Upon Information and Belief
n. a phrase often used in legal pleadings (complaints and answers in a lawsuit), declarations under penalty of perjury, and affidavits under oath, in which the person making the statement or allegation qualifies it. In effect, he/she says: "I am only stating what I have been told, and I believe it." Law Dictionary
A Serious Allegation is made in the civil complaint
In the civil complaint filed last week a serious allegation was levied against Duke University which has far reaching repercussions for the future of the Duke Officials named in the civil lawsuit. The plaintiff’s attorneys said "Upon Information and Belief" they believe that Duke University Officials were informed in a meeting in late March that there would be no DNA matching any of the members of the Lacrosse Team to Crystal Gail Mangum's body swabs. Further the attendees of that meeting were also informed of her failure to ID any Lacrosse player in two attempts.
Civil Complaint- pages 106-107
IX. DNA Evidence Dispositively Exonerates The Lacrosse Players But Is Ignored By Defendants
A. The State Bureau Of Investigation's DNA Testing Results Are Negative
By March 28, on information and belief, the State Bureau of Investigation ("SBI") concluded an initial examination of the rape-kit evidence from the forensic examination of Mangum at Duke Hospital, and the DNA samples from the lacrosse players. On March 28 or March 29, the SBI gave an initial report to Nifong regarding its analysis of these materials.
The SBI reported to Nifong that their examination of the rape kit items had not discovered any semen, blood, or saliva on any of the rape kit items. The absence of semen, blood, or saliva was obviously highly exculpatory, given Mangum's stories at Duke Hospital, which had alleged a violent gang rape without condoms and with ejaculation into both her mouth and her vagina or anus.
306. Either the same day or the next, Duke officials met with key members of Nifong's investigative team and the Durham city government, including Gottlieb, Himan, Durham City Manager Patrick Baker, and Durham Police Chief Steve Chalmers, among others. Duke's administration was represented by Aaron Graves, Duke's Vice President for Campus Security, Duke Police Director Dean, and perhaps other Duke officials. On information and belief, this was the first of several meetings held between Duke and Durham officials during the ensuing investigation. On information and belief, at this meeting, Nifong, Gottlieb, and Himan reported to Duke and Durham officials that Mangum's accounts of the attack were patently inconsistent, that the SBI lab results had come back negative, and that Mangum had failed to identify any alleged attackers in two separate photo arrays.
John Burness, Duke's chief spokesman, later said that the meeting "was just about the ways the university could assist in the investigation." Gottlieb said in his deposition that Duke Police came to "several" meetings of this same group.
On information and belief, the purpose of this meeting was to coordinate approaches to bolstering the prosecution's case, which was rapidly disintegrating in the face of Mangum's inability to identify any of her purported attackers in the March 16 and March 21 photo arrays and the SBI's report that initial analysis of the rape kit evidence showed no blood, semen, or saliva.
On information and belief, during this meeting, the Durham Investigators, the Durham Supervisors, and/or other Durham city officials agreed to expedite the identifications and arrests of Duke lacrosse players, notwithstanding evidence demonstrating the lacrosse players' innocence. On information and belief, Duke Police were present and agreed to cooperate in this expedited effort to make identifications and arrests notwithstanding the evidence. Duke Lawsuit
Were City Manager Baker, Durham Police Chief Chalmers, and Duke University officials getting briefings by Durham Police Investigators? According to the complaint on March 29th Nifong & the Police Investigators knew these charges were most likely false and there was wasn't any data to indict anyone. Over a year later NC AG Cooper's investigation confirmed these results and declared the three indicted Duke students totally innocent. There was no sexual assault and the allegations against the team were false. One wonders when presented with the briefing did the Duke Officials raise objections to Durham's Chief of Police Chalmers and his Police Investigators? Did they immediately inform Duke President Brodhead and the Crisis Management Team?
Nifong withheld that critical information from the Lacrosse Team attorneys for 13 days until the SBI DNA results were released. No one suspected that Duke Officals knew it also. One can only imagine the effect of those preliminary DNA results being released to the defense attormeys on March 29th. The case would have collapsed, as it should have.
If, as it is alleged, why didn't the Duke Crisis Management Team with President Brodhead try to calm down the Duke Community when a Duke Senior Official & the Duke's Police Chief knew the charges were most likely false? On Thursday, March 30, 2006 Brodhead sent out an e-mail to all parents and students.
...This is a difficult time at Duke. Allegations have been made that, if verified, will justify all of our outrage and call for very severe penalties. On the other hand, we need to remember that allegation is not the same thing as conviction, and that we must not prejudge until the facts are established. The Durham police will have our full cooperation in expediting their investigation.... E-mail
...“It's understandable to feel badly when terrible things may have happened at a place you love, and I've heard from many of you who have expressed sadness, anger, outrage and frustration about the lacrosse situation,” Brodhead wrote in an e-mail message to alumni. “Let me also say that as painful as these times are, the test of a school is not preventing bad things from ever happening, but in addressing them in an honest and forthright way. In my meetings with students, faculty, and administrators, I believe Duke is doing just that...” e-mail
Why did Brodhead send these e-mails when Senior Officials allegedly knew that the charges had no basis in fact? Clearly they were adding credence to the allegations at a time when the fate of the 46 innocent players was being decided in local protests, the local media, and by a national press & TV pundits. Some of the Lacrosse Team members were in fear of their safety and were being verbally abused on campus and in class by some professors. A calming voice was needed, it never came.
On April 5th Brodhead sealed the fate of the Lacrosse Team by cancelling the season and firing Coach Pressler. He did this after McFadyen's e-mail was selectively released, out of context in the search warrant, by Judge Stephens for no legitimate reason. Brodhead & Duke professors were well aware of the book "American Psycho" sick parody of a white Wall Street broker's sex crimes. It was still required reading in some of Duke's classes as late as last year. How could Brodhead have cancelled the season when his own Police Chief & Senior VP Official knew the charges were most likely false? One cannot imagine them not reporting to the Crisis Management Team.
I have canceled the men’s lacrosse season and all associated activities, effective immediately. Lacrosse Coach Mike Pressler has submitted his resignation to Athletics Director Joe Alleva, effective immediately. Brodhead
What did Duke know & when did they know it?
The questions we must ask from this Lacrosse Team lawsuit combined with the information and allegations in the Evans-Seligmann-Finnerty & Archer-McFadyen-Wilson lawsuit are these.
What were the real reasons Duke had to get Lacrosse Team off the cover of National Magazines as Chairman of the Board Steel said. If it wasn't about the truth as said to Coach Pressler in his book, "It's Not About the Truth." What was it about?
Has any member of Duke University or DUMC's staff been chastised or reprimanded for their conduct or performance in this Hoax/Frame?
Has the Duke Board of Trustees been fully briefed on this Hoax/Frame by someone other than the defendants in the lawsuits?
Finally did Duke University have good reason to suspect that the Lacrosse Team never committed these crimes and yet sacrificed them for political expediency in the face of activist pressure from the Duke's professors, pot-banging activists, Duke employees, local special interest groups, City of Durham Leaders, and a local & national press operating on false & malicious statements from DA & PD sources?
How could they be so indifferent when an injustice was occurring to their students?
One wonders why Brodhead & Duke took this course of action?
27.24 So when Pilate saw that he was gaining nothing, but rather that a riot was beginning, he took water and washed his hands before the crowd, saying, "I am innocent of this man's blood; see to it yourselves."Gospel of Matthew