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"And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." - John 8:32
WEBCommentary Contributor
Author:  Michael J. Gaynor
Bio: Michael J. Gaynor
Date:  October 15, 2006
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Topic category:  Other/General

Durham County's Choice: Never Mind or Nevermore

On October 13, The Herald-Sun published a fawning letter by Durham attorney L.R. "Lee" Castle" purporting to explain why he would be voting for Michael B. Nifong as Durham County, North Carolina'sDistrict Attorney.

I'mdelighted thatMr. Castle wrote it and The Herald-Sun published it.

I'm sure Mr. Castle and people like him will vote for Mr. Nifong.

My hope is thatevery voter in Durham County reads his letter before voting.

It speaks volumes about what is wrong with Durham.

It should inspire the people of Durham to take corrective action.

Herewith the text of the letter (nothing omitted):

"I am sick and tired of people who accuse Mike Nifong of using the lacrosse case for political gain when they are using the case for their own political purposes. Let's put this mess into perspective. I am a long time Durham defense attorney. I have never tried a case against the district attorney. I have tried cases against Jim Hardin and Mike Nifong when they were assistant district attorneys (ADAs). The vast majority of cases are resolved between defense attorneys and ADAs. Sure the DA needs to understand the law and trial work so he can supervise those working under him, but the ADAs carry the load. Any DA is only as good as the people he gathers around him. He is primarily an administrator not a trial lawyer. He runs an office of several ADAs and a large support staff. Durham County has some of the most experienced, capable, and accessible ADAs that I have worked with. Nifong may have made mistakes concerning the lacrosse case, but he has done his job as an administrator by gathering around him people who do good work. Can we be sure that Lewis Cheek or Steve Monks or whomever the governor might select will surround himself with excellent ADAs? Neither candidate has addressed any issue but the lacrosse case. I will not vote based on a single case. I will vote based on the thousands of cases handled capably each year by the ADAs in Nifong's office. I will vote for Mike Nifong."

Mr. Castle's malevolent message is that his fellow Durham County voters should blithely ignore the Duke case--the elephantin the room--in deciding for whom to vote for district attorney.

Never mind that the so-called Duke case is really three cases. (Yes, Reade Seligmann, Collin Finnerty and David Evans each counts as a whole human being whose God-given and unalienable rights to liberty and the pursuit of happiness, if not life, have been threatened by a desperate accuser who needed to say something that would keep her from being incarcerated for her own sake, Crystal Gail Mangum, and an out-of-control rogue prosecutor for whom the Duke case was a gift from Satan, Michael B. Nifong.)

Never mind that the Durham County district attorney is obligated to be a fair and impartial minister of justice inEVERY case.

Never mind that if the Duke Three can be railroaded, ANYONE can be railroaded.

Never mind that Mr. Nifong used the Duke case to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat in the Democrat primary last May instead of overseeing a fair and impartial investigation as he was duty-bound to do.

Never mind that Mr. Nifong publicly assured the world that there had been a rape when the issue in the case was whether or not there had been sexual activity, not whether or not it was consensual and...THERE WAS NO RAPE, MUCH LESS A GANG RAPE.

Never mind that Mr. Nifong refused polygraph offers that would have guided the investigation in the right direction.

Never mind that Mr. Nifong did not polygraph the accuser, Crystal Gail Mangum, whose criminal, medical and employment history are what they are.

Never mind that Ms. Mangum told a variety of conflicting stories.

Never mind that Ms. Mangum's minor internal injury was consist with voluntary use of a vibrator and Ms. Mangum reportedly had used a vibrator while "performing" for money.

Never mind that it took a very long time for Ms. Mangum topick defendants.

Never mind that Ms. Mangum's descriptions of assailants as recorded by Detective Himan did not fit the Duke Three well, especially Collin Finnerty.

Never mind that Mr. Nifong ordered a fundamentally flawed identification procedure in which Ms. Mangum was shown only photos of young white men on the 2006 Duke Men's Lacrosse Team.

Never mind that Kim Roberts, the second stripper, promptly said that the gang rape claim was "a crock."

Never mind that Ms. Roberts was not asked important questions about Ms. Mangum's story by the prosecution and then contradicted critical aspects of that story after the scandalous (and constitutionally outrageous gag order issued by Judge Kenneth Titus) was lifted by Judge Osmond Smith and Ed Bradley of CBS's "60 Minutes" interviewed her for a broadcast that will air on Sunday, October 15.

Never mind that Mr.Nifong banked on DNA evidence to make his case and then dismissed it when it did not implicate any team member, much less any of the Duke Three.

Never mind that there is no evidence to confirm Ms. Mangum's claim, the Duke Three did not kidnap, rape or sexually assault and their prosecution is not their fault.

