I prefer that the whole truth be known and believe that the players as a group will be the better for it and any who prefer otherwise (that is, want to conceal part of the whole truth) ask too much (as Duke University does, when it demands confidentiality as a settlement condition).
To those who asked me why I suspected a hoax: (1) I followed Tawana Brawley One closely; (2) the sensational yarn that became a political lifeline, albeit temporarily, for a prosecutor about to lose his job, a nightmare for lacrosse players and their families and a dream come true for the political correctness extremists in the media and academia, was a devilish way for an ex-convict stripper mother of out-of-wedlock children to try to achieve fame and fortune but virtually impossible to be true; (3) the players said there was NO sex instead of claiming consensual sex; (4) players offered to take polygraph tests and the prosecutor declined their offer; (5) players gave DNA samples and their DNA test results were favorable; and (6) the first two players indicted were sophomores who had graduated from elite Catholic prep schools and definitely not the type to kidnap, rape or sexually assault. (In fact, there was not a kidnapper, rapist or sexual assaulter on the whole team of 47.) After I read that Stuart Taylor, America's top legal commentator, had written that "the available evidence le[ft] [him] about 85 percent confident that the three members who have been indicted on rape charges are innocent and that the accusation is a lie," I considered exoneration a matter of time, the experience excruciating for the real victims and vindication inevitable. (It was obvious to me that somehow Mr. Taylor had evidence available to him that I would not be reading about in The New York Times, which eagerly treated the false accuser as a victim instead of an accuser and the rogue prosecutor as a hero instead of a horror.) Eventually the basic truth would carry the day, to the extreme political correctness crowd's extreme embarrassment and thoroughly deserved dismay.
Soon after my third of what became hundreds of articles on the Duke case, in which I referred to "an accuser who should be prosecuted, three Duke lacrosse players who never should have been indicted, a prosecutor abusing his office and the New Black Panthers out to exploit the situation while posing as champions of black womanhood" and "a sad situation being exploited by opportunists and racists," I received this email message: "Your article on the Duke case is wonderful. As a family member of one of the accused, I can tell you how much we appreciate it when intelligent people take the time to assess the situation and write about it fairly as we feel you have done."
Fairness is key. Such situations need to be assessed fairly, not exploited, exaggerated, minimized or excused.
I'm a critic of false accusers, rogue prosecutors, reckless reporters, media manipulators, cowardly politicians and insidious indoctrinators shamelessly peddling horrendous lies while pompously posing as highly principled educators and arrogantly abusing their power instead of doing their duty.
Everyone should be.
I am NOT an apologist for the 2005-2006 Duke University Men's Lacrosse Team, however.
Only those hired for the purpose should be.
I prefer that the whole truth be known and believe that the players as a group will be the better for it and any who prefer otherwise (that is, want to conceal part of the whole truth) ask too much (as Duke University does, when it demands confidentiality as a settlement condition).
I do not claim that any team member is perfect. All of them are human (and young). I have consistently criticized the bulk of them for behaving badly, to varying degrees, when they partied during spring break in March of 2006. Their parents, their former coach and their girlfriends deserved much better from them, and they deserved much better from themselves. But not all team members even attended the party, one left with his girlfriend before the strippers arrived (good for him!), few who stayed behaved rudely and not all even knew that strippers had been hired or wanted strippers to be hired.
Like everyone else, each team member is an individual responsible for his conduct, but not for the conduct of others. None of the team members is a rapist, kidnapper, sexual abuser or robber deserving prosecution, much less persecution; and all of them are victims, not only of a false accuser, a rogue prosecutor and manipulated judges and grand jurors, but also of political correctness gone wild in the media and even at Duke University, which owed them due process and fairness.
I disapprove of stripper parties, underage drinking, facilitating underage drinking, N word use (even in retaliation), crude suggestions (sexual or otherwise), vulgarity (even in private email), and petty theft, but I disapprove much more of bogus criminal charges, abuse of power, corruption of the criminal justice system and an attempt to frame people and imprison them for decades. All that was so before and since the party and it's going to continue.
