Recent Outcry  

  The Duke University Gang Rape Scandal 

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David Evans Found Guilty

June 27, 2006

David Evans was found guilty of violating a noise ordinance during an incident at his home in January of 2006. Evans was told to pay court costs.

DA Nifong had the charge reinstated after news of the infamous March 13 lacrosse stripper party and underaged drinking surfaced.




DWI for Duke Athletic Director's Son

Joe Alleva, athletic director for Duke University, and his son were involved in a boating accident on June 23. Authorities have charged Alleva's son, Joseph David (J.D.) Alleva, with DWI.

Authorities said the boat carrying Alleva and his son was driving too fast and struck a group of rocks. Joe Alleva was treated at Person Memorial Hospital for a head injury which required 42 stitches.

At the time of the incident, authorities said the director's son refused a Breathalyzer test and was later charged with operating a motorboat while impaired.

Joseph David Alleva has a prior DWI conviction in 2002.






PDF file -- Defense Request for "Bill of Particulars" June 26, 2006





Duke Art

TRICK PHOTOGRAPHY

June 22, 2006

As fast as they could, the all-star athletes on Duke's lacrosse team ran to cable TV reporters with digital images they proclaimed would prove their innocence. While photos of minors being served alcohol isn't exactly a picture of purity, the evidence did initially appear to catch the accuser in a lie.

The two snapshots taken at 12:30 had to have followed any alleged attacks, because -- according to defense attorney Eckstrand -- beyond that point in time, the accuser never re-entered the house. And yet instead of nursing her wounds and crying, the accuser is captured grinning and busily checking her purse.

Those photos, however, deserve a second look. After closer inspection by a jury, Duke's digital proof may turn out to be the only concrete evidence of the lacrosse team's lies.

Assuming the camera's time-stamp wasn't altered -- and was correct to begin with -- the first oddity is the 30-minute gap.

Several drunken party shots are being snapped at fairly regular intervals -- until 12:03:57. All of a sudden, at 12:03:57, the pictures stop. At that point, whoever was enjoying recording the random events of the evening, thought better of it.

Coincidentally, 12:03:57 is the exact time Reade "Re-Dial" Seligmann makes the first of his frantic phone calls.

A photo of one drunken player is taken at 12:10, and after that, the photographer put his camera away.

The next pictures weren't taken until 12:30. Lacrosse lawyers never identified the owner of the camera. Nor did they clarify whether or not the original photographer was still using the camera at 12:30. But those photos are decidedly different than the previous ones.

The photographer is no longer capturing the lacrosse players' party, but rather, documenting the escort. In 30 seconds, 4 photos are quickly taken of the woman from different angles. In each, she is alone and isolated.

For those four, frozen seconds in time -- the accuser seems to be standing on her own, looks like she's coherent, and appears to be happy. But according to defense attorney Bill Thomas, "the young lady was substantially impaired" and falling down drunk when she arrived shortly before 12:00. She can't have been sober and content at 12:30.

The next pictures show her true overall condition. Taken at 12:37 and 12:38, the accuser is photographed completely passed out on the steps -- and she isn't laughing.

Unlike the candid camera work before midnight, the photos taken after 12:30 don't make sense. They seem stage-managed and faked. And if they ARE posed, that would imply the team knew a crime had occurred and hastily created what would appear to be proof of their innocence.

Perhaps the most curious thing about the Blue Devils' digital pics, is that there are no lacrosse players standing around in the alley in the 12:30 shots. Their drunken faces are strangely missing from the photographic evidence.

No players can be seen in the passed-out pictures taken at 12:38. No team members are milling about in the background, or moving in to help the woman. And yet we know at least one other person -- besides the photographer -- was standing in the alley. In the final photo at 12:41, a single player is captured -- from the back -- reaching to help the accuser into the black car.

It's likely that the photos of the accuser -- by herself on the porch, and then alone in the alley -- were staged.

They don't look at all like the rowdy crowd-scene the taxicab driver described. The photos don't convey any sense of the hostile, ugly, 20-person argument that neighbor, Jason Bissey reported.

Proof that the team attempted to conceal their crime with manufactured evidence -- would be proof of their consciousness of guilt.



"At this point, anywhere from 12:20 a.m. to 12:30 a.m., I observed 20 to 30 young men in the alley between my residence and 610 Buchanan, and on the sidewalk in front of my building. From the front living room of my house, I heard these men yelling amongst themselves about money."
-- Jason Bissey police statement


"They were both totally lucid. [The accuser] was not impaired in any way, I remember clearly. It was a kind of a long way to walk so it would have been pretty clear if she was messed up."
-- Jason Bissey, News Observer, 4/20/06



"You could argue that something might have happened in that period between 12:10 and 12:30. The defense would say, though, that because she's smiling in the photo taken at 12:31, it would be hard to believe that she had been brutally raped."
-- Duke graduate and cable TV star, Dan Abrams -- 4/19/06 MSNBC





taxi





"I wish you wouldn't keep appearing and vanishing so
suddenly; you make one quite giddy!"

"All right," said the Cat; and this time it vanished quite
slowly, beginning with the end of the tail, and ending
with the grin, which remained some time after the rest
of it had gone.

"Well! I've often seen a cat without a grin," thought Alice;
"but a grin without a cat! It's the most curious thing I ever
saw in all my life!"


