"... these three individuals [David Evans, Collin Finnerty and Reade Seligmann,] are innocent of these charges."
North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper, Apr. 11, 2007
In today’s Durham Herald Sun’s account of testimony yesterday at DA Nifong’s ethics trial and reactions to the testimony, we read this excerpt:
[Defense attorney for David Evans, Brad Bannon,] criticized Nifong's inflammatory pre-trial statements. They included telling the news media that "one would wonder why one needs an attorney if one was not charged and had not done anything wrong."Yes, what Nifong did was terrible and almost certainly criminal. But I couldn’t help smiling at Cheshire’s remark.
As Bannon was testifying, courtroom spectator Betty Lawrence -- an attorney representing Nifong legal opponent and community activist Beth Brewer -- recalled being shocked when learning of that particular remark last year because of Americans' right to legal counsel.
"And to say that you can infer that somebody's guilty because they consult a lawyer is grossly unfair and goes against the whole scheme of things," Lawrence said.
Fellow Evans attorney Joe Cheshire said if he were questioning the Durham prosecutor, he would ask, " 'Who are those two people sitting with you, Mr. Nifong?' He would answer, 'They're my lawyers.' "
Cheshire said he'd remind Nifong of that pre-trial remark about not needing an attorney when innocent and ask, "What is going on here?"
What about you?