My support of the team members, both indicted and not indicted, against false charges, media hysteria, prosecutorial abuse and reverse racism was not approval of any conduct of which I disapprove, but what I considered the right thing to do in the exigent circumstances. (When a person is drowning, you throw that person a life preserver without asking whether he or she went swimming where he or she should not have been instead of lettinghim or her drown for trespassing.)
I, for one, want the whole truth about the so-called Duke lacrosse case came to become known and all individuals and entities with civil or criminal liability to be held accountable in all appropriate forums, not just Durham County, North Carolina District Attorney Michael B. Nifong. Thus, I loathe United States Attorney General Alberto Gonzales' failure to order a federal investigation even now and the confidential settlements that Duke quietly negotiated in order to avoid discovery and trial (and even a publicly filed complaint by the families of the indicted scholar athletes), because this truth should not be confidential and silence about wrongdoing (especially of such magnitude and general interest) should not be purchased or sold.
In "Duke Case: From Phony First-Degree Felonies to Phony Petty Theft?," posted February 6, 2007, foreshadowing the possibility of petty theft, I wrote, somewhat cryptically:
"I can't say I didn't expect it.
"North Carolina journalist and television commentator Cash Michaels (the person covering the Duke case for America's Black Press) is focusing on some $20 bills that allegedly changed hands at that unfortunate lacrosse team party last March and giving credence to the notion that there was a robbery at that party.
"With the first-degree rape charges in the so-called Duke case voluntarily dismissed, and the first-degree kidnapping and sexual offense charges soon (but not soon enough) to be dismissed, Mr. Michaels is saying that some money is missing (more than half of $400) and seems to be looking for a robbery charge to keep the ordeal going (he didn't mention the possibility of prosecuting the complainant for a false report though).
"No, I'm not making it up!
"See 'THE ALLEGED ROBBERY NO ONE TALKS ABOUT, WEEK OF FEBRUARY 1-7, 2007,' originally posted in The Wilmington Journal on February 3, 2007.
With the co-captains' written statements now public, I'm at last free to write about them.
Those statements indicated to me that the Hoax was a hoax, but they also revealed the possibility of petty theft, specifically the possibility that a person who felt scammed by the strippers resorted to self-help instead of small claims court. David Evans defense lawyer Brad Bannon assured me "that Dave Evans is one of the most honorable and stand-up people [he had ever met or known in [his] life." David's magnificient public statement after his utterly undeserved indictment suggested that, but David's written statement for the police (written without benefit of parental or legal counsel) shows David beginning with "Danny Flannery called 'Allure' for a stripper" and describing his own role as money collector. David added that when teammates told him they thought they had been "hustled," he told them he "would gladly pay to have [the strippers] leave" and he "would have called the police then" if he had not been concerned about "bad publicity for our team." Amazingly (to me), David speculated in his statement that either of two teammates might have taken some money that had been in the possession of a stripper: Peter Lamade, who made the broomstick remark (as well as the sensational pass to Zack Greer that saved the day in the semi-final victory over Cornell) and Ryan McFayden, who wrote that vile private email to teammates after the party. So David "stood up" for the money taking claim.
If David is right that a teammate took money back, it is particularly tragic, because it gives a fig leaf of sorts to the politically correct extremists who were shown to be so terribly wrong about what happened at that party, but insist that bad things happened. Police reportedly ate Dan Flannery's birthday cake (taken away as evidence, apparently), but what happened to the bit of money that David said was taken? David in his statement: "I put the $160 in my desk, and the next day put it on our living room table."