-- Lewis Carroll

Cheshire Cat

"Lo, Like a Cheshire cat our court will grin."
-- Peter Pindar, 1795


June 11, 2006

Reminiscent of the Cheshire Cat in Alice in Wonderland, Duke defense spinners magically appear in the media to smile enigmatically, roll their eyes, and dispatch some bit of bizarre, meaningless wisdom. Their appearances are brief -- both literally and legally speaking -- and then they vanish from view.

Lewis Carroll's Cat was inconsistent and his appearances had no rhyme or reason. Duke's lacrosse lawyers seem to show up regularly every Friday, and their purpose is perfectly clear. The gang of attack attorneys aim to destroy the State's witnesses in the press, hoping to get the entire matter dropped.

They're gone now, but the lacrosse attorneys appeared on Friday and left the jury pool with enough information to contaminate the entire cable news Wonderland for a week.


1. Quoting from the accuser's medical report, a defense motion indicates that the nurse who examined the woman's pelvic region only noted "diffuse swelling of the vaginal walls." Accompanying police documents state that the accuser had engaged in sexual activity with 3 - 5 men in the days prior to the lacrosse party.

2. Defense documents attack the accuser's credibility, pointing out that early on, she reported different things to different people. She told one doctor she'd had no alcohol or drugs, according to one defense motion, but told others she had, in fact been drinking, and had taken the muscle relaxant, Flexeril.

3. Kim Roberts' statement is at odds with the complainant's version in several areas. Roberts told police that the accuser, who was using the name "Precious," was never out of her sight except for perhaps five minutes.

PDF file -- Defense Documents released June 8, 2006







Nifong
"I think what I have learned, basically, is that if you cooperate with the
media, out of a sense of duty to public truth, you make yourself a victim."

-- Durham district attorney and victim, Mike Nifong



The Blue Devils' Advocates

May 27, 2006

Mike Nifong has been hit hard in the media. He's been repeatedly kicked by a team of lacrosse defense attorneys who daily leak bad news to the press about the prosecutor's case. (The fake fingernails had already fallen off; the photo line-up was fixed; the DNA came from a boyfriend; the accuser couldn't keep her story straight.)

Of course the cluster of lacrosse lawyers take every opportunity to strangle Nifong with the unfortunate phrases he used during his March media blitz. ("Duke Daddies" . . . "Bunch of Hooligans")

Mr. Nifong has been left gasping for air time, but having been warned not to give any more rape demonstations on cable TV, the prosecutor rarely tries to defend himself. When Nifong occasionally consents to comment about pressing on with the case, his constant refrain is the medical report. "My conviction that a sexual assault actually took place," he repeats, "is based on the examination that was done at Duke hospital."

Attorneys for jersey numbers 6, 13, 45, and the rest of the 40 Blue Devils have now moved in on Nifong's last remaining defense.



Herald-Sun, May 23

. . . Three defense sources, who asked not to be identified, said a forensic examination of the alleged victim found no tearing, bleeding or other injury associated with a sexual assault. Instead, the exam detected only swelling in the accuser's vagina and tenderness in her breasts and lower right body, the sources said.

Citing nearly 1,300 pages of documents given them last week by the prosecution, defense sources also said the woman told police she had sex with three men around the time of the alleged rape . . . The men were identified as her boyfriend and two drivers for the escort service for which she worked.

The defense sources also said Tuesday that, according to the records Nifong handed over last week, the woman at one point said that a second dancer also was in the bathroom where the incident allegedly occurred. But the sources said that when asked about this, the second dancer replied, "That's a crock."

In other new information, the accuser told police her alleged attackers did not use condoms, the defense sources said.



NBC-17, May 22

"No such toxicology report, if it exists, was provided to the defense," wrote attorneys Kirk Osborn and Ernest Conner.

Seligmann's attorneys want a judge to order prosecutors to provide any reports "generated from blood, urine or other biological samples" collected from the accuser. In the motion, they cited a story published in Newsweek earlier this month that said District Attorney Mike Nifong "hinted" such tests would reveal the presence of a date-rape drug.

"It is clear from the discovery provided that discovery in this matter is nowhere near complete," the motion states.



News-Observer, May 26

Lawyers representing Collin Finnerty, 19, of Garden City, N.Y., say they found no document that contains the woman's description of the three men who she says raped her at a March 13 lacrosse team party. On April 4, the woman identified three men during a photographic lineup, but the lawyers are looking for descriptions the woman gave to police without the use of photographs.


WRAL, May 26

Evansí attorneys say there was a second photo lineup done just eight days after the woman says she was raped. In that lineup, attorneys say Evans was not chosen at all.

The motions also talk about information from the first officer to see the dancer. The motions say the officer had to use an ammonia capsule to rouse the unconscious woman. The police report also says the alleged victim first reported that she was groped but not raped, but later changed her story and was taken to the hospital.






"Outcry witnesses" are the first persons spoken to following an alleged crime.





Officer's Account

News-Observer
May 27, 2006



. . .Lawyers attached a narrative of when police met the accuser, written April 9 by Sgt. J.C. Shelton.


Shelton arrived at the Kroger store on Hillsborough Road at 1:25 a.m. March 14, according to the narrative. The accuser was unconscious in the passenger seat of the car driven by the second dancer at the party.

