Monday, April 30, 2007

INNOCENT: Three “Musts” at Liestoppers

"... these three individuals [David Evans, Collin Finnerty and Reade Seligmann,] are innocent of these charges."

North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper, Apr. 11, 2007
Three “must reads” at LS and it’s only Monday.

Joan Foster starts off with “Sleeping with Snakes.” Her son’s at college and his roommate has a snake.

Somehow that reminds Joan of Duke and its head, Dick (“Whatever they did was bad enough”) Brodhead and the 43K a year that parents shell out to a school that says it treated Reade Seligmann just fine.

At least “just fine” according Dick Brodhead and Duke’s trustees.

Come to think of it, the A&S faculty Group of 88 members have made no complaints about Duke’s treatment of Seligmann, have they? And we all know how much they complain.

So maybe Duke did do “just fine” by Seligmann, although not many of us think so.

In fact, we think Duke’s trustees helped to drive Seligmann away while thet held onto Dick Brodhead and “Dick’s senior team” with salary and benefit packages that in many instances exceed $500,000 per year.

Joan ends with a message for Brodhead and Duke that brings us back to a snake.

There is a Snake in the Prosecutor's Office in Durham. His name is Michael B. Nifong.

Nifong, the 27 yr. assistant DA, "shed his skin" as soon as he was given the reins of power. Like all snakes, Nifong depended on his sense of smell, and he immediately smelled the race-pandering opportunity in the Hoax. He cannot shed his scales at this late date and ask a nation to forget or these families to forgive.

City Manager Baker could have been Saint Patrick and acted to rid Durham of this poisonous snake. Instead, Baker currently seems to have chosen to play Cleopatra and clutch the venomous asp to his city's bosom. This is unacceptable to decent people everywhere.

We need, Mr. Brodhead, to "await" NOTHING. We demand some leadership.
Joan’s post is followed by Phillip Wood’s “The Jilted Cheerleader.”

That would be Rev. John Fitzpatrick, president of the Durham Criminal Defense Lawyers Association and pastor of One Love Ministries.

Phillip notes Fitzpatrick:
“has been a loyal and vocal supporter of Durham County’s rogue District Attorney, Mike Nifong. [However, the Attorney General’s Nifong/Mangum Hoax Summary of Conclusions appears to have finally brought some clarity to the once ardent Hoax apologist. …
Fitzpatrick, the jilted cheerleader, expressed his disillusionment to the Herald Sun:
"It's kind of deflating to think he could prosecute someone when the evidence was so insurmountably lacking," lawyer John Fitzpatrick said of Nifong, who has declined comment…"I would love to hear why [Nifong] chose to proceed on this case," he said.
Wouldn’t we all, Reverend.

Phillip continues:
To understand the totality of Rev. Fitzpatrick’s turnaround, we’ve prepared a chronology of his encouragement, support, and apologies for Defendant Nifong and his hijacked Hoax.
And then, Good Lord, do we ever get a chance to appreciate Fitzpatrick’s support for Nifong this past year. No wonder the poor man is “deflated.”

Philip put together a great post with lots of help from the quotable Fitzpatrick. My favorite quote is from Dec. 23, 2006. That was after Nifong requested dismissal of the rape charges because the false accuser “was no longer sure a penis had been used:”
Fitzpatrick said the dismissal conceivably could strengthen Nifong's case on the kidnapping and sex-offense charges.

"He no longer has to explain away the lack of semen," Fitzpatrick said. "If a penis was not used, it would automatically explain the lack of semen. Mike [Nifong] doesn't need the semen part now."
Phillip didn’t make that up. Fitzpatrick actually said it. Read the post.

The third post is not easily summarized although the title lets you know just what it’s about: “Durham City Manager Baker Approves of Corrupt Police Practices, Again.”

This from the post (another outstanding Phillip Wood effort) provides the post”s main points:
In the Nifong/Mangum Hoax, a demonstrably unstable false accuser was encouraged by Durham police to randomly identify three innocent young men for a crime that the independent investigation by the NC Attorney General’s Office proved never occurred.

Acting as willing accomplices of a politically motivated prosecutor determined to seek fraudulent indictments vital to his election campaign, Durham police then presented those “identifications” to a grand jury in order to gain indictments of factually innocent men.

An ethical city manager would investigate and publicly explain the departmental failures that resulted in the Durham PD docilely complying with the malicious whims of a rogue prosecutor willing to sell his soul to win an election.

For [Durham City Manager Patrick] Baker, it appears that absolving the Durham Police Department of responsibility outweighs ensuring that similar injustice is avoided [“the next time”] in Durham.
Phillip has written one terrific post. I plan to send links to Durham Mayor Bill Bell and every member of the Durham City Council.

The information and commentary Phillip provides are the kinds of public information and service we used to find in quality newspapers.

It’s a lengthly post. Some of you may want to do what I did: print it out and read it in bed and then again the next day.

Thanks, Liestoppers for three “musts.”


Joe T. said...

I love Joan's piece of prose about Baker/Saint Patrick/Cleopatra. What a good writer!