With the report that false accuser Crystal Gail Mangum told the North Carolina Attorney General's representative(s) that she was raped while levitating (it fit so nicely with North Carolina's decision not to prosecute her, on mental illness grounds), even The New York Times and Durham's Herald-Sun had to abandon hope of convincing fair-minded people that Ms. Mangum actually was kidnapped, raped or sexually assaulted by ANY member of the 2005-2006 Duke University Men's Lacrosse Team and teammates conspired to cover up heinous crimes.
The pathetic political correctness extremists have been reduced to babbling about "higher truths" and how they might have been right, because the team members really were the kind to have done that of which they were falsely accused and for which they were long persecuted under the guise of prosecution.
They dare not apologize, because that would suggest that their philosophy is fundamentally flawed. So they try to minimize their monumental mistakes by maximizing the mistakes of the team members (whether or not they even attended the foolish party).
The petty theft possibility is something they can use to discredit not only a petty thief, but the team. That would be another wrong.
North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper finally got around (after Easter 2007) to declaring the three wrongly indicted players--Reade Seligmann, Collin Finnerty and David Evans--innocent of all three felony charges, while passing on criminal prosecution of Ms. Mangum with the blessing of fellow Democrat (and Finnerty attorney) Wade Smith.
Since the Attorney General does not appear to be pursuing the petty theft possibility as well as not prosecuting Ms. Mangum, the question, why not?, arises.
As to not prosecuting Ms. Mangum, it's called prosecutorial discretion (and not provoking the Democrats' black base).
As to not pursuing possible petty theft, perhaps the Attorney General decided that even if there was a petty theft, the petty thief has wrongly suffered so much that pursuing would not be in the interests of justice.
That's the best way to look at it.
But, until Mr. Nifong's enablers are thoroughly investigated, it's not the only way to look at it.
Punishing disgraced Durham County, North Carolina District Attorney Michael B. Nifong is NOT enough. He had enablers. If North Carolina does not act, there should be a thorough federal investigation, not a pass for Ms. Mangum and Mr. Nifong's other enablers.
If that doesn't happen because a petty thief or two is getting a pass, that's another travesty of justice.
Anne K. Ream, a Chicago-based writer and founder of The Voices and Faces Project (which describes itself as "a non-profit national survivor network created to give voice and face to survivors of sexual violence, offering a sense of solidarity and possibility to those who have lived through abuse, while raising awareness of how this human rights and public health issue impacts victims, families and communities") is trying to minimize the horrendous mistake of the rush-to-judgment political correctness crowd by using a broad brush to paint the teammates (and she's NOT whitewashing).
"The young men who narrowly lost to rival Johns Hopkins in the NCAA championship game are indeed gifted and resilient athletes. But praising the players as 'outstanding' and 'upstanding' young men, as the Duke Lacrosse Booster Club did in a full-page advertisement in The New York Times, is a reminder of just how low the bar has fallen when it comes to acceptable male behavior. Legal vindication is not moral vindication, no matter how hard a PR campaign works to make it so.
"We may never know everything that occurred on the night of March 13, 2006, when the Duke lacrosse players threw a team party at an off-campus house. But what we do know is troubling enough.
"Photos taken at the party show two young women, hired to perform by the players, dancing at the center of a group of largely drunken and leering men. The North Carolina attorney general's report details how one of the lacrosse players held up a broomstick during the night's events, suggesting that the women use it as a 'sex toy.' Another player sent a chilling group e-mail just hours after the party, musing about bringing in more 'strippers' and cutting off their skin while ejaculating. Witnesses reported hearing racial slurs lobbed by partygoers.
"To be fair, individual acts do not implicate the entire lacrosse team. Misogyny is not illegal. And none of these ugly events constitutes a criminal act. But they stand as a testimony all their own, a window into a world where 'good' men engage in troubling -- and sometimes troubled -- behavior.
"The statement that 'boys will be boys' has become an all-purpose justification for male behavior that is boorish, bad and at times even brutal. The degradation of women has been normalized for so long that it seems we have ceased to see what is right before our eyes.
