have made a living allegedly fighting against racial injustice."

"I've said this before, but it's worth saying again: Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton should be in Durham, N.C., today, promising civil disobedience until the charges are dropped and prosecutor Mike Nifong resigns."

"Anyone who has been mistreated by law enforcement or had a friend or family member treated unjustly by our criminal-courts system should be concerned about what is transpiring in Durham."

"It is in the best interest of all black people, especially poor black people, that black people with a voice and a platform call for an end to the persecution of the Duke lacrosse players and program."

"Speaking out in support of the wealthy Duke players enhances our credibility when we claim that someone poor and black is being treated unfairly. Poor people need that credibility because they can't afford to make bail, let alone a team of high-priced attorneys."

"By remaining silent about this obvious miscarriage of justice, black leadership looks as racist and cowardly as it paints white people who ignore obvious mistreatment of blacks."
"Standing up for Seligmann, Finnerty and Evans would be standing up against injustice, and what we're learning is that injustice recognizes opportunity more than color. In America, there is more opportunity for injustice to visit poor people of color. Their best defense is standing against all injustice, regardless of race." Whitlock
Earl Ofari Hutchinson, The Huffington Post:
"Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson and NAACP President Bruce Gordon should've cautioned blacks against a rush to judgment to condemn the accused without all the facts. They didn't. Their great fear is that if they rebuke blacks that abuse race to grab headlines that would be tantamount to race treason. That's a false fear. If anything, a swift and firm denunciation of the race card in rape cases would enhance the credibility of black leaders. It would show that they are willing to make the tough call and criticize other blacks when they justly deserve criticism."
"There are no winners in the Duke case. The dubious allegations of rape cost the Lacrosse head coach his job. It wrecked the season for the team. It sullied the reputation of the players who appear to have been falsely accused. It inflamed racial tensions in Durham, North Carolina. It pitted black and white students against each other on the campus. It gave legions of talking head commentator's fresh ammunition to blast blacks as eternal whiners about race, and ever ready to circle the wagons and lambaste whites for real or imagined racial misconduct. It reinforced the ancient stereotype that black women are sexually loose, and if they are the victim of sexual attack, that they bring it on themselves by their profligate behavior. That's a steep price to pay for a rape that perhaps was not a rape." The Danger of Screaming Race in Rape
For months, the District Attorney has been able to hide his Nifonging by issuing multiple public statements falsely condemning the innocent “suspects“, dodging discovery, reinventing the Theory of the Hoax, and continually deceiving the public, the media and the court into trusting that he actually had a reason other than political ambition to bring forward these charges. Today, the world knows that Mike Nifong is a man without conscience, who willfully persists with a case without merit by means of deception, race baiting, and deliberate failure to allow an honest investigation.

Two of the new revelations presented by ‘60 Minutes’ further expose the violations of public trust committed by DA Nifong. With a videotape of the accuser performing at a strip club two weeks after the allegations that, as Mr. Nifong claimed before Judge Smith, left her “too traumatized” to speak as late as April 11, ‘60 Minutes’ exposed Mr. Nifong’s diagnosis as an apparent petty ploy to avoid revealing the details of his conversation with the accuser. Airing Ms. Robert’s admission that she uttered the first racial sling shortly before leaving the party puts to rest the false suggestion by Nifong, and others, that this non-event was motivated by racism.

Hearing esteemed law professor James Coleman, who clearly pronounced Mr. Nifong guilty of pandering to the black community was the highlight to the show.
“Professor Coleman believes that the three indicted players are victims in this case – victims of an overzealous prosecutor who pandered to the black community in the middle of an election campaign."
"I think that he pandered to the community by saying 'I'm gonna go out there and defend your interests in seeing that these hooligans who committed the crime are prosecuted. I'm not gonna let their fathers, with all of their money, buy you know big-time lawyers and get them off. I'm doing this for you.' You know, what are you to conclude about a prosecutor who says to you, 'I'll do whatever it takes to get this set of defendants?' What does it say about what he's willing to do to get poor black defendants," Coleman asks.