Never mind that Ms. Mangum has a history of claiming to have been a victim of a crime and then confirmatory evidence could not be found or she dropped the claim.

Never mind that none of the Duke Three ever had been charged with sexual misconduct, either criminally or civilly.

Never mind that NO ONE has come forward to say that ANY of them ever sexually harassed anyone. (In the William Kennedy Smith alleged rape case, three women came forward with disturbing claims, the judge excluded evidence relating to them and a jury acquitted.)

Never mind that Mr. Nifong's public statements about the case were highly prejudicial to the defendants and created racial tensions.

Never mind that Mr. Nifong's claim that the defense's polling of a few hundred potential jurors was improper was bogus and rejected by Judge Osmond Smith.

Never mind that Mr. Nifong no longer supports the story he told to obtain indictments of the Duke Three and now says the imaginary rape took no more than ten minutes instead of thirty.

Never mind that Mr. Nifong refused to consider evidence of innocence before seeking indictments.

Never mind that Mr. Nifong changed the story to keep Reade Seligmann in the case after his alibi was detailed and substantiated.

Never mind that Mr. Nifong's discovery has been slowly and incompletely provided and there is nothing there to support an indictment based on probably cause, much less proof of guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, against any of the Duke Three.

Never mind that Mr. Nifong is wasting taxpayer money on a persecution.

Never mind that Mr. Nifong has embarrassed Durham as well as himself.

Never mind that David Evans lost a good job because he was wrongly and wrongfully indicted.

Never mind that Reade Seligmann and Collin Finnerty were suspended by Duke University because they were wrongly and wrongfully indicted.

Never mind that the Duke Three and their families and friends have suffered enormously because Mr. Nifong felt (rightly) that he needed to have them indicted in order to win a primary.

Never mind that great sums of money that could have been better spent have been spent by the families of the Duke Three on defending against wrongly and wrongfully obtained indictments.

INSTEAD, ignore all that, and vote for Mr. Nifong, because Mr. Castle has fine relationships with the current assistant district attorneys.

Mr. Nifong shamelessly pandered to blacks who believed that Ms. Mangum's gang rape claim was bona fide instead of bogus.

Mr. Castle shamelessly pandered to Mr. Nifong and his assistant district attorneys.

And never mind that Mr. Nifong harassed and put to considerable expense a cab driver(black, by the way) for confirming Reade Seligmann's alibi (cabdriveracquitted by brave Durham jury on baseless misdemeanor charge that had not been pursued for years and would not have been pursued if another cab driver had driven the good-tipping Reade instead).

Instead of never minding, the Durham County voters need to mind greatly and, in voting, send this message to Mr. Nifong and his toadies and protectors: NEVERMORE!


Michael J. Gaynor

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Biography - Michael J. Gaynor

Michael J. Gaynor has been practicing law in New York since 1973. A former partner at Fulton, Duncombe & Rowe and Gaynor & Bass, he is a solo practitioner admitted to practice in New York state and federal courts and an Association of the Bar of the City of New York member.

Gaynor graduated magna cum laude, with Honors in Social Science, from Hofstra University's New College, and received his J.D. degree from St. John's Law School, where he won the American Jurisprudence Award in Evidence and served as an editor of the Law Review and the St. Thomas More Institute for Legal Research. He wrote on the Pentagon Papers case for the Review and obscenity law for The Catholic Lawyer and edited the Law Review's commentary on significant developments in New York law.

The day after graduating, Gaynor joined the Fulton firm, where he focused on litigation and corporate law. In 1997 Gaynor and Emily Bass formed Gaynor & Bass and then conducted a general legal practice, emphasizing litigation, and represented corporations, individuals and a New York City labor union. Notably, Gaynor & Bass prevailed in the Second Circuit in a seminal copyright infringement case, Tasini v. New York Times, against newspaper and magazine publishers and Lexis-Nexis. The U.S. Supreme Court affirmed, 7 to 2, holding that the copyrights of freelance writers had been infringed when their work was put online without permission or compensation.

Gaynor currently contributes regularly to,,, and and has contributed to many other websites. He has written extensively on political and religious issues, notably the Terry Schiavo case, the Duke "no rape" case, ACORN and canon law, and appeared as a guest on television and radio. He was acknowledged in Until Proven Innocent, by Stuart Taylor and KC Johnson, and Culture of Corruption, by Michelle Malkin. He appeared on "Your World With Cavuto" to promote an eBay boycott that he initiated and "The World Over With Raymond Arroyo" (EWTN) to discuss the legal implications of the Schiavo case. On October 22, 2008, Gaynor was the first to report that The New York Times had killed an Obama/ACORN expose on which a Times reporter had been working with ACORN whistleblower Anita MonCrief.

Gaynor's email address is

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Copyright 2006 by Michael J. Gaynor
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