Duke Case: Is Ms. Mangum Rewriting Her Story Herself?
Investigator Linwood Wilson's report on his December 21, 2006 with false accuser Crystal Gail Mangum is fascinating The day after the interview, the "white Knight" championing knavery in the name of atoning for the evils of slavery, Durham County, North Carolina District Attorney Michael D. Nifong, dismissed the rape charges against Reade Seligmann, Collin Finnerty and David Evans (aka the Duke Three), but not the kidnapping and sexual assault charges.
The apparent basis for dropping the rape charges was Ms. Mangum's recent uncertainty about what allegedly penetrated her vaginally in a bathrom at a house in which the 2005-2006 Duke University Men's Lacrosse Team was held last March.
Excerpt for Wilson report:
"12. Are you certain that they used their penis to rape you?
Answer: I can't say 100% that it was a penis that was used because I couldn't see it. They had me bent over and my face pushed down to the floor so I couldn't see what they were using but I believe it was their penis. It felt like a penis, but it was a sharp pain. I couldn't say 100% that I saw them use their penis but it was certainly something."
Duke Three supporters greeted the news of the rape charge dismissals joyously, but North Carolina Central University Law Professor Irving Joyner (monitor of the Duke case for the North Carolina NAACP and author of a treatise on North Carolina criminal procedure law) viewed it as an attempt to strengthen the case.
Excerpt from WRAL December 28, 2006 post:
"Case Might Be Stronger, Law Professor Says
"Some experts have said that Nifong's dismissal of the rape charges could actually make the prosecution's case stronger.
"'Now, they don't have to establish that there was penetration committed against the accuser,' said N.C. Central University law professor Irving Joyner.
"'In addition to that, now they don't have to deal with the DNA or the lack of DNA evidence,' Joyner added. 'And with the rape shield statute, it's unlikely that information will even come before the jury to consider.'"
North Carolina journalist and television commentator Cash Michaels reported on December 23, 2006 that Professor Joyner said that "dropping the weakest part of the case, namely the rape charges, may strengthen the case because during a trial, it will keep all reference to the lack of DNA evidence out of testimony."
It will NOT keep out of the trial "all reference to the lack of DNA evidence" (since the lack of DNA evidence is relevant to what Ms. Mangum claimed happened during the kidnapping/rape/sexual assault and the sexual assault charges remain. Thus, the defense moved to make Dr. Brian Meehan, the director of DNA Security, the private laboratory chosen by Mr. Nifong to do further DNA testing when the state laboratory's DNA testing did not implicate any white member of the 2005-2006 Duke University Men's Lacrosse Team and the man with whom Mr. Nifong conspired (unsuccessfully) to conceal DNA test results that contradicted five times Ms. Mangum's claim that she had not had sex with anyone for a week before the lacrosse team party last March.
Hero of the Hoax Dr. William Anderson is not a fan of Professor Joyner.
"Irving Joyner has been one of the biggest disgraces in this whole sorry affair. From the start, I can guarantee you that he sniffed out the hoax, yet helped to keep it alive solely for racial politics. More than anyone else, he could have steered the NAACP and others in the right direction, but instead decided to keep an obvious lie alive.
"Other than Michael Nifong, Joyner has been more responsible for this hoax staying alive than anyone else. Of course, now that it is becoming obvious that Nifong has been lying (heck, it was obvious last March), I see Joyner is looking to jump ship, too.
"All he cared about was being on the 'winning' side. Compare him to Prof. Coleman, and you see who has integrity and who does not."
To those who would charge Dr. Anderson with racism, forget about it: his two sons are black and the Professor Coleman he lauded is Duke Law School Professor James Coleman, also black.
What intrigues me most about Investigator Wilson's report of his December 21, 2006 interview with Ms. Mangum are the fact that Ms. Mangum has revised her story, apparently to avoid some of the biggest problems, and the probability that she had help in doing so.
An ethical lawyer would not assist Ms. Mangum in continuing to perpetrate a fraud on the court and a nightmare for persons wrongly and wrongfully indicted and their families and friends.
An unethical lawyer might.
Read closely the December 21, 2006 statement set forth below.
"Crystal Mangum stated that on March 13, 2006 she was at her father's house. At approximately 3:30 PM she received a call from Tammy (Escort Service) saying she had booked Crystal Mangum for a bachelor party at 11:00 PM and that she (Tammy) would have someone call Crystal back later with the directions to the party. Crystal stated that Jarriel Johnson had carried her to her father's house but he wasn't sure he could take her, at 11:00 PM, where the bachelors party was to be. Ms. Mangum stated that Brian Taylor agreed to take her to the bachelors party that night. At approximately 5:30 PM, Melissa called with the address of the bachelors party and directions. She stated the party was at 610 N. Buchanan Blvd., Durham, NC.
