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Judge finds Duke prosecutor in contempt

allen griggsallen griggs Member Posts: 33,013 ✭✭✭
edited September 2007 in General Discussion
Judge finds Duke prosecutor in contempt

By AARON BEARD, Associated Press Writer 7 minutes ago

DURHAM, N.C. - Mike Nifong, the disgraced former Durham County district attorney, was held in criminal contempt of court Friday for lying to a judge when pursuing rape charges against three falsely accused Duke University lacrosse players.
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Superior Court Judge W. Osmond Smith III immediately moved to consider a punishment for Nifong, who has already been stripped of his law license and has resigned from office. He faces as many as 30 days in jail and a fine as high as $500.

Reading his decision from the bench minutes after the conclusion of two days of testimony, Smith said Nifong "willfully made false statements" to the court in September when he insisted he had given defense attorneys all results from a critical DNA test.

In fact, Smith found, Nifong had provided the defense with a report on the DNA testing that he knew to be incomplete. The omitted data contained test results showing that DNA of multiple men, none of whom were lacrosse players, was on a woman who said she was attacked at a March 2006 party thrown by Duke's lacrosse team.

Taking the stand in his own defense, Nifong insisted Friday that he didn't intentionally lie about whether he had turned over the DNA evidence. But he acknowledged the report he gave defense attorneys was incomplete.

"I now understand that some things that I thought were in the report were in fact not in the report," Nifong said. "So the statements were not factually true to the extent that I said all the information had been provided."

A defense attorney found the omitted data amid 2,000 pages of documents Nifong gave the defense months after the initial report. Nifong said that by the time he realized the data wasn't contained in that report, "it had been corrected. The defendants already had it."

"It was never my intention to mislead this or any other court," Nifong said. "I certainly apologize to the court at this time for anything I might have said that was not correct."

Earlier Friday, Brian Meehan, the director of a private lab who prepared the DNA testing report, said the omissions were a misunderstanding. He said Nifong asked him to test DNA samples from lacrosse players to see whether any matched genetic material found on the woman who told police she was raped.

Although male DNA was found, no sample matched a lacrosse player. Results from the other unidentified men was referenced as "non-probative" material in the report given to defense attorneys, Meehan said.

"My company and the company's assessment of that document request was that clearly there was a misunderstanding, that whoever went through that document we provided, that there were some things that they didn't understand completely, that clearly they got wrong," Meehan said.

Charles Davis, the attorney appointed to prosecute the contempt charge, asked Meehan whether Nifong's statement to the court - that the report encompassed everything he had discussed with Meehan - was true or false.

"It would be false because we don't include discussions in our reports," Meehan answered.

On Thursday, Meehan said he was the one who decided how to prepare the report stating no lacrosse player had been linked to the accuser. When Glover asked Meehan whether Nifong had asked him to leave anything out of the report, Meehan answered, "No."

Nifong ultimately recused himself from the case after being charged with ethics violations.

State prosecutors who took over the case dropped all charges against the three men and declared them innocent victims of a "tragic rush to accuse."

Nifong was disbarred in June for more than two dozen violations of the state's rules of professional conduct during his prosecution of the lacrosse case. He resigned a month later as district attorney.

Comments

  • n/an/a Member Posts: 168,427
    edited November -1
    Good, he needs to get death by shooting.
  • BarkingDogBarkingDog Member Posts: 841 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    how come the black stripper isnt being criminally charged in the case ? she deserves jail more than nifong
  • dongizmodongizmo Member Posts: 14,477 ✭✭
    edited November -1
    I wonder if they tried to match nifongs dna to the stripper??
    The ultimate result of shielding men from the effects of folly, is to fill the world with fools.
  • cbxjeffcbxjeff Member Posts: 14,752 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    30 days & $500.00? Wow, they REALLY are throwing the book at him!
    It's too late for me, save yourself.
  • sarge_3adsarge_3ad Member Posts: 8,387
    edited November -1
    quote:Originally posted by cbxjeff
    30 days & $500.00? Wow, they REALLY are throwing the book at him!


    Exactly what I was thinking. [xx(]
  • snarlgardsnarlgard Member Posts: 1,310 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Superior Court Judge W. Osmond Smith III immediately moved to consider a punishment for Nifong, who has already been stripped of his law license and has resigned from office. He faces as many as 30 days in jail and a fine as high as $500.

    Reading his decision from the bench minutes after the conclusion of two days of testimony, Smith said Nifong "willfully made false statements" to the court in September when he insisted he had given defense attorneys all results from a critical DNA test.

    far to little and too late to boot

    he should have to go threw just what he put them threw
    just to get reelected he put these boys threw hell
    and he should have to repay the boys and there parents the cost of attorneys
    Nifong, Jessie Jackson, Sharpton, the school and all the other who jump to conclusions should have to publicly appologize
  • SperrySperry Member Posts: 4,965 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    Refresh my memory [I read the AP story too]. Who is Glover? The article prints his name, but I dinna find it.

    What's with the bonus material? Trying to expand our horizons?
  • 180A180A Member Posts: 828 ✭✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    They sentenced the S O B to one day in jail. I also read that he has to pay the Bar back 9K in disbarment fees!
  • iluvgunsiluvguns Member Posts: 5,351
    edited November -1
    The one day jail sentence isn't his 'real' punishment. Losing his license to practice law is what hurt the weasel. And the civil suits haven't started coming yet (or if they have been filed, I haven't heard it). And they WILL be coming!! This guy isn't out of the woods yet, not by a long shot!!
  • p3skykingp3skyking Member Posts: 25,750
    edited November -1
    quote:Originally posted by snarlgard



    Nifong, Jessie Jackson, Sharpton, the school and all the other who jump to conclusions should have to publicly appologize


    This sure does indict a lot of GB Forum members too! [;)]

    It has never occured to me, but yes, those that would pounce on newbies and raise BS flags without knowing all the facts do have a common bond with Jesse Jackson.
    [}:)][:0][:p]
  • allen griggsallen griggs Member Posts: 33,013 ✭✭✭
    edited November -1
    quote:Originally posted by Sperry
    Refresh my memory [I read the AP story too]. Who is Glover? The article prints his name, but I dinna find it.

    What's with the bonus material? Trying to expand our horizons?



    OK I cleaned it up. Do you like that better?
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