Herald-Sun, The (Durham, NC) - April 7, 2006 City blasts lacrosse team Actions by police defended by officials Council members call alleged rapes appalling, horrific and abhorrent City officials on Thursday defended the Durham Police Department's handling of the investigation of an alleged gang rape, and blasted the Duke University men's lacrosse team that's at the heart of the controversy.
Durham officials defend cops in Duke case -May. 10, 2006
..Mayor Bill Bell said nothing suggests that officers haven’t vigorously investigated the case. His comments followed a report released by Duke on Monday concluding the university was slow to respond to the allegations partly because city police initially said the accuser “kept changing her story and was not credible.”
“If they just walked away from it and hadn’t attempted to pursue further investigation then that might merit some indication that they weren’t taking it seriously,” Bell said. “But as far as I know, they’ve been trying to investigate and get information.”NBC Sports
627. On March 29, 2006, a Joint Command meeting was held at Durham Police Headquarters. Those in attendance included Duke University and City of Durham officials with final policymaking authority over their respective institutions’ and employees’ involvement in the investigation. The final policymakers present included Nifong, Baker, Hodge, Russ, Graves, and Dean, and others who at least one Durham Police Officer knew to be senior Duke University Administrators.
628. Gottlieb and Himan were summoned to Durham Police Headquarters to report to the Joint Command on the status of the evidence in the investigation. This was one of the first of numerous Joint Command meetings held during the 13 month investigation.
629. Gottlieb and Himan failed to take (or produce in discovery) any notes they may have taken at any of the meetings they attended with the Duke-Durham Joint Command Staff or the Durham Command Staff. This was a practice in keeping with their failure to take or produce notes of meetings held with other co-conspirators, including Mangum, Nifong, Meehan, Clark, Levicy, Arico, Ripberger, Lamb, Hodge and Baker. The sum total of Gottlieb’s notes taken in meetings with their co-conspirators are three words—“discussed the case”—to describe the meeting in which Meehan and Clark advised Nifong, Gottlieb, and Himan of DNASI’s exonerating test results, and the meeting in which they all conspired to deprive Plaintiffs of their absolute right to those results.
630. Gottlieb has testified that there were so many Duke-Durham Joint Command Meetings that, if he had kept notes of what was said in them, he would notebooks full of them. Gottlieb prepared a typewritten timeline of the investigation early on for Baker’s use in briefing the City Council; however Baker deleted segments “to the point where it didn't say anything, and that is what [Baker] finally turned in.” No copy of Gottlieb’s complete timeline was preserved.
A. The SBI Lab’s testing of the rape kit contradicted Mangum’s basic allegation of rape;
B. Mangum’s descriptions ruled out 11 members of the lacrosse team as plausible suspects and two separate identification procedures utilizing only photos of the remaining 36 members of the lacrosse team ruled out those 36 members as plausible suspects;
C. They had no suspects, and no evidence that a rape occurred;
D. They had obtained a warrant to search Ryan McFadyen’s room, which was sealed by Judge Stephens, but when released would almost certainly cause his immediate and irreparable vilification;
E. The medical evidence was not consistent with a violent gang-rape, and the examination of Mangum was abandoned, clearly indicating the physician conducting the SAE did not believe Mangum’s claims;
F. Mangum made her rape claim under the threat of involuntary commitment in response to what appeared to be symptoms of a psychotic break with reality; and
G. Mangum recanted her claim when the threat of involuntary commitment was removed, and otherwise gave multiple self-contradicting accounts to multiple different individuals—all of whom were employed by either Duke University or the City of Durham—in the initial investigation conducted by Duke and Durham officers.
632. The Duke University and City of Durham policymakers present also knew or were then advised that alibis based upon machine generated, digital evidence had been prepared for each of the 47 team members, which individually proved each team member had no opportunity to commit the crime alleged, and collectively proved that the crime alleged could not have occurred. Further, they knew that Brodhead had refused a standing offer made by Plaintiffs’ defense counsel to present to him or his designee that evidence of innocence, and, further, that a similar offer was or would soon be refused by Nifong.
633. After the Joint Command meeting on March 29, 2006, the Chairman, the CMT Defendants, Duke Police Supervising Defendants, and the Durham Police Supervising Defendants all were aware of and willfully blind and/or deliberately indifferent to the repeated and ongoing violations of Plaintiffs’ constitutional rights by Nifong, Himan, the Himan Chain of Command, Addison, Michael, and the Addison/Michael Chain of Command, who, at the same time, willfully refused or failed to acknowledge, receive or seize the overwhelming evidence of innocence that had been amassed in the case.
634. Consistent with the Chairman’s Directive to force the trial and convictions—and a similar policy directive from Baker—the Joint Command directed Nifong, Himan, and the Himan Chain of Command to act swiftly to charge, prosecute, and convict Plaintiffs and/or their teammates.
635. The conduct of these Duke University and City of Durham officials with final policymaking authority with respect to the investigation of Mangum’s claims evinced their malicious and corrupt intent, and their deliberate indifference to the Plaintiffs’ constitutional rights
636. Knowing that Plaintiffs were innocent and that the course the policymakers had set for the investigation in the Joint Command meeting would cause extraordinary and unconscionable harms if allowed to continue, the Defendants nevertheless proceeded on that course. As a direct result, Plaintiffs were further subjected to public humiliation and vilification and the universal condemnation of hundreds of millions of people around the world.
637. The public acts and statements of Duke University’s policymaking officials, faculty, administrators, and staff, in concert with or consciously parallel to the acts and statements of Nifong, Addison and Gottlieb, the City of Durham and Duke University had stirred up local racial animus to a degree that the City and the University openly admitted that they feared that the outrage they had fomented would be turned, and directed upon City and University officials if there were no charges, no trial, and no convictions. The Duke-Durham Joint Command officials predicted race riots would ensue and “Durham would surely burn” if lacrosse players were not charged.
638. From this point forward, the City’s purposes coincided completely with those fixed for the University by the Chairman; what was “best for Duke” was also best for the City. Shortly thereafter, the City, Duke, and NCCU launched a media campaign, called “A Community of One.” It was designed to promote the image of the City, Duke, and NCCU all standing in solidarity against the white, “racist-rapists” on the lacrosse team. The media campaign culminated on the day of the first indictments with a large “Community of One” ad placed strategically in various newspapers.
639. All appearances of a legitimate investigation were abandoned, and replaced by a conspiracy whose final object was to prosecute and convict Plaintiffs and/or their teammates in the absence of probable cause, reasonable suspicion, or factual possibility for that matter, in violation of Plaintiffs’ constitutional rights.
640. In furtherance of that conspiracy, multiple conspiracies emerged, including but not limited to: an overarching conspiracy to stigmatize the Plaintiffs in conjunction with multiple deprivations of Plaintiffs’ significant interests for purposes of depriving Plaintiffs of a fair, impartial jury; several conspiracies to conceal exculpatory tangible, testimonial, and forensic evidence, several conspiracies to manufacture inculpatory tangible, testimonial, and forensic evidence; conspiracies to abuse multiple forms of legal process; conspiracies to invade the Plaintiffs’ federally protected private financial, banking, communications, and educational records and accounts without legal cause, and an overarching conspiracy not to intervene among all Defendants who had the power to prevent the wrongs they knew were conspired to be done to Plaintiffs over the course of the next year. amended complaint