"Crystal Mangum stated that she and her father left her father's house about 9:00 PM and her father dropped her of at Brian's house (out by South Pointe) around 9:30 PM. Ms. Mangum showered while at Brian's and she and Brian left around 10:30 PM, and headed to 6:10 N. Buchanan Blvd., Durham, NC. They arrived at 610 N. Buchanan Blvd., Durham around 11:10 PM.
"Crystal Mangum stated that when she arrived at 610 N. Buchanan Blvd. she observed a female in the back yard with a bunch of guys. All the guys and the female (Kim) had cups and were drinking alcoholic beverages. Ms. Mangum stated that she and the other female introduced themselves as 'Precious' (for Crystal Mangum) and 'Nikki' (for Kim Pittman Roberts). They talked about their children briefly and then they go into the house, through the back door, along with the guys. They (Mangum and Kim) go into the bathroom to get ready. Someone knocked on the bathroom and the guy handed 'Nikki' (Kim) both drinks and 'Nikki' gave Mangum her drink. During this time Mangum could hear the guys yelling and talking loudly. Another guy came to the bathroom door and tried to push his way in and 'Nikki' (Kim) said 'you have to calm down, we are getting scared.' Crystal Mangum stated, 'the guys were yelling bad words like "whore" and things like that.'
"Crystal Mangum stated they (Crystal & Kim) went out into the room to dance. When they go into the middle of the room the guys circled around them and this one guy said 'we are going to stick a broomstick up your asses.' They got scared when this was said and they started picking their clothes up off the floor. Crystal Mangum stated she started feeling dizzy at this point and she (Crystal) and 'Nikki' (Kim) ran out to 'Nikki's' (Kim's) car and were getting ready to drive off when 3 guys came to the car. Crystal stated that Dave Evans was one of the 3 guys. Nikki was negotiating with 3 guys. The 3 guys apologized and Crystal and Kim returned to inside the house. As soon as they (Crystal & Kim) got inside the house, the guys started acting crazy again. People were running around screaming. They (Crystal & Kim) were separated by either 'Nikki' (Kim) leaving on her own or the guys taking her (Crystal not sure which just that they were separated). This was at the bathroom in the master bedroom.
"Crystal Mangum stated, "Dave Evan grabbed me by the arm, Tall one, Collin Finnerty) grabbed me around my waist and the other one Reade was holding my legs." There were about 20 guys in the bedroom and some of them started pushing me into the bathroom while the 3 guys were holding me. Dave Evans was holding my arms and said, "Sweatheart you can't leave."
"Crystal Mangum stated she was wearing a white top, red dressy undertop, white skirt and white thongs. Crystal Mangum stated, 'once inside the bathroom, Dave Evans was behind me, Reade Seligmann was in front of me and Finnerty was on the floor under Seligmann. I felt a sharp pain in my vagina and someone said "we're gonna rape or fuck (doesn't remember which) this black bitch.' Crystal Mangum stated that Dave Evans was in the rear and after a few minutes he asked one of the other guys (Seligmann) to get back behind her and Seligmann said he didn't want to because he was getting married. Finnerty then got up and got behind her and Dave Evans got under Finnerty on the floor and Seligmann was still in front of her. Crystal Mangum stated at this point she started feeling sharp pain in her ass and vagina, while Finnerty was behind her. Both Finnerty and Evans were trying to get Seligmann to 'do it' but he kept saying NO. Then Seligmann got behind her, Finnerty got on the floor under her and Evans got in front of her. Dave Evans started jacking his penis and ejaculating on her face and she (Crystal) started spitting. Someone opened the door and handed them towels and they started wiping me off, Dave Evans off and wiping up the floor.
"Crystal Mangum stated, 'When they opened the door with the towels I saw Nikki standing in the doorway. Nikki said "we have to go they want us to leave" and the guys were saying "get that trash out of here" so after I sat there a few minutes I ran outside screaming trying to get away.' Crystal Mangum stated, 'I fell on the ground, they (guys) picked me up, put me in her (Kim's) car and we drove away. 'They were yelling names at us and calling us "Nigger".'
"Crystal Mangum stated that Kim wanted to drop her off in Raleigh but she said no. She (Kim) said she would call the police. 'She (Kim) tried to push me out of her car at Kroger and leave but I wouldn't get out of the car.'