"She was wearing a see-through red outfit, with no undergarments and one white high heel shoe," Shelton wrote.

Shelton tried using smelling salts when the woman didn't respond to him, the report says. When he tried to pull her from the car, she held onto the emergency brake. Shelton said he had to pressure her arm to get her out of the car, and she collapsed on the parking lot.

Not knowing her name or address, Shelton had two officers take the woman to Durham Access, a county-run facility for detoxification. Shelton wrote that a colleague called him later, saying that the woman had reported being raped at the party. Shelton told the officer to take her to Duke Hospital.

The accuser was cooperative at the hospital, Shelton wrote. She said she worked as a stripper and put on a show at 610 N. Buchanan with "Nikki," another dancer. The accuser said that when the two left and got in the other dancer's car, someone from the party came out and asked them to return, Shelton wrote. Nikki wanted to go back into the house, Shelton wrote, but the accuser didn't, and the two argued.

"She said at that point some of the guys from the party pulled her from the vehicle and groped her," Shelton wrote. "She told me no one forced her to have sex."

Shelton called his watch commander to report the woman had retracted her rape allegation. A few minutes later, Shelton wrote, he learned that she had told the examining doctor that she had been raped.

"I returned to the room where she was and asked her if she had or had not been raped," Shelton wrote. "She told me she did not want to talk to me anymore and then started crying and saying something about them dragging her into the bathroom."









Action in the Master Bedroom

May 21, 2006

Midway through the police photo presentation, the accuser makes a mistake about the master bedroom. The misstatement is caught by the interviewer and quickly corrected.

(IMAGE 26)
Victim: He was in the living room.
Sgt: He was in the living room? What was he doing there?
Victim: Sitting down.
Sgt: Do you recognize him? I'm sorry; you said he was in the living room.
Victim: I meant the master bedroom.
Sgt: Master bedroom. Ok.

Reportedly, defense digital photographs show the accuser -- just after midnight -- dancing in the living room, or "main room." She is surrounded by dozens of lacrosse players holding beers and watching the show. But the interviewer's corrective prompt indicates that at some point -- likely after being coaxed back into the house -- a second, smaller grouping of men gathered in the master bedroom for a different private performance.

A check of the interview indeed finds seven men identified as being in the bedroom. It's not clear if the defendants were also in that group, if so, that makes ten.

(IMAGE 11)
Sgt: Where was he?
Victim: In the master bedroom.
Sgt: Was that where you described earlier with the big TV screen, where you danced?
Victim: Yes.

(IMAGE 13)
Sgt: How do you recognize him?
Victim: He was in the master bedroom.
Sgt: What kinds of things was he doing?
Victim: Just drinking.

(#26)

(IMAGE 34)
Victim: He was in the master bedroom.
Sgt: What was he doing?
Victim: Sitting on the couch watching television.
(IMAGE 35 is shown)
Victim: The guy before this one. He made the comment about the broomstick.
Sgt: Number 34 was the gentleman who made the broomstick comment?
Victim: Um hum.
Sgt: What was the comment about?
Victim: He said um, he was going to stick broomsticks up our asses.
Sgt: Did he do anything else?
Victim: No.
Sgt: Was he holding anything when he said that? And Number 35 the one you just looked at. Did you recognize him?
Victim: No.

(IMAGE 37)
Victim: He was in the master bedroom.
Sgt: What was he doing there?
Victim: Just yelling and screaming.
Sgt: Do you remember what he was screaming?
Victim: Just Yeah! and Whooo!

(IMAGE 38)
Victim: He was in the master bedroom.
Sgt: What was he doing there?
Victim: Yeah, let's see some action!
Sgt: He was the one saying let's see some action?
Victim: Yes.

Although the accuser had already been paid $400, this hastily arranged second show may have been an extra charge which would explain the later arguments over pricing. Also, a second show in a private bedroom would explain how 40 people lost track of the accuser's whereabouts.

If in fact the accuser performed two shows at the lacrosse party -- 12:00 and 12:15 -- and was gone by 12:45, the timeline of a 30 minute gang rape cannot be reconciled. But it's possible what happened in that master bedroom led into what the accuser says happened in the bathroom.








LOSING IT
Nifong

May 20, 2006

DA Mike Nifong lost it at the Durham courthouse on Monday, May 15. In a hallway on the sixth floor, Nifong exploded in anger. During the prosecutor's profanity-laced tirade, he told one of Dave Evans' attorneys that he was angry about a defense news conference headed by Joe Cheshire who accused the DA's office of leaking information to the press.

Cheshire later commented to reporters about the bitterness and acrimony on both sides. "After Mr. Nifong made all his statements and we heard there were going to be indictments, we called over and tried to talk to him, and he refused to talk to us. He's refused to look at the exculpatory evidence, and when there is someone who will simply not act professionally and discuss things with you in a professional way, how else do you do things?" Cheshire said.

During a May 18 hearing for Reade Seligmann, the DA announced he intended to postpone a trial until the spring of 2007 and try all three players together.

"We want a trial as fast as we can," responded Seligmann's attorney Kirk Osborn. "This young kid wants to go to school in the fall, and he can't until this is resolved." Superior Court Judge Ronald L. Stephens announced that the case "is not going to jump ahead of the line and be handled any differently."

