Sunday, June 03, 2007

DPD's Sgt. Shelton & Cpl. Addison

On May 31 Durham City Councilman Eugene Brown released a document: Questions concerning role of Durham Police Department in the Duke Lacrosse Case. The document is posted at It’s a “must read” for every Durham citizen and anyone else who cares about justice in the Duke lacrosse case.

This post concerns two parts of Councilman Brown’s document which appear in separate sections. However, when placed side-by-side and examined, they're extraordinarily revealing as to what two DPD officers did that was right and what certain other DPD officers did that had to be wrong.

What's more, when examined side-by-side, the two sections of Brown's document lead to no other conclusion than that DPD went many days deliberately telling the public things it knew to be false, in the process slandering and libeling innocent citizens.

The first part of Councilman Brown’s document we’ll look at has to do with some of the actions of DPD Sgt. John Shelton in the first hours following the party on the night of March 13/14. Brown asked:

"Why did it take nearly a month for DPD to talk with John Shelton, the officer who first picked up Ms. Mangum at the Kroger's on Hillsboro Rd., and why was Officer Shelton's dubious belief in Ms. Mangum's story given no credence with the investigators?"
Here’s the second part of Brown’s document we’ll look at:
"Before any indictments were issued, the DPD officially and repeatedly told the public that horrific crimes had been committed at the lacrosse party.

In late March 2006, I, and many others, received an email "wanted poster" from Durham CrimeStoppers [It was sent on 3/28/06. – JinC] which stated: 'The Duke Lacrosse Team solicited a local escort service for entertainment. The victim was paid to dance at the residence located at 610 N. Buchanan. The Duke Lacrosse Team was hosting a party at the residence. The victim was sodomized, raped, assaulted and robbed. This horrific crime sent shock waves throughout our community.'

The message later appeared, I believe, on the Trinity Park list serve and other media outlets as well. [It also appeared in poster form with an official DPD header. See facsimile here at – JinC] Several questions arise from this:

-Who authorized Officer Addison to create and distribute such a false and libelous posting and to personally appear on WRAL (March 24, 2006) and state: "You are looking at one victim brutally raped." Since he was not an investigator on this case, how did he reach this fallacious conclusion? Who finally ordered the poster to be removed from the public arena?"
Now, how do the two sections of Councilman Brown’s document become so revealing when placed side by side?

Because of something Sgt. Shelton, Cpl. Addison and DPD Officer Willie Barfield, who’ll enter this post shortly, all knew on the night of March 13/14.

They also knew it on March 24 when DPD officers working the case were told to report to DA Mike Nifong and Addison began acting as DPD spokesperson. And they knew it on March 28 when Addison sent out the text of the Durham Crimestoppers Duke lacrosse Wanted poster Brown cited.

What those three officer knew is such signifant and irrefutable evidence that a beating and gang-rape DID NOT take place at the party, that neither DA Nifong nor his DPD "helpers" have ever questioned Shelton and Barfield's decisions to take Mangum to Durham Access.

What's more, those in media who enabled the sliming of the white members of the lacrosse team and the attempted frame-up of three innocent members of it, have largely ignored the matter.

The matter is this: as veteran police officers, Shelton, Addison and Barfield know about the kinds and severity of physical injuries a woman suffers when she’s brutally beaten and raped by even one strong young man, to say nothing of being brutally beaten and raped by three strong young men. Like all DPD officers they're trained to administer emergency first aid to victims of such horrific crimes while they await the arrival of the EMS ambulance and emergency medical assistance.

Addison knew Mangum had suffered no such injuries and needed no emergency medical assistance. He knew she hadn’t even suffered slight injuries.

That's because Addison knew Sgt. John Shelton, who responded to a call shortly after midnight on March 14, found Mangum in Roberts’ car at a Kroger parking lot, in Shelton’s words, “just passed out drunk.”

Had Shelton seen any signs of injuries he would have arranged to take Mangum to Duke Hospital, which is less than a mile from the Kroger parking lot.