"'The Police came to Kroger and it was hard for me to talk and I couldn't walk. They (police) said I was drunk and they were going to put me in a 24 hours lockup. They took me to a place where there were 5-6 other police cars. I talked with an officer Jones and hold her what happened and she said she would get me help. They (police) took me from that place to Duke hospital.'"
Compared to Ms. Mangum's many other versions of what supposedly happened to her at the lacrosse team party, this one is much better.
It is a fabrication, of course, but a more thoughtful fabrication.
Reade Seligmann's alibi evidence is solid, so the time of the imaginary attack was moved up. But Reade still has solid alibi evidence (he was talking to his girlfriend via cell phone).
Ms. Mangum still claimed that Reade was one of her kidnappers, but this time she did not claim he either raped or sexually assaulted her.
Why Mr. Nifong did not immediately dismiss the sexual offense charge as well as the rape charge against Reade is a mystery. This time Ms. Mangum was not "certain" she was raped by anyone, but she was sure Reade had not sexually assaulted her. In due course. Mr. Nifong should be required to try to explain to the North Carolina State Bar.
Herewith the dozen specific questions asked by Investigator Wilson and answers by Ms. Mangum during the December 21, 2006 interview:
"1. How much did you have to drink upon arriving at 610 N. Buchanan Blvd?
Answer: 1/2 of the drink they gave her and left the rest in the bathroom
"2. How soon did you start dancing upon entering the house?
Answer: Within 2-5 minutes of getting inside.
"3. After the broomstick comment what happened?
Answer: We left the house.
"4. Where was your money and belongings, when you left the house the first time, after the broomstick comment and you stopped dancing?
Answer: In my purse in the Bathroom. My makeup and purse was in the Bathroom.
"5. When did you get paid for dancing?
Answer: When I arrived at the house going up the steps to go inside the back door.
"6. How much did you get paid and what did you do with the money?
Answer: I got paid $400.00 and I put it in my makeup bag (small purse) with my cell phone.
"7. When you left (departed) the house after the broomstick comment, how did you leave (exit) the house?
Answer: The same way we came in. Through the back door.
"8. When you and Kim went back inside the house what happened then?
Answer: We go separated. That's when I heard Kim tell them (guys) to keep their hands off her. I don't know if she walked outside the room or if the carried her out. I felt that 'Nikki' (Kim) left the house and left me inside during the rape.
[My Note: Rape? What rape? Hasn't Crystal reverting to her there-was-no-rape version?]
"9. After the broomstick comment and you left the house, what time was it when you returned back inside the house? The 2nd time?
Answer: about 11:35 PM
"10. What time did the rape start?
Answer: 3 to 5 minutes after going back inside, around 11:40 PM.
[My Note: RAPE? WHO WAS RAPED?]
"11. How long did the rape last and what time did it stop?
Answer: 10-15 minutes, ended about 12:00 midnight.
[My Note: RAPE? WHAT IS ALL THIS RAPE STUFF?]
"12. Are you certain that they used their penis to rape you?
Answer: I can't say 100% that it was a penis that was used because I couldn't see it. They had me bent over and my face pushed down to the floor so I couldn't see what they were using but I believe it was their penis. It felt like a penis, but it was a sharp pain. I couldn't say 100% that I saw them use their penis but it was certainly something.
[My Note: NOT the answer of someone giving up. The answer of someone setting up a new battle line. Why not ask what percentage Ms. Mangum would assign to the likelihood that it was a penis? Perhaps the rape charges were dropped to avoid cross-examination on Ms. Mangum's experience with differentiating penises from "something" else?]
"13. What did you do when the rape ended?
Answer: I sat in the bathroom for a few minutes and then ran out of the bathroom. They (guys) dragged me out of the house and dropped me on the steps. I started beating on the door all I wanted to do was get away from the people hurting me. I didn't know whether to go back inside or run out to the street because they (guys outside) were yelling names at me. So, I ran out in the yard and fell on the ground. The guys picked me up and put me in 'Nikki's' (Kim's) car."
Ready for a polygraph test, Ms. Mangum?
I think not. (After all, each of the Threem passed!)
Have help with the latest version?
I think so.
Will the latest version fly?
After the dozen questions, Investigator Wilson showed Ms. Mangum a picture from the Dan Abrams show on MSNBC showing her on the porch at the door and asked Crystal Mangum when that picture was taken. Ms. Mangum stated the picture was taken when she arrived and was going into the house because it was showing her putting the money in her purse.
No dispute that she was paid to entertain!
Investigator Wilson then asked Ms. Mangum to tell him the names the Three were using on March 13, 2006 since she now knows their real names.