During the brief hearing, attorneys also argued about turning over items of evidence, including the accuser's cell phone. The phone was found outside near the lacrosse team party house and is currently in police custody. Nifong claimed he'd yet to examine records from the accuser's cell phone, service to which was apparently cancelled the day after the lacrosse party.

Having started the week by giving defense attorneys a foul-mouthed tongue lashing, Nifong ended it by giving them 1,278 pages of evidence, two videotapes and a compact disc containing photographs.

Cheshire


No word if any of those photos include a picture of Dave Evans wearing a fake moustache.







Bob Bennett
A team of lacrosse parents, calling themselves the
"Committee for Fairness to Duke Families," hired
Washington attorney Bob Bennett, once the personal
lawyer to President Clinton, to lead a PR effort in
defense of the team.




Captain Courageous



Evans
Nifong Nabs #6

May 15, 2006

A grand jury handed down the indictment of 23-year-old David Evans. Evans, lacrosse team co-captain from Bethesda, Md., has been charged with first-degree rape, first-degree sexual offense and first-degree kidnapping.

Moments before being booked at the Durham county jail, Evans looked confident as he gave a remarkable speech protesting his complete innocence.


I want to thank you all for letting me speak to you today. My name is Dave Evans and I'm captain of the Duke University lacrosse team. I have to say that I'm very relieved to be the person who can come out and speak on behalf of my family and my team and let you know how we feel.

First I want to say that I am absolutely innocent of all the charges that have been brought against me today -- that Reade Seligmann and Collin Finnerty are innocent of all the charges brought against them. These allegations are lies. Fabricated. . . fabricated -- and they will be proven wrong.

If I can go back to two months ago when the police first came to my home -- I fully cooperated and have continued to try to cooperate with them. When they entered in and started to read the search warrant, my roommates and I helped them find evidence for almost and hour, and told them that if they had any questions we would gladly answer them to show that nothing happened that night.

After that, I went down to the police station and gave an un-counseled statement because I knew that I had done nothing wrong, and did not feel that I needed an attorney. After going through photos of my teammates and identifying who was there, I then submitted -- perfectly willingly -- DNA samples to the police. I then turned over my e-mail account, my A.I.M. account, and any kind of information that they could have to show that I had not communicated in any way that anything happened -- because it DID NOT happen.

After that, I asked to take a polygraph, which was refused by the Durham Police Department. Over the past several weeks, I've repeatedly, through my lawyers, tried to -- attempt -- tried to contact the district attorney. All of my attempts have been denied. I've tried to . . . provide him with exculpatory evidence showing that this COULD not have happened. Those attempts have been denied.

And, as a result of his apparent lack of interest in my story -- the true story -- and any evidence proving that my story is correct, I asked my lawyer to give me a polygraph. I took that polygraph -- and it was administered by a former F.B.I., top, poly--grapher with over 28 years of experience, he's done several hundreds of sexual cases -- and I passed it absolutely. And I passed that polygraph for the same reason that I will be acquitted of all these charges . . . because I have done nothing wrong, and I am telling the truth, and I have told the truth from day one.

I'd like to say 'thank you' to my friends and family, my coach, and members of the community who've stood by us through everything -- from the initial weeks to now. Their support has given me the strength to come through this. But the thing that gives me the most strength is knowing that I have the truth behind me -- and it will not phase me.

If I can close -- I've always taken pride in my name. I take pride in my name today, and I'll gladly stand up to anything that comes against me. I've never had my character questioned before. Anyone who's met me knows that this couldn't happen. And I appreciate your support.

As for my teammates, I love you all. I've never. . . The honor of being voted captain of all of you, the forty-six best guys you could ever meet, has been the greatest honor of my life.

If I can clear things up and say this one more time: I am innocent. Reade Seligmann is innocent. Collin Finnerty is innocent. Every member of the Duke University lacrosse team is innocent. You have all been told some fantastic lies, and I look forward to watching them unravel in the weeks to come, as they already have in weeks past -- and the truth will come out. Thank you for your time.




taxi


Associated Press
Tuesday 5/16/2006

A judge found a Duke University lacrosse team captain not guilty of violating the city's noise ordinance on Tuesday, saying authorities "could make better use" of the court's time than by bringing such minor misdemeanors to trial.

The charge against Dan Flannery stemmed from a party Jan. 10, when a neighbor called police after midnight to complain that she heard what sounded like a drum beat coming from a nearby house. Two police officers testified they found an ongoing party with loud music they could hear two houses away. Both Flannery and one of his roommates, David Evans, were at the house and appeared to be slightly intoxicated, they said. Both men were cited with noise violations.

captains
co-captains Matt Zash (left)
and Dan Flannery







Dancing Around the Truth

May 14, 2006

The transcript of the April 4 police PowerPoint photo session is a remarkable document for many reasons.

DA Nifong is right to say the accuser's I.D. alone is enough to get the case before a jury. Shown a photo of every member on the lacrosse team, the accuser confidently reports the actions of each man who assaulted her or stood out in any way. The witness seems cold and vaguely angry throughout, then becomes oddly, emotionally pained by the photo of Finnerty.

The accuser's tearful comment to the News Observer about why she choose to report a rape may be revealing about what really happened -- considering the extreme violence described in the search warrant, which reads: "The victim stated she was hit, kicked and strangled during the assault."

