District Attorney Mike Nifong: Two Weeks Ago Nobody Knew My Name

Tuesday, April 11, 2006
I listened to excerpts (on Fox TV) of Mike Nifong, DURHAM, N.C. District Attorney’s speech to the audience of North Carolina Central University, “the historically black university a few miles from Duke where the alleged victim is a student.” The following link leaves much to be desired, but here it is anyway.

The brief Fox on-line news story does not mention something which particularly caught my attention: the fact that Mike Nifong told the audience that two weeks ago few of them had ever heard of his name. He is now followed daily by a significant number of photographers and news reporters. I am admittedly not a credentialled psychiatrist, but I believe that this man subconsciouly blurted out something very important. Prosecutors like Mike Nifong and Patrick Fitzgerald generally work in the shadows. Only a major case provides them with publicity. Once the reason for the headlines disappear----they immediately return to obscurity. Has Nifong fallen in love with the publicity?

There is so much we do not know concerning the rape allegation against Duke University's lacrosse team. One must be careful not to jump to an invalid conclusion. Nonetheless, I suspect that the athletes are victims of racial prejudice. They are white guys and therefore must be guilty of violating a black woman. The truth doesn’t really matter. A few of them must be “lynched.”


CF said...

You bet they do get to love the limelight.

David Thomson said...

It is very fair to point out that Mike Nifong could become the darling of the radical Left. This opens the door to both fame---and fortune! Book offers and speeches can bring in some serious money.

Fresh Air said...

Reminds me of that character in D.C. during the sniper shootings. What was his name, Bullwinkle Something?

Knucklehead said...

Isn't District Attorney a pretty standard starting point for a political career?

terrye said...

This kind of attitude is exactly why I refused to call the law when I was raped.

I was watching ESPN one day and they had a copy of the email one of these boys sent to a friend before this happened. He said they had already decided to kill the bithces when they got there. Why is it ok to assume these girls are lying and the DA is a publicity whore? I don't know what happened, but neither does anyone else.

David Thomson said...

“I don't know what happened, but neither does anyone else.”

Nobody is claiming to have all the facts. The negative results of the DNA tests, however, are most disturbing. At this very moment, it appears the prosecutor is on an ego trip and a few white males must be “lynched” to satisfy the forces of the politically correct.

terrye said...

BTW, I do know that the DNA did not match and that something funny is going on with all of this. But these guys had a rep before this.

Needless to say that does not make it ok to bring a false charge, but I know from experience what it is like to be on the other side of this kind of thing and sometimes people need to refrain from making it worse by assuming they know what is going on when they do not.

End of lecture, I promise.

David Thomson said...

Does anyone remember the Tawana Brawley hoax? So far, this case reminds me of that scandal. We admittedly need further information. Still, at this moment I’m betting that the whole thing is a scam. Might I eventually be forced to eat my words? Of course, that is why I am very cautious with my rhetoric.

terrye said...


Yes, I remember it. What I don't understand is why conservatives are so happy there was no DNA. Like it some kind of contest between the good white boys and the bad black whore and they are choosing sides.

This is the Duke LaCrosse team, I don't know any of these people. For all I know they are a bunch of rich white brats in the habit of hurting people and getting away with it. I just fail to understand why we have to make everythig so political. Because if we do that, there will always be some terrible injustice. I can remember when I was a younger a young black woman was raped and killed in a town not far from me, nobody would turn the guy in. Finally years later his own daughter gave him up. There are literally thousands of cases like that out there. Do they prove that white men get away with murder? Not really. The Tawana case you talked about became what it became because of that liar Al Sharpton. That does not mean that every time a case goes bad it is the same thing.

I promised I would not lecture. I am such a liar.

CF said...

Terry, there was no DNA from any of the boys on her anywhere--not even on her clothing. And they say they have a pic of her entering the house while drunk and bruised and reentering the house after she said the incident occurred.And she has an unsavory record.

I understand how you feel, and I am sorry for what happened to you, but given the rush to judgment about these guys, it does appear the DA flapped his gums too much at the start. And he did it to promote himself.

ex-democrat said...

... and it was made political by the "black leaders" who immediately played the race/pc card, not by those commenting on the DNA evidence.

terrye said...


I am not saying that the girl told the truth. I am saying that we do not need to make this a political issue. It only makes it that much more emotional the next time something does happen. How many rapes are not reported because some girl is afraid of being called a whore?

BTW, those guys really did have some nasty stuff in their email about hurting women. I imagine that has something to do with the rush to judgment. I don't doubt she was drunk, so were they.

terrye said...

I went to a party at a fraternity house on my 18th birthday. I was a freshman at IU.

I decided I would have a couple of drinks. The next thing I knew I woke up battered and bruised and naked. I had no idea where I was. These guys were bragging. It was just one big joke to them. They did this kind of thing all the time. No big deal. After all I had been drinking. And I was just some working class kid on a scholarship and they were frat boys, with money.