Asked if he thinks the D.A. committed prosecutorial misconduct, Coleman says, "Yes, I mean I think that’s the whole point. And if this case resulted in a conviction, I think there would be a basis to have the conviction overturned based on his conduct. I think in this case, it appears that this prosecutor has set out to develop whatever evidence he could to convict people he already concluded were guilty." '60 Minutes'
With clarity and precision, ‘60 Minutes’ presented the rampant misconduct and woeful absence of investigation to a nation of viewers who have been deceived by Mr. Nifong and by complicit media outlets both locally and nationwide. In many ways, the damage caused by DA Nifong and his enablers is irreparable as, sadly, the harm he and they have caused these young men and their families will not be erased regardless of how many people come to know that the Hoax is nothing more than a Nifonging.


Anonymous said...

Dear Liestoppers,
I have two items I would like to submit. Listening to Tucker from another room, I THINK I heard him say that he couldn't find anyone to come on his show and provide a counter arguement to his opinion that the charges should be dropped. Has Wendy given up? Please check this out if you can.
Second, Susan Filan was on MSMBC around 11:45 AM and she is still fighting for the Fong. She told a big lie and as Liestoppers, you need to jump on her. We'll be right behind you. She said that Dave Evan's DNA was on a nail found in his trash. This is a big fat LIE. The video is on the net at MSMBC. Liestoppers, do what you do best. Stop that lie!!!

Anonymous said...

Dear Liestoppers,
I would like to add that Susan Filan was on the Rita Cosby show
yesterday afternoon. She said that DA Nifong is under no obligation to interview the defendants to get their side of the story. Also she said that as long as the accuser can id the defendents, that is all the DA needs. He doesn't need to question the defendants. This sounds idiotic to me. I wonder if she would condone such misconduct if it were her son being unjustly accused. I think Rita Cosby and the rest of the bunch on MSNBC are defending the accuser not because she is telling the truth, but again its a way to get ratings. Someone should tell Dan Abrams to hire some TV journalists that have the intelligence to recognize this "fantastic lie" being perpetrated by Nifong and the accuser. We want the truth not spin. P.S. Rita Cosby's voice is soooooooo annoying. No wonder she was removed from prime time. I guess thats why she left FOX for MSNBC. She's all glitz and no substance.

Anonymous said...

Susan Filan stating that Nifong is under no obligation to interview Colin and Reade is mind boggling. Furthermore, to say this woman can "id" the rapists is a joke. If there had been a legitimate lineup and evidence that pointed toward the guilt of these young men, then yes, he should move forward. However, this case's lack of evidence is overwhelming. If Susan Filan represents the thinking of prosecutors in this country, the judicial system is in serious trouble. I find her comments extremely disturbing. Do prosecutors only care about a "win" versus justice? Is it just a big game to them and the heck with the lives they ruin? This case is a big eye opener about the state of justice in the U.S. if Susan Filan considers this a case that should go to trial.

Anonymous said...

Anon @ 7:17 AM,

Good comment and good catch on the lie.

On Anon @ 8:22 AM,

I agree with you, including about Cosby.

When Cosby left for MSNBC the folks at Fox must have felt the same way many sensible Duke people felt when Houston Baker announced he was leaving for Vanderbilt.

"Go Vandy!!"


Anonymous said...

I watched the 60 Minutes special, and while a discarded fingernail was found with an incomplete DNA match of one of the residents in the house, it had been exposed to the type of shmutz you would expect to find in a bathroom garbage can as it was found and in no way enhances DA Nifong's case.

I even remember reading in my local newspaper that a feminist University of Southern California law professor and victims' rights advocate cited prosecutorial misconduct, something I find akin to a Republican or Democrat complaining about one of their own hitting below the belt. Such people do not make such statements lightly and without very good reason. At this point, my only question is if the North Carolina State Bar Association will go with suspension or disbarment for Nifong.

Anonymous said...

Oh, and if Duke needs a coach, fans of the Alabama Crimson Tide will be happy to send them ours. Then again, it's not as if he can do any real damage at Duke, either as a head coach or an opposing coach.

It may be true that prosecutors are not required to talk to the accused. I'm no expert, so I'll leave that one alone. However, they are required to examine and consider exculpatory evidence and refrain from the prejudicial statements seen in the mishandling of this case. On both counts, Nifong failed, if not quite in the most spectacular manner I've ever seen, then certainly in the most public.

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