News Observer
April 16, 2006


As she stepped off the screened-in porch, a gym bag slung over one shoulder, she was met by a reporter. Upon learning that reports of her allegations had surfaced in the newspaper, she put a hand over her mouth and gasped. Tears welled in her eyes.

She reported the incident, she said, because many men don't believe forcing a woman to have sex is a "big deal."


Would "many men" believe the prolonged, savage, group attack described wasn't a big deal? Would "many men" even consider kicking and strangling to be sex at all?

The accuser's actual story emerges as not so much a kicking, punching attack, but more of a willing agreement that descended into a nightmarish "date rape" situation. The episode recounted seems to be a somewhat orderly event, with each man in turn, holding the woman down, then performing isolated sexual acts.

It wasn't perhaps a brutal, bloody, frantic attack, but rather, an unhurried, forced sex session, periodically interrupted by preparations -- such as the changing of condoms. Thus the accuser's feeling that the scene went on and on -- for half an hour. Immediately afterward, maybe left alone to get dressed, the men added insult to their injury as they rifled through the escort's purse, bartering about payment and slipping bills back under the door.

I'm not saying that's what happened -- I'm saying that would explain the evidence and lack of it. It would also explain the accuser's failure to immediately tell Kim Roberts or police about a gang rape, since she may have at first felt she was partially to blame.

The next day, having dealt with police officers and medical people during previous incidents, the accuser may have purposely given different versions of her story to different people as she grappled to position herself in the coming family crisis.




From the April 4 Photo Session
IMAGE 4

Victim: "He looked like [REDACTED] but I'm not sure."
Sgt: "Who is [REDACTED]?"
Victim: "One of the guys that assaulted me."

IMAGE 5

Victim: "He looks like one of the guys that assaulted me sort (of)."
Sgt: "Ok, um, how sure of it are you on this image?"
Victim: "He looks just like him without the mustache."
Sgt: "Ok, so the person had a mustache?"
Victim: "Yes."
Sgt: "Ok so percentage wise, what is the likelihood that this is one of the gentlemen who assaulted you?"
Victim: "About 90%."

IMAGE 7 -- Seligmann

Victim: "He looks like one of the guys that assaulted me"
Sgt: "How sure of that are you?"
Victim: "100%."

IMAGE 17

Victim: "He is the one that gave me $400."

IMAGE 34

"He made the comment about the broomstick."

IMAGE 40 -- Finnerty

Victim: "He put his penis in my anus and my vagina." (The victim's eyes were pooling with tears.)
Sgt: "Was he the first or second one to do that?"
Victim: "The second one."
Sgt: "Is he the one that strangled you or not?"
Victim: "No."




Jennifer Willbanks
Runaway Bride, Jennifer Wilbanks, under cover after lying
to the police about being assaulted by "Hispanic" kidnappers.

tested
Duke lacrosse players respond March 23 to an
order from Durham police to go to the department's
Forensic Services Unit to give DNA samples.




Second DNA Results Test Accuser's Story

May 12, 2006

DA Nifong's second round of DNA testing came back with the same result as the first: no conclusive match to any person on the Duke lacrosse team.

At a news conference, defense attorney, Joseph Cheshire, revealed the tests DID show genetic material from a "single male source" was found on a vaginal swab taken from the accuser -- but that the DNA did not match any of the players.

"In other words, it appears this woman had sex with a male," said Cheshire. "It also appears with certainty it wasn't a Duke lacrosse player." The donor of the semen is named in the report and is the alleged victim's "boyfriend" according to her mother.

Testing also found some genetic material from several people on a plastic fingernail found in a bathroom trash can. Cheshire said some of that material had the "same characteristics" as some of the players' DNA, but not Finnerty or Seligmann.






Advanced Calculus

May 8, 2006

If Michael B. Nifong used the lacrosse team rape allegations as part of a political calculation to grab headlines -- he stumbled upon a unique algebraic equation that should be closely examined by every political scientist.

Like the Sorcerer's Apprentice who got what he wished for -- squared -- DA Nifong's initial press interviews about the case magically multiplied into a mountain of media.

Not since word that a pregnant woman named Laci Peterson was missing has the media microscope focused so intently on one news item.

One day before the election, defense lawyers filed a motion requesting that Nifong be removed from the case because, they said, he was trying to "bolster his election chances while prejudicing the case against the defendant." Still, Nifong won 45 percent of the vote in the May 2nd Democratic primary, ahead of Freda Black with 42 percent and Keith Bishop with 13 percent. The race was not as close as the numbers might appear to indicate.

There's no doubt the vote was a referendum on Nifong and the racially charged Duke case. Durham's choice could not have been made more black and white. Both the female challenger -- who's name is Black -- and the male challenger -- who IS Black -- criticized Nifong's premature public statements and handling of the case. Together, his opponents barely took half of the votes.

Having won over 40 percent, and facing no Republican challenger -- Nifong secured his position as district attorney in Durham with a solid vote of confidence from White and Black voters.

Unable to resist delighting in his miraculous accomplishment, DA Nifong took to the air. Appearing on several local and national TV shows, the prosecutor broke through his wall of silence to posture and position himself in front of the cameras.



"The case will still go forward. The election and the case are totally different things."

"I was making decisions based on what the case presented at the time."

"I'm satisfied with the decisions that I've made. I'm still satisfied with them."