"Yet the words and images that came from the residence of the captains of the Duke lacrosse team demand to be addressed, as does the prosecutor's possibly criminal mishandling of the case. They speak volumes about the climate in the players' house. So what does our silence in the face of these truths say about us?
"We talk endlessly, exhaustingly, about 'moral values.' But we talk little of valuing women, particularly when they are young, poor and black, as were the women hired by the Duke lacrosse players. Nowhere was this more apparent than at the news conference two months ago when North Carolina Atty. Gen. Roy Cooper dismissed all charges against the players, taking the opportunity to muse about the mental stability of the young woman at the heart of the case. Later that week, when the mother of one of the lacrosse players appeared on 'Good Morning America' and insinuated that the accuser ought to lose her children, she left little doubt about who was being tried in the court of public opinion.
"Every public rape case exists in two spaces: In the practical, 'law and order' world, where it works its way through an imperfect system; and in the public imagination, where it exists symbolically, a Rorschach test of our values and beliefs. It is not only the specifics, but also the symbolism, of the Duke case that remain troubling. Both serve to remind those who come forward with rape charges that they may pay a steep and very public price for the chance to be heard.
"Millions of rape victims, most of whom never report the crime -- much less see legal justice -- must have watched silently as this case unfolded, thinking about how they might have fared under such scrutiny. That the accuser gave conflicting statements to the police is not unusual. A victim's statements, particularly in the wake of a traumatic attack, can be confused and inconsistent. Memory is resolutely imperfect over time and under the duress of repeated questioning.
"Our cultural response to rape leaves its victims in the cruelest of double binds: They must choose between coming forward, which carries the risk of being blamed, and remaining silent, which carries the risk of isolation. It is a silence that damages more than the victim. It strikes a blow to our public safety as well, because unreported sexual violence allows perpetrators to violate again.
"The myth of the 'false report' of rape must be replaced by this truth: It is underreporting, not false reporting, that poses the greatest risk to our families and our communities. It is silence that is the enemy of change."
Unfortunately, Ms. Mangum's rape report was real, not a myth, and false, not factual.
The truth is that rapists AND false reporters should be prosecuted; Democrat racial politics should not corrupt the criminal justice system; the whole truth should be known; and confidential settlements will not promote justice or reform.
The truth also is that "individual acts do not implicate the entire lacrosse team," as Ms. Ream put it. The team had 47 members, each an individual. But all 47 team members were implicated, either as suspected rapists or aiders and abetters, by Ms. Mangum and a corrupt district attorney willing to do that in order to pander to the critical black vote that saved his job (temporarily) by making him the winner of a three-way Democrat primary in which he was the white male, the favorite was a white female and the third candidate was a black man who would have gotten more black votes if Mr. Nifong had not become "a minister of injustice" masquerading as the protector of black women from well-to-do to wealthy white rapists.
Ms. Ream was answered, powerfully, by Hero of the Hoax Kathleen Eckelt, a registered nurse and a state certified Forensic Nurse Examiner with over 30 years of varied clinical experiences, combining staff, agency, and float pool positions, enhanced with paralegal, forensic, fraud examiner, sexual assault, and medicolegal death investigation training.
"The opinion piece...by Ms. Ream, posted on the SATI (Sexual Assault Training Institute) website, is absolutely outrageous!
"When are the undeserved slurs of these innocent players going to stop?
"These three Lacrosse players were determined by the NC Attorney General to be, not just Not Guilty, but totally, completely, absolutely, without question, INNOCENT!
"In my opinion, what this woman is doing, and others like her, is reprehensible. These young men, who have shown nothing but class and dignity this past year, standing strong in the face of a racist community, out for blood, have enough to do to try to repair the extreme harm that was done to them.
"They don't need this kind of vindictive, hateful trash being strewn about on the web.
"And I'm surprised that it's even printed on, what is supposed to be, a professional website. Is that supposed to imply that all of us who are involved in treating victims of sexual assault agree with this woman? Well, I can tell you right now, we don't.