But Shelton saw no evidence of any physical injuries. So he arranged for another officer, Willie Barfield, to take Mangum to Durham Access, which provides short-term domicile and “support services” for substance abusers.

Barfield also saw no signs of any physical injuries.

Barfield only later took Mangum from Durham Access to Duke Hospital after she said at Access she’d been raped.

Addison understood the significance of his brother officers’ judgments and actions that night.

Addison knew Mangum’s story was false. Yet he went for days telling the public about “horrific crimes” and the players “wall of silence” even though, as we later learned, the players had been extremely cooperative with police.


Some people claim Addison was "free-lancing" and somehow convinced himself that what he was saying was true.

That explanation doesn’t stand scrutiny.

Why didn’t, for example, Addison’s supervisor, DPD Maj. Lee Russ, on March 25 direct Addison to correct his false statements? Russ knew what Shelton and Barfield knew. He also knew what Addison had said in the CS Wanted poster was false.

But Russ did nothing to correct the Wanted poster until April 10, the day the public was to be told the first round of DNA test results were all negative.

On April 10 Russ finally directed Addison to make a number of changes in the libelous Wanted poster.

Emails from Russ to Addison I've reviewed reveal Addison started making the changes within the hour.

The "Addison was 'free-lancing'" explanation is nonsense.

So back to the question of why Addison, as DPD spokesperson and CrimeStoppers coordinator, went for days telling the public what he and DPD knew were lies about “horrific crimes” and the players' “stonewall of silence?”

You know the answer: he was told to.

But who told him to do it? What was he told? And why did certain officials, sworn to uphold justice, want to first slime 46 kids and then seek to send 3 of them to prison for most, if not all, of the rest of their lives?

Message to Councilman Brown: Thank you. Many of us will be looking for ways to help you.


wayne fontes said...

John, you might want to edit the paragraph about Shelton to read "Sheltons disbelief in Ms. Mangum's dubious story" or something to that effect.

JWM said...

Dear Wayne,

The "Sheltons disbelief etc, etc,..." is quotation of what Brown said.

Thanks to you, I've made that clearer for readers by adding a "Brown said."

I've also put both sections in quotation marks, again thanks to you.

There's also the matter that Brown didn't use the possessive when he said "Sheltons."

I let that one pass.

Your comment is helpful. It’s the kind of comment that Brown, who I've heard "reads the blogs," including this one will, will I bet appreciate.

I know I do.



Anonymous said...

Great work, John. You deserve lots of praise for your persistence in the poster libel as well as your doggedness in pointing out the News & Observer's major role in the early days of Nifong's frame of the lacrosse players. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

I think you would be a wonderful addition to the City Council Commission to investigate the DPD's handling/creation of the Duke Hoax.

You are so knowledgeable and well versed in this matter that, at the very least, they should interview you.

AMac said...

John, the context you provide for Cpl. Addison's actions is invaluable.

He should be asked, directly, for an explanation. Under oath would be best. But a simple Q & A from a commission of inquiry or even a curious reporter should still be very revealing.

It's encouraging to know that many of the people interested in answers about the Durham PD and Duke are reading this blog.

Well before D.A. Nifong seized on the Hoax as his election ticket, somebody instructed Cpl. Addison.


bill anderson said...


Good job, here. All we have to know is that the Durham police from the start set out to frame people, and Nifong also drove that "policy." Now we are hearing lies put on top of lies.

There truly is a "blue wall of silence" in Durham -- the police. If there is any criminal solidarity at all, it is with the DPD. Once again, we see police officers standing together to hide criminal conduct by one of their own.

Anonymous said...

Why won't Cooper investigate the criminal activities of the Durham police department?

kbp said...


As you are prolly aware, I've been saying for a long time there's more to what happened between 3/16 - 3/24, than what most have complained about.

Mikey is a problem, but he is not the one that started this problem.

Someone above Gottlieb allowed or pushed him into this frame.

I think your post here (while I was away) is hitting closer to the questions that need to be addressed.

Thanks again!