"I'm confident a sexual assault took place in that house. If I didn't believe her, then I would not be basing any of my decisions on what she said."

"He's saying that according to his timeline the crime couldn't have happened. And who says that's my timeline?"

"My guess is that there are many questions that many people are asking that they would not be asking if they saw the [DNA] results. By leaking things out like this, they can keep the case in the headlines -- see all these trucks that are still around here waiting for something to happen -- and kind of frame the case their own way. And say things like, 'according to my timeline' -- which of course, they don't know what my timeline is."









They All Look Alike

We've seen number 45 -- Reade Seligmann. Now meet number 44 -- Tony McDevitt. He was at the infamous March 13 party, and he's a dead ringer for 45.

45 and 44
#45 -- Reade Seligmann 6'1" 215 lbs. #45 -- Tony McDevitt 6'0" 205 lbs.





BLACK WOMAN WHITE CAR

CNN has added yet more confounding facts to this story. Assuming the police records are correct -- the cabbie's return trip observations take place AFTER Kim's 12:53 9-1-1 call, and AFTER the police went to the house and stayed for 11 minutes -- finding no one.

Mostafa said he got another call to pick up people at the North Buchanan address later in the morning of March 14, about 1:07 a.m.

He said he saw about 20 people on the lawn of the house, "yelling, talking back" to each other, including one black woman who he said didn't appear to be injured.

The woman, who seemed to be arguing with the young men, crossed in front of his taxi and got into an "old, white car," Mostafa said. He couldn't see if anyone else was in the car, he said.

"I heard her talking back to the guys" in what was apparently not a friendly conversation, he said.

The woman began to drive away in her car, but suddenly stopped and backed up, almost hitting his taxi, Mostafa said.

Four men got into his cab, and they appeared to be drunk, Mostafa said.

One of them said, "She's just a stripper," Mostafa said.

It seems impossible that Kim and the accuser remained any where near that house after 12:53. Still -- the cabbie saw the Black woman get into an old white car, when we know Kim was driving a black or very dark navy blue Honda. The cabbie wasn't drunk -- how could he mistake an old white car for Kim's newer black car?

Maybe the taxi driver is just wrong, but the search warrant clearly states that during the 12:55 check of the house, no one answered the door but parked in front of the house was a GREEN HONDA. That may well have been Kim's Honda.

If so, where was Kim?




Wheel of Fortune
taxi
Kim Spins Her 15 Minutes of Shame

April 23, 2006

Like the young woman in the fairy tale, Rumpelstiltskin, who is impossibly expected to use a spinning wheel to spin straw into gold, Kim Roberts is frantically trying to turn her trash into cash. Hoping to weave a role in this multimedia fable that works to her advantage, Kim sent a desperate e-mail to the spin-wizards at 5W Public Relations.

Sent: Wednesday, April 19, 2006 2:21 PM
To: Ronn Torossian
Subject: duke lacrosse scandal


Hi!

My name is Kim and I am involved in the Duke Lacrosse scandal.
Although I am no celebrity and just an average citizen, I've found myself
in the center of one of the biggest stories in the country. I'm worried about
letting this opportunity pass me by without making the best of it and was
wondering if you had any advice as to how to spin this to my advantage.
I am determined not to let any negative publicity about my life overtake me.
I'm so confused as to who to talk to for relevant advice and I hope that you
can return my e-mail. If you cannot help, do you know of any names and
numbers I can call?

Thanks for your time,
The Second Dancer


Mr. Nifong can't be happy with his star-struck witness. The less Kim says to the press -- the better. What she spins, can and will be spun against her in a court of law. For a prosecutor, silence is golden.

From an NBC (WNCN-TV) NEWS Article, APRIL 21, 2006:


Roberts, 31, was arrested on March 22 -- eight days after the party -- on a probation violation from a 2001 conviction for embezzling $25,000 from a photofinishing company in Durham where she was a payroll specialist, according to documents obtained by the AP. On Monday, the same day a grand jury indicted lacrosse players Reade Seligmann and Collin Finnerty, a judge agreed to a change so that Roberts would no longer have to pay a 15 percent fee to a bonding agent. District Attorney Mike Nifong signed a document saying he would not oppose the change.

"It seems she is receiving very favorable financial treatment for what she is now saying," said attorney Bill Thomas, who represents one of the uncharged players. "We believe . . . her story has been motivated by her own self-interest."

It's fascinating that Kim went to a P.R. firm to learn what every stripper knows: the less you show the more they want to see.




I AM KIM ROBERTS

"If I could see the future and would have known what that night would've brought, I would have paid more attention. I wish I had paid more attention to everything that happened around me."

"the little skinny one . . . I was looking him right in the eyes."

"I can't imagine that a woman would do that to herself if she didn't feel like it was worth doing it. And the only reason it would be worth doing it -- is if she was raped. So, I have no reason to believe she was lying."

"I was not in the bathroom when it happened, so I can't say a rape occurred -- and I never will."

"In all honesty, I think they're guilty. And I can't say which ones are guilty ... but somebody did something besides underage drinking. That's my honest-to-God impression."

"They ripped themselves off when they started hollering about a broomstick."

"I think that it's quite possible that something really terrible had happened to her."

"Why shouldn't I profit from it? I didn't ask to be in this position. . . I would like to feed my daughter."