"Furthermore, I can tell you that among my colleagues and I, who have discussed this quite frequently, we not only disagree, but are down right disgusted by this whole fiasco.
"Just because we may care for true victims of sexual assault, does not mean we automatically believe that no accuser would ever lie, or that all accused are guilty.
"That is not the way our criminal justice system is supposed to work. And it certainly is not the way of the real world.
"Ream: 'But praising the players as 'outstanding' and 'upstanding' young men, as the Duke Lacrosse Booster Club did in a full-page advertisement in The New York Times, is a reminder of just how low the bar has fallen when it comes to acceptable male behavior. Legal vindication is not moral vindication, no matter how hard a PR campaign works to make it so.'
"Why has the bar fallen so low? Because some college kids had a party? Did a little drinking? Hired two ... ugh ... to put it nicely, 'exotic dancers'?
"Not that I advocate this behavior, but it's not the worst I've ever seen. In fact, almost any parent who has managed to live through their child's teenage years would probably think it's pretty mild in comparison to some of the things they've seen.
"Please don't even try to tell me that those now sitting on their pedestals, looking down their high and mighty noses at the Duke Lacrosse boys, have never done anything like that when they were young.
"I've lived too long in this world, and seen too many things, to ever believe something like that.
"Moral vindication? I think it's Dave Evans, Reade Seligmann, and Collin Finnerty who are the ones who have been morally vindicated in all this mess.
"What kind of moral vindication, Ms. Ream, are you looking for? For whom? A couple of hookers trying to scam some college kids?
"A delusional drug addict out to get a high pay off from some rich white boys?
"A corrupt DA intent on increasing his pension through re-election? Which one, Ms. Ream?
"Are you trying to imply that, by hiring a couple of ... ugh ...'exotic dancers', these young guys were all morally corrupt?
"Well, let me tell you, on the way back from a forensic conference the other day, I passed a huge billboard.
"Want to take a guess at what was being advertised on that huge billboard, sitting right out there for all the families passing by to see? Exotic Dancers!
"Now just who do you think paid for that big billboard advertising? Duke Lacrosse players? Or some morally corrupt corporation with tons of money in their pockets?
"Shoot, they probably even donate money to one of your favorite charity funds Ms. Ream!
"Ream: 'We may never know everything that occurred on the night of March 13, 2006, when the Duke lacrosse players threw a team party at an off-campus house'
"Evidently Ms. Ream hasn't been following the news too well. In case she's unaware, we do know exactly what went on at that off-campus party.
"Two ... ugh ...'exotic dancers' tried to rip off some college kids.
"They got into a verbal confrontation, the kids tried to get them to leave, and CGM decided to get even, score a few drugs, and get herself a big pay off in the process.
"Some people should actually try keeping up with the news sometime.
"Ream: 'Photos taken at the party show two young women, hired to perform by the players, dancing at the center of a group of largely drunken and leering men.'
"Well, either Ms. Ream's vision is screwy or mine is. I saw those photos and I didn't see any drunken, leering men.
"What I did see, were a bunch of bored guys, looking about as disgusted as I felt seeing those two women.
"Women who, in my opinion, were the ones who were morally corrupt.
"Ream: 'The North Carolina attorney general's report details how one of the lacrosse players held up a broomstick during the night's events, suggesting that the women use it as a "sex toy."'
"Even the dumbest of the dumb could recognize this was meant to be a joke!
"Ream: 'Another player sent a chilling group e-mail just hours after the party, musing about bringing in more 'strippers' and cutting off their skin while ejaculating.'
"After all this time, knowing what we all know about the real meaning of that e-mail, and where it came from - a required student reading at that - for Ms. Ream to still be spouting such malicious nonsense is unconscionable.
"Her very apparent agenda makes us all look bad.
"I would rather quit this field than to ever go through my career (or life) with such a closed, prejudicial mind, and such a hate-filled heart. Shame on her!"
