Raleigh News & Observer’s stories of March 24 and 25, 2006 set in motion the Duke lacrosse witch hunt and the public part of the attempt to frame three transparently innocent Duke students for gang rape and other felonies. Both stories carried the bylines of Samiha Khanna and Anne Blythe.
Khanna recently left the N&O. Blythe remains and on Dec. 5 reported a story which began:
A federal judge on Thursday rejected the appeal of fallen prosecutor Mike Nifong to keep his case in bankruptcy court.The rest of the story’s here.
The ruling opens the door for the three exonerated lacrosse players to again pursue malicious prosecution allegations against the former district attorney.
I’ve just sent an email to N&O executive editor for news John Drescher. It’s text follows. I’ll let you know what, if anything, I hear back.
A Dec. 5 story -- “Suit against Nifong can go ahead” -- under reporter Anne Blythe’s byline refers to “fallen prosecutor Mike Nifong.”
We typically refer to our war dead as “fallen heroes” and a police officer wounded or killed in the line of duty as “the fallen officer.”
That being the case, why use “fallen” for Nifong?
Why not use “disbarred?”
Even Nifong's supporters must admit its correct; and most people will, I think, agree its a much more appropriate adjective for Nifong than "fallen."
There's also “disgraced.” I’ve seen the AP use it a number of times to describe Nifong.
Please consider no longer using “fallen prosecutor,” which Blythe and the N&O chose to term Nifong in your Dec. 5 story and in a number of previous ones as well.
Thank you for your attention to this request.
I’ve posted it at my blog and will, if you respond, publish there your response in full.