Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Talking to Regulars & Commenters – May 2, 2007

(A post in the old web log form: notes for those familiar with the material. Don’t look for hyperlinks or background in this post.

That said, to understand this post you should be very familiar with the two Talking posts I put up yesterday, May 1, here and here.)

In the “Nifong & the copier discovery” posts I've said I’m very skeptical of N&O reporter Joe Neff's report that Nifong first learned about the NTO on 3/23 when he discovered it on his office copier.

“Holy crap, what is going on,” Nifong is alleged to have asked nobody in particular?

How do we go from Sgt. John Shelton finding Mangum in the Kroger parking lot shortly after midnight on 3/14 “passed out drunk” and evidencing none of the severe injuries a woman brutally beaten and raped for 30 minutes by three strong males would evidence to Nifong’s chief assistant DA David Saacks requesting on 3/23 a NTO for 46 citizens to submit to DNA and police mug and torso photos solely on the basis of their race and membership on a sports team? And all that without his boss Nifong knowing anything about the NTO?

There’s more but you get the idea.

Almost all of what DPD learned starting on 3/14 and through 3/23 suggested the story was, as Kim Roberts told DPD on 3/20, a “crock.”

Where did “the push” come from to go for a NTO NC attorneys tell me was unprecedented in their experiences? How did that happen without Nifong ever knowing about it?

Kbp, whose made many astute comments on the case, commented starting with my words in italics:

"Sure, there was SANE nurse Tara Levicy’s “findings” but what Durham Police officer really believed those finding? Inv. Himan? Sgt. Gottlieb?"

They believed they could use her enough to get the NTO, and that's quite a bit IMO.
It is “quite a bit” that DPD would use her to get the NTO, given all the evidence DPD had suggesting Mangum’s story was a false witness.

I don’t know whether they believed what Levicy was telling them but they certainly used it in the request for the NTO.

Did Gottlieb and Himan believe Levicy’s “findings” or were her “findings” simply a means to their ends?

I’m betting kbp, most of you and I agree we need more information before we can answer that question with reasonable certainty.

That leaves the question of how Nifong could not know about the NTO.

I spent time today at the Durham Courthouse. I drove from there to DPD headquarters (1 mile); then from DPD to the house on N. Buchanan Blvd (1.1 miles) where I parked my car around the corner on Urban St., and spent almost an hour and a half walking around the house and the neighborhood.

I’ll say more about all of that tomorrow. The short of it: Durham has 250,000 people but the “courthouse crowd” and DPD and Trinity Park people intermingle. On the morning of March 14 some of them began talking about “this woman who was raped last night at the lacrosse party. That’s why the police were there.” The talk spread, the “details” grew independent of facts, and feelings intensified. Literally hundreds of people heard about the case in the following days. Many of them know Nifong. Some of them are often at the courthouse where he has his office. Some of them were his campaign supporters.

And none of them told Mike anything about the case? Not even his chief ADA? Nifong had to “discover” the NTO at his copier?

Doesn’t that sound like something you’d read in the N&O?

AMac made a comment I want to respond to but the hour is late and that will have to wait until tomorrow.

I hope you’re back.



kbp said...

Thanks John

We know Nifong signed for a subpoena to get the medical records of Crystal on 3/20. Sounds like a fairly standard process in a rape case, one that would not grab his attention, but it did involve 3 Dukies. Maybe he was making inquiries by then.

I still lean heavy towards the idea that Gottlieb and his team's action before the NTO indicates there was pressure before Mikey's involvement. We're seeing now how big Levicy's actions contributed to the frame, but I do not recall her "consistent..." comment being used in the 3/16 Affidavit for the SW, even though Himan had spoken with her that day.

The assignment of Gottlieb's team to be under Mikey's control is a topic we need more information on. It was sure getting busy during that 3/20-3/24 timespan.

Still so many questions!