Don't quit, Kathleen! Like Emma Peel of "The Avengers," you're needed.
I never did "anything like that" period, Kathleen. I've been calling the two women who came strippers instead of exotic dancers in April of 2006 and I blame those who hire prostitutes or strippers for hiring them as well as prostitutes and strippers for agreeing to be hired. But hiring a stripper is not the same as raping or sexually assaulting one, and stripping and hiring strippers is legal in North Carolina and something done by other Duke sports teams, female as well as male, I learned, as well as by college students, athletes or not, around the country, so the greater fault lies with a society that not only tolerates, but encourages, that sort of a party and selective persecution is wrong.
The players quickly and sincerely apologized, which puts them way ahead of others, like Duke University President Richard Brodhead and 87 of the members of the Group of 88.
That said, the whole truth should be known: none of the 47 is a felon, convicted or convicted; a few do have reason to regret more than the poor judgment of attending a stripper party; and, as a group, these fellows are more impressive than their average peers, albeit not perfect, and they conducted themselves magnificently when they were victimized by a false accuser, a rogue prosecutor, a flawed criminal justice system, the bulk of the mainstream media and political correctness extremists generally.
Duke's men's lacrosse team had an unworthy tradition of visiting a "gentlemen's club" during spring break.
In 2006, three co-captains (David Evans, Dan Flannery and Matt Zash) hosted a party at the off-campus house they rented. Since not all team members were at least twenty-one and therefore not eligible to go to the "gentlemen's club" (I hate these euphemisms!), it was decided to invite two strippers. A really bad decision.
But the notion that blacks were chosen in order to humiliate and abuse them is absurd and the co-captains' statements show that.
One co-captain who obviously had no experience hiring strippers (and hopefully never will repeat the mistake), but who knew how to use a computer, went online, started with "A" and called "Allure," without knowing anything more about it than its telephone number. He asked for whites and was offered a white and a Hispanic. Ironically, neither of the two who came is either.
When I first read the statement of the co-captain who did the ordering (last year), I had four impressions: (1) he's not a criminal, (2) he should not have been the "go-to guy" when it came to ordering strippers, (3) he needed a course in choosing aliases (he used Daniel Flanigan instead of Daniel Flannery when he called) and (4) he really tried his best to calm things down after teammate Peter Lamade started things on a downward spiral by asking the second stripper a crude question and then suggested an improper use for a broomstick after she responded by insulting his manhood. (I've listened to the explanations that Peter was merely joking or exchanging insults. His suggestion probably was one he would only have made to a stripper who had insulted him first, but he really should have been above that and realized that putting himself on that stripper's level was...putting himself on that stripper's level!)
To be sure, Dan Flannery regrets his role in the fiasco as the one who arranged for the strippers. Dan wrote in his statement, "We all believed we got scammed." But Dan had no interest in a "private dance" and tried to calm the waters. It was not surprising to read that he "gave...
extra $100 to get them out and pay them."
Lesson: When "scammed" by strippers, let it go. Treat it as a learning experience. It's the price for not staying away from strippers.
I doubt that Peter or anyone else ever scared either stripper, but the statements showed that team members were scared.
Matt Zash: "One of the strippers [the false accuser] bangs on the door repeatedly asking to come back in. She continues to do so for about a minute when I call Dave's cell phone and tell him to go to the backyard and make her stop because she is going to break the door. I suggested calling the police."
Dan: "Matty Zash and I moved our cars around the block...because we were afraid they might come back and damage our cars."
David Evans: "The hispanic girl was in her drivers side seat, while the black girl was circling the car yellinjg. Her boobs were exposed and I thought that we were going to get a noise violation and that she was going to get a 'public nudity' charge."
David Evans: "Ryan McFayden said that he wanted to take the money from the black girl's purse. I told him he was stupid coz [because] the girl had a driver who prob[ably] had a gun, and would kill us."