"Don't forget that they called ME a damn n--- . She was passed out in the car. She doesn't know what she was called. I was called that. I can never forget that."

"If they're innocent, they will not go to jail. But if the truth is on their side, why are they supporting it with so many lies?"

"If the boys are innocent, sorry fellas. Sorry you had to go through this."





WHERE WAS KIM?

It's becoming increasingly clear that the exact whereabouts of the second dancer, "Kim" -- between midnight and 12:30 AM -- will be a critical issue. The accuser alleges she was attacked in the bathroom for thirty minutes. Presumably the other lacrosse players sat in the next room and did nothing. Where was Kim and what was she doing? Did Kim continue to dance and perform for the men alone? Probably not. Did she leave the house and sit in her car for a half-hour? Not likely. It seems possible Kim left the house and -- for whatever reason -- drove away from the area for a while, and later drove back and got the accuser in her car.



taxi
TIMED OUT

Moez Mostafa, the cabbie, reports he got a second call for the lacrosse house -- at around 1:07 AM on March 14. He says he sensed trouble and witnessed a shouting match with several students. Maybe Mostafa's got one of those notoriously broken meters in his cab. His timing seems off by 10 minutes.

Dancer Kim's first 9-1-1 call was made at 12:53 and the Durham PD said they responded at 12:55 and there was no one at the house. They said they stayed for 11 minutes looking all around and into the house and in the alley. How is it that Mostafa witnessed the yard filled with several lacrosse players and a light-skinned black woman yelling and screaming?



Mostafa

Fare and Balanced

April 20, 2006

No doubt DA Nifong wishes Rita Crosby worked for him instead of MSNBC NEWS. Just days after the very public arrests of two 20-year-old Duke lacrosse players, an alibi witness went on television to establish that one of those men could not have been at the scene during the time of the alleged gang rape.

In an interview, taxi driver Moez Mostafa said his phone records show he got a call from Reade Seligmann's cell phone at 12:14 AM on March 14 and picked him up at 12:19 near the party house. Seligmann was with an as-of-yet unnamed friend.

"They are normal, I didn't see anything wrong with them," Mostafa said. "I didn't pay attention because nothing looked suspicious at all. They just wanted to get some food and take a ride home." He said he took them to an ATM, a drive-through restaurant and dropped them off at their dorm. "They were just joking and laughing inside my car and everything just fine," Mostafa reported.

The cabbie also said he returned to the house later to pick up another customer. He said he remembered that person "said in a loud voice, 'She's just a stripper.'"

Mostafa offered: "When I look back, he look like he mad at the stripper. Or the stripper, she going to call the police and, 'she just a stripper' . . . It look to me like somebody get hurt. But what kind of harm . . . I have no idea."

After his whirlwind media tour, Nifong has gone into hiding. He obviously never spoke with Seligmann's cabbie, or with anyone at the Mexican restaurant-bar ("Cosmic Cantina" on Perry Street?) where Finnerty says he was eating that night.

Cosmic Cantina



The prosecution's best case at this point is that the lacrosse team -- AS A TEAM -- made a concerted effort to conceal what they knew was a horrendous crime. This would explain away most of the defense evidence.

1. They purposely gave false names and team numbers to the dancers and the escort service in order to hide the PLANNED ATTACK.

2. They slipped a "date rape" drug to the one dancer they CHOOSE to attack and rape.

3. They got the two dancers in two different places in the house.

4. They immediately set about destroying evidence of their crime and creating evidence of innocence. They purposely posed pictures with time-stamps. They purposely called for cabs and created reasons to get stamped receipts.

5. They lied about exactly who was and who wasn't at the party -- purposely leaving Seligmann and Finnerty off the list. (Photos prove Seligmann was there. Finnerty would oddly have been one of the very few lacrosse players not in attendance.)

6. They immediately agreed upon a code of silence and fled the scene.



It's a rather defensive position to be in -- but it would satisfy a judge that the case should continue to trial.



THIRTY MINUTES

The real problem for the DA is that the accuser claims she was strangled and sexually attacked for 30 minutes. By all accounts, the accuser arrived at the house at 11:45 and left with the other dancer around 12:45. When would such an attack have occurred? Did the other lacrosse players sit in the next room during that half hour -- and do nothing to stop it? The timeline of events are critical.

Although Nifong has declined to state the actual time the accuser says she was gang raped, the News-Observer interviewed the accuser -- and they reported the following on March 25, 2006:


"This was the first time she had been hired to dance provocatively for a group, she said. There was no security to protect her, and as the men became aggressive, the two women started to leave. After some of the men apologized for the behavior, the women went back inside, according to police. That's when the woman was pulled into a bathroom and raped and sodomized, police said."





WHY LIE?


"My father came to see me in the hospital.
I knew if I didn't report it that he would have that hurt forever,
knowing that someone hurt his baby and got away with it."
-- interview with accuser, March 25, 2006

defense photo

From the warrant to search Duke Dorm rooms
April 18, 2006

The victim arrived at the residence and joined the other female dancer around 11:30 PM 3-13-2006. The victim reported that they began to perform their routine inside of the residence. After a few minutes the males watching them began to get excited and aggressive. One male stated to the women, "I'm gonna shove this up you" holding a broomstick up in the air so they could see it.

