Durham DA Mike Nifong
Police Enter Dormitory at Duke to Query Players in Rape Case
By VIV BERNSTEIN
Published: April 15, 2006
DURHAM, N.C., April 14 — Four days before a grand jury is expected to be asked to indict one or more members of the Duke men's lacrosse team, the police entered a campus dormitory Thursday night to interview players as part of their investigation into rape allegations.
The police did not have a search warrant but had alerted Duke's campus police before the visit, the university said in a statement Friday.
Robert C. Ekstrand, a lawyer who is representing 30 members of the team, said two detectives entered at least one dorm room to speak to a lacrosse player.
Duke's associate vice president for campus security and safety, Aaron Graves, said in a statement: "They were there as part of the ongoing police investigation of the March 13 incident on North Buchanan Boulevard. The purpose of the visit was to conduct interviews. We do not know who they interviewed during the hour and 15 minutes they were in the Edens Residence Hall."
Michael B. Nifong, the Durham County district attorney, is leading the investigation of rape allegations made by a 27-year-old woman, a student at nearby North Carolina Central University who was hired by members of the Duke lacrosse team to dance at an off-campus party on March 13. She said she was sexually assaulted by three of the players in a bathroom. No criminal charges have been filed against any Duke players.
Defense attorneys have said they expect Mr. Nifong to ask the grand jury on Monday to indict one or more players.
OK, now can we stop pretending she cooked up this tale. The defense lawyers were spinning, but let's be serious for a minute. This is Nifong's job. His sex crimes investigators are experienced in both dealing with rape victims and dealing with Duke.
There may be a lot of taudry shit around this, but in the end, the DA has enough to go to a grand jury and the defense knows it.
I am mysitified as to why people think the DA is an idiot. Because only an idiot would push a rape case based on lies, and they have seen them more than once. Let's just assume that the DA is fairly competent at sending people to jail, and is going to have enough to make a case.
I can bet some of those 30 team members will get their own lawyers soon enough
Why do I think the DA believed her? Very simply, she volunteered for a polygraph. In a he said/she said kind of deal, that's a quick way to see who's bullshitting or not. With a not deceptive polygraph in hand, he can go from there.
This isn't keystone cops, the Durham DA deals with sex crimes all the time, the only difference is that it seems a gang rape occured. But this idea that she lied, she was drunk, she was running a prostitution scam are not ideas they DA didn't have weeks ago. And they had the power to check all of that out. You know, badges and subpeonas. You don't think they didn't check her previous clients and coworkers? Talk to her family?
Come on. It isn't easy to lie to the cops unless they want you to.
Another thing which I think is likely, will be other people with complaints about this team. I don't think that this is the only person ever to have a bad experience with the lacrosse team. Believe me, the DA has a lot of stuff about these guys, like their criminal records, 15 of them have one, that hasn't made the papers......yet.
This isn't a TV show, everyone is playing their cards close to their chest. Remember, if it didn't happen, these guys risk having their reputations ruined. If it did, they're co-conspirators in a heinious crime.
If someone is named, their lives will be an open book, not just the victim.
posted by Steve @ 12:07:00 AM