Ms. Mangum answered that David Evans used Dan, Adam and Brett ; Reade Seligmann used Adam and Mat; and she did not remember a name being used for Collin Finnerty or if he was called by a name. She added that another Dan was present, Dan Flannigan, and he was not involved in rape (lucky him!).
Investigator Wilson asked Ms. Mangum to describe the mustache on David Evans, since David Evans apparently has never worn a moustache and claiming he was wearing one during the imaginary attack would impugn her credibility.
Given nine months to work on the problem, the best Ms. Mangum (and any advisers) could do was have her announce, "it wasn't a real mustache like yours, it was like a stubble or a shadow."
Investigator Wilson helpful responded,"Like a 5 o'clock shadow?
To which Ms. Mangum replied, "Yes like that."
Unsurprisingly, Investigator Wilson did not follow up with questions about Ms. Mangum's claimed inability to distinguish between a mustache and a shadow.
The Duke Three's lawyers happily filed a supplement to their meritorious motion to suppress, which they summarized this way:
"On December 21, 2006, and at an undisclosed location, the accuser was interviewed by an. investigator for the Office of the District Attorney; this marked the first time that a person connected with that Office had interviewed the accuser about the events of this case. The statement of the accuser was provided to defense counsel on Thursday, January 4, 2007. In her newest version of events, the accuser:
Now claims that the attack took place between 11:35 pm and Midnight, which, in addition to other objective evidence, is contradicted by the accuser’s own cell phone records and the cell phone records for Reade Seligmann and his girlfriend.
Recants her April statement that Reade Seligmann was the accuser who stood in front of her and made her commit a sex act. The accuser instead claims, for the first time, that Dave Evans was that person and further admits that Reade Seligmann did not comm it any sex act on her.
Recants her April statement that the attacker who looked like Dave Evans had a mustache and now says that the attacker who looked like Dave Evans did not have a mustache.
Recants her March and April statements that 'Matt,' ' Adam,' and 'Brett,' were three separate people, and now says that they were only two people.
Recants her March and April statements that each attacker used a separate name, and now claims that Dave Evans used three (and possibly four) names, that Reade Seligmann used two names, and that Collin Finnerty did not use any name during the attack.
Recants her numerous statements in March and April that she was certain that two of her attackers used their penises to penetrate both her vagina and her rectum, and now claims that she cannot be sure about penile penetration at all."
Mr. Nifong needs to be removed from office as well as the Duke case and his successor needs to clean up that office and investigate Ms. Mangum.
The sooner the defense files the sanctions motion against Mr. Nifong, the better!
Michael J. Gaynor has been practicing law in New York since 1973. A former partner at Fulton, Duncombe & Rowe and Gaynor & Bass, he is a solo practitioner admitted to practice in New York state and federal courts and an Association of the Bar of the City of New York member.
Gaynor graduated magna cum laude, with Honors in Social Science, from Hofstra University's New College, and received his J.D. degree from St. John's Law School, where he won the American Jurisprudence Award in Evidence and served as an editor of the Law Review and the St. Thomas More Institute for Legal Research. He wrote on the Pentagon Papers case for the Review and obscenity law for The Catholic Lawyer and edited the Law Review's commentary on significant developments in New York law.
The day after graduating, Gaynor joined the Fulton firm, where he focused on litigation and corporate law. In 1997 Gaynor and Emily Bass formed Gaynor & Bass and then conducted a general legal practice, emphasizing litigation, and represented corporations, individuals and a New York City labor union. Notably, Gaynor & Bass prevailed in the Second Circuit in a seminal copyright infringement case, Tasini v. New York Times, against newspaper and magazine publishers and Lexis-Nexis. The U.S. Supreme Court affirmed, 7 to 2, holding that the copyrights of freelance writers had been infringed when their work was put online without permission or compensation.
Gaynor currently contributes regularly to www.MichNews.com, www.RenewAmerica.com, www.WebCommentary.com, www.PostChronicle.com and www.therealitycheck.org and has contributed to many other websites. He has written extensively on political and religious issues, notably the Terry Schiavo case, the Duke "no rape" case, ACORN and canon law, and appeared as a guest on television and radio. He was acknowledged in Until Proven Innocent, by Stuart Taylor and KC Johnson, and Culture of Corruption, by Michelle Malkin. He appeared on "Your World With Cavuto" to promote an eBay boycott that he initiated and "The World Over With Raymond Arroyo" (EWTN) to discuss the legal implications of the Schiavo case. On October 22, 2008, Gaynor was the first to report that The New York Times had killed an Obama/ACORN expose on which a Times reporter had been working with ACORN whistleblower Anita MonCrief.