So even today, whenever I hear a story about the La Crosse team at Duke, whose team members like to joke in their emails about killing bitches, who like to set up parties using made up names I guess I just wonder why I have to be happy because the DNA did not match. Why is this an issue for the rest of us to take sides in? Why the talk of lynching? Why are people smug about the fact that the girl appears to have been lying?

Rick Ballard said...


I think it may be a matter of shooting for distance in evaluation. I side with you in looking at rich kids screwing around - I have a deep distrust of a 20 year old Mr. Popular's abuse of those around him.

In the instance at hand I also have a very deep distrust of the DA. Competing visions, as it were. Leaving me with the hope that perhaps truth will out, but little faith in the probability of that eventuality.

Morgan said...

"There is no DNA evidence that shows she was touched by any of these boys" - Joe Cheshire, attorney for one of the players

This strikes me as an oddly worded statement.

Assuming it is true, is that because the players' DNA didn't match samples recovered from the victim, or because there was no DNA found on the victim to match to?

It's not at all clear to me that the latter exonerates the players - unless you assume that it's vanishingly unlikely that there can be a rape without DNA evidence being left behind. I doubt that's the case.

A lot of people around blogworld seem to be treating this information as proof positive that there was no rape. Do they know the former scenario to be true? Can anyone provide a link?

As for the DA's behavior, I think he ought to spend more time investigating and less time giving stump speeches.

David Thomson said...

“A lot of people around blogworld seem to be treating this information as proof positive that there was no rape.”

I have seen little evidence of this. My position is that the available evidence leaves much to be desired. The prosecutor has yet to release anything that seems substantial. I could be wrong, but my current theory is that this is simply another Tawana Brawley scam job. Let’s see what happens. I am not generally a betting man. My wagers are few and far between. I may have bet some $200 in the last quarter of a century. If I were to bet my last bottom dollar---my money would be on the high likelihood that this nothing more than a “lynching” of a few white boys. I will gladly eat crow if later events prove me incorrect. Sigh, that’s what’s so disconcerting about the blogosphere: it’s hard to hide your predictions which fall short. One can easily end up looking like a fool.

vnjagvet said...

This is a difficult case from many angles:

It is surely a criminal case because there is an accusation that four individuals raped and brutally assaulted a woman and assaulted her companion.

It is a higher education matter because there is testimony of disgusting behavior at a "party" where a large group of young athletes identified with a major university clearly put themselves in a position to be credibly accused of such conduct whether they did anything or not.

It is a social problem because all of the young men allegedly involved were (correctly) perceived as being privileged and catered to while the alleged victims were from a "less fortunate" socio-economic class.

It is a racial problem because the alleged victims were black and the alleged perpetrators were white.

It is a political problem because the district attorney is running for reelection.

Such cases surely stimulate strong feelings.

Terrye has been the victim of such a crime. Others may have children who have been wrongly accused of such a crime, or themselves have been wrongly accused.

On one thing we should all be able to agree. Until the evidence is in, none of us should be assuming much of anything.

So far as we know, on the available evidence, a rape or assault or at least rough sex has caused the alleged victim some trauma. There is not much evidence corroborating the testimony of the alleged victims as to who caused the trauma.

That is why a large audience is following this. Say tuned.

terrye said...

I just think this is more about race than rape. If all these kids were the same race we would not have heard of the case and if the girl were white and the boys black I wonder if people would be throwing the word lynching around.

BTW, has there ever been a case of white guys lynched for raping a black stripper? I doubt it.

CF said...

One of the team was Black . All of the team members were asked to and did provide DNA ,including one member who wasn't there.
It is a leap to believe all the guys were rich. Or even that everyone at Duke is.
But the envy factor is evident in the reaction of the non-Duke members of the community.Just as the agenda of the pc crowd is evident on campus.

No DNA from even one of the guys was found in her, on her, or even on her fingernails.

Fred Barnes reports tonight on Hume that the prosecutor has been flapping his gums about the case in his own political stump speeches.

I once had a long debate with my Russian law professor (who I really liked) , an immigrant from Lithuania who argued, that we were a nation of laws, not men. I noted he'd never been watching a prosecutor running for public office in action.
(Ditto Spitzer et al.)

vnjagvet said...

I don't think all of the Duke Lacrosse team are rich, just that they are all privileged in the sense that all college athletes consider themselves entitled.

Having been one, I have a sense of how that works on most campuses. The comments about this team from envious fellow students seems to corroborate my experience of many years ago.

completelyoutraged said...

THIS is nothing more than a completely transparent attempt by a going nowhere fast DA to put himself inline for a political and financial payday. Isn't it ironic that the accused are white, Catholic and come from households that believe success is earned, not an entitlement. Also, would this be going to trial with the evidence gathered and presented thus far if the residents were white and residents of Durham County, NC? I think not!