David's written statement is NOT comparable to his magnificent public statement after his indictment, but it apparently was done without benefit of parental and/or legal counsel, due to horrendous Duke advice.
As stated, David began his statement by stating that Dan had ordered the strippers and then identified himself as the fellow who "collected $25 per player who came and had the money to pay the strippers." In his list of party attendees, he referred to the party as "my party" as well as identified teammates Devon Sherwood as "only black kid," Ryan McFayden as saying "he wanted to take money," Peter Lamade as the broomstick remark maker and having given money and Kevin Mayer as "passed out."
David added that after the two strippers stopped performing (right after the broomstick remark), HE "was demanding our money back, because it appeared they were hustling us"; he "went back to the room with the guys and they wanted our money back"; "[t]he black girl was going around barefoot [outside], with her purse and dress inside"; he "kept being asked did we get the money back because we got 'hustled'; "Ryan McFayden said that he wanted to take the money from the black girl's purse"; he told Ryan that Ryan "was stupid"; he "went to the living room and said the girls wouldn't leave. It was then that Peter Lamade said he had their money. I don't know if Ryan or him took the money, but I yelled and reiterated the bodyguard message and how the cops were going to come and that we needed them out."
I doubt that Duke President Richard Brodhead had in mind a disgruntled team member feeling cheated and taking money from a stripper's purse when he said "something happened" and it was "bad enough" to justify his own actions as Duke's president. Even if it happened, it did not justify what Mr. Brodhead did to the whole team.
David's statement not only suggests that taking, but also identifies two possible takers. David wrote: "I went to the living room and said the girls wouldn't leave. It was then that Peter Lamade said he had their money. I don't know if Ryan or him took the money, but I yelled and reiterated the bodyguard message and how the cops were going to come and that we needed them out."
At most, there might have been petty theft, nothing physical, much less sexual. But Mr. Nifong could not have won that primary by investigating a couple of team members who thought they had been scammed or hustled for petty theft.
As a fair and objective minister of justice would have "followed the money," but Mr. Nifong was not one and he needed something sensational.
"I took the money to Dan and told him to give it back and get them out.
"[Dan later said he gave $100 for them to open the door.]
Dave wrote that after the strippers finally left, "Danny gave me $260 that he still had from what was taken" and Dave gave him "a $100 bill because he had paid extra."
Dave added: "He [Dan] won a $100 game of beer pong. I put the $160 in my desk, and the next day put it on our living room table."
Did the North Carolina Attorney General's office heed the admonition to follow the money?
Was that much desired and deserved declaration of innocence of the felony charges a unilateral act or part of an understanding?
One more point generally in the players' favor: Matt Zash's written statement mentions another's provoked statement of a racial nature, but it also suggests that the players are hardly racist: "At approximately 11:20 the first stripper showed up. She was black or latino/black. Dave announced this to all that were at the party, and nobody seemed to care."
Matt was NOT for having strippers or much interested in their performance. He chaired his room shut and sat on his computer inside Dan's room, watching from there for "approximately 3 minutes" before going to his room (with others) to watch David Letterman's show. He wrote: "I never had any verbal contact, nor was I ever in the same room with either of the strippers." He also noted that after the two locked themselves in a bathroom (the "green tiled" one), he "voice[d] [his] opinion saying 'just get them out of here who cares at this point."
Matt also explained what provoked the second stripper to call the police: "I heard from someone that was in front of my house that words were exchanged between the woman in the driver's seat and the kids spilling onto East Campus. One of the kids said to the stripper: 'Well, we asked for whites, not niggers.' The woman then said, 'that's a hate crime. I'm calling the police.' This happened around 12:30 AM (Tuesday)."
Unlike David, who identified Peter Lamade as the one who made the broomstick remark, Matt identified the person who made it as "Person A."
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 www.MichNews.com, www.RenewAmerica.com, www.WebCommentary.com, www.PostChronicle.com and www.therealitycheck.org 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.