The victim and her fellow dancer decided to leave because they were concerned for their safety. After the two women exited the residence and got into a vehicle they were approached by one of the suspects. He apologized and requested they go back inside and continue to dance. Shortly after going back into the dwelling the two women were separated.

Two males, Adam and Matt pulled the victim into the bathroom. Someone closed the door to the bathroom where she was and said, "sweetheart you can't leave." The victim stated she tried to leave but the three males (Adam, Brett and Matt) forcefully held her legs and arms and sexually assaulted her anally, vaginally and orally. The victim stated she was hit, kicked and strangled during the assault. As she attempted to defend herself she was overpowered. The victim reported she was sexually assaulted for an approximate 30 minute time period by the three males.

During a search warrant on 610 North Buchanan on 3-16-2006, the victim's four red polished fingernails were recovered inside the residence consistent to her version of the attack. She claims she was clawing at one of the suspect's arms in an attempt to breathe while being strangled. During that time the nails broke off. The victim's make-up bag, cell phone and identification were also located inside the residence during the search warrant. Finally a pile of twenty dollar bills were recovered inside the residence totaling $160.00 consistent with the victim claiming $400.00 cash in all twenty dollar bills was taken from her purse immediately after the rape.

defense photo




The Second Dancer


It seems to me that the "second" dancer was actually the first one to the party. It's not clear whether the two even knew each other, but it sounds like they were strangers and that the second dancer (self identified as only "Kim") had been at the house for 30 minutes before the accuser arrived.

Kim has now gone on the record. "I think that it's quite possible that something really terrible had happened to her," she told reporters. "I have no reason to believe she was lying."

Kim says she has no reason to think the accuser is lying, and yet she herself lied several times -- that night. She had reasons to lie, and they were similar to reasons the accuser has cited -- for one thing, not wanting people to find out she's a stripper.

Although Kim told reporters the accuser was "talkative and friendly and smiling" and that the two "talked for several minutes and she was fine," she can't testify that a total stranger was or was not behaving normally. The implication that the accuser was given a "date rape" drug was never mentioned by Kim at the time.

If a 30-minute gang rape occurred during the lacrosse party, it had to have happened between midnight and 12:30.

Kim placed herself on the record twice that night, after the time of the alleged incident.

Kim's 9-1-1 calls happened at around 12:53 AM and 1:22 AM on March 14. "They didn't harm me in any way" she declares in the first call, while apparently still sitting in her car at or near the house. During the second call, she seems to have tried to distance herself from the other dancer, who won't leave the car.

If a gang rape had occurred, it was not obvious to Kim. She was trying to get rid of the accuser at that point.

Kim now has said she wishes she had paid closer attention to what happened that evening, but based on those phone calls, she was quite attentive to what was happening -- and reported it to authorities.

Kim's timeline is difficult to put together, since she lied to authorities at various times that night. Still, here's what it looks like:



11:15 Kim arrives at the party in her Honda Accord. Expecting 10 or 15 men, she is concerned and alerted by an audience of 43 college boys.

11:45 The accuser is dropped off at the house by an as-of-yet unknown person.

The women are offered an alcoholic drink.

12:00 Kim and the accuser begin dancing.

12:03 Both women stop dancing. Racial slurs and/ or crude remarks about a broom sex toy are made. Kim is upset and slaps one of the lacrosse players.

At some point -- likely not long past 12:03 -- the two dancers are paid and they exit the house. Presumably the accuser plans to catch a ride with Kim.

12:30 Kim is in her car still parked near the house. The accuser has gone back to the house and is falling around on the steps.

12:41 The accuser is helped into Kim's car. They drive away from the house.

12:53 Kim tells 9-1-1 that her and a friend were called names while "walking" past 610 North Buchanan Blvd.

12:55 Police arrive at the house -- the team has dispersed.

1:22 Kim reports a stranger given a ride to the KROGER store who now WON'T leave her car.

1:30 Police officer reports the accuser is passed out. Kim presumably leaves the store parking lot as the accuser is taken away by the police.

2:31 A police dispatch log indicates the accuser showed up at the Duke Hospital emergency room






Seligmann, Finnerty arrested

Arrested Development

April 18, 2006

Duke University lacrosse players Reade Seligmann and Collin Finnerty were charged with first degree forcible rape, first degree sexual offense and kidnapping.

Seligmann Finnerty
Reade Seligmann   Collin Finnerty

Seligmann is a 6-foot-1 sophomore from Essex Fells, N.J. Finnerty is a 6-foot-3 sophomore from Garden City, N.Y. Both students are 20-years-old. The next scheduled court appearance for the players is May 15.

Kirk Osborn, Seligmann's attorney, said, "We're looking forward to showing that he is absolutely innocent as soon as we can." Mr. Osborn would not comment on whether his client was at the party. William J. Cotter, the lawyer representing Finnerty, said, "The grand jury, as you know, has indicted him. They hear one side of the story. They almost always indict. The next jury will hear the entire story, which includes our evidence. We're confident that these young men will be found to be innocent."

Embattled DA, Mike Nifong is promising to make at least one more arrest. "It had been my hope to charge all three of the assailants at the same time, but the evidence available to me at this moment does not permit that," Nifong said. "Investigation into the identity of the third assailant will continue in the hope that he can also be identified with certainty."

Mike Nifong




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