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Rape Accusation Has Ruined Lives, Students


__Kratos__

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In their first news interviews, three former Duke University students told the CBS News program “60 Minutes” that they were falsely accused of raping a woman hired to dance at a lacrosse team party last March.

One of the men has graduated from Duke, while the other two, who were sophomores, have been suspended from the university pending the outcome of the case, they said on the program, which was shown yesterday. They are free on $100,000 bail while awaiting a trial expected to start next spring.

“This woman has destroyed everything I worked for in my life,” said the student who graduated, David F. Evans, 23, of Annapolis, Md. “And, worst of all, she’s split apart a community and a nation on facts that just didn’t happen and a lie that should have never been told.”

Also appearing on the show was James E. Coleman Jr., a professor at Duke’s law school who criticized the prosecutor in the case and accused him of misconduct. Mr. Coleman, who led a university review of the men’s lacrosse program after the party, said of Michael B. Nifong, the Durham County district attorney, “I think in this case, it appears that this prosecutor has set out to develop whatever evidence he could to convict people he already concluded were guilty.”

In June, Mr. Coleman said Mr. Nifong should ask the state attorney general to appoint a special prosecutor and remove himself from the case. Mr. Coleman said Mr. Nifong “pandered to the community” and set up an improper photo lineup to identify suspects.

In a telephone interview last night, Mr. Coleman said, “He has forgotten about his obligation to protect the innocent, and in my view, that’s prosecutorial misconduct.”

Mr. Nifong did not return telephone calls and e-mail messages yesterday. The accuser, a student at North Carolina Central University, could not be contacted.

Mr. Nifong has said that he, the police and the woman are determined to take the case to trial despite a tide of criticism. Mr. Nifong has said that there is medical evidence of rape and that the woman made valid identifications of the suspects, both points challenged by “60 Minutes” after what the show said was a review of nearly the entire case file.

Mr. Evans, the team captain, told “60 Minutes” that he regretted his decision to give a party with alcohol and hire strippers.

“I was naïve, I was young, I was sheltered,” he said. “And I made a terrible judgment. In five months I’ve learned more than I did in 22 years about life.”

One of the suspended students, Reade W. Seligmann, 20, of Essex Fells, N.J., said the police had never interviewed him about the case. He also said the district attorney did not want to see evidence proving he left the event shortly after the dancing stopped and before the alleged rape could have occurred.

The other suspended student, Collin Finnerty, 20, of Garden City, N.Y., said he also had evidence showing he left the party early, but did not want to reveal it before trial. He said he left the party after the women stopped dancing and never saw them again.

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I still can't believe this case is going forward anymore then it is with the lack of evidence, damning timelines, the other stripper speaking out, witnesses, and the DA admitting mistakes.

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If there isn't enough evidence, what does the woman and her lawyer hope to gain by all this?

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If there isn't enough evidence, what does the woman and her lawyer hope to gain by all this?

Money and support. Her college has already been paid off, donations have come in and groups including the Black Panthers have some to town in support. If anything it's a lot like the Tawana Brawley case that turned out to be false and her family got over 300k in cash.

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sad abuse of the legal system... I hope the students sue the pants off these people

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The state needs to be sued in punishment to prevent this kind of tradgedy from happening again.

There is little difference between this and a lynching, except the victims are still alive.

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I can't feel sorry for them, as even if they are innocent, which is still debatable, they were morons for holding the party in the first place, maybe they'll learn a lesson for the future :tu::yes:

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sad abuse of the legal system... I hope the students sue the pants off these people

Hopefully so... The sueing I mean.

I can't feel sorry for them, as even if they are innocent, which is still debatable, they were morons for holding the party in the first place, maybe they'll learn a lesson for the future :tu::yes:

So having a party in your early 20's is wrong? Not a big enough of a deal to have your life turned upside down and ruined by lies from an attention seeker. :hmm:

That's like me running up to you and shooting you in the thigh with a 12 gauge for jay walking.

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I hope her soul goes to hell for what she has done to them.

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Hopefully so... The sueing I mean.

So having a party in your early 20's is wrong? Not a big enough of a deal to have your life turned upside down and ruined by lies from an attention seeker. :hmm:

I never said wrong, I said stupid, if they wanted a party with strippers then go to a strip club, or leave the alcohol out of it, they were just asking for trouble the way they did it :yes:

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they were just asking for trouble the way they did it :yes:

What they did was totally legal. Doing something that is legal is not asking for another to commit a crime. I think stripping is little better than prostitution and should be illegal, but my opinion is not the law.

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I never said wrong, I said stupid, if they wanted a party with strippers then go to a strip club, or leave the alcohol out of it, they were just asking for trouble the way they did it :yes:

Most of what they did was legal, cept for the one guy that was on probation but he got in trouble for it.

It's not asking for trouble to have a party with booze and strippers. If doing something legal is asking for trouble, that's messed up.

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the problem is that this case has turned into a political football .

he should drop the case most likely --but he don't want to look like a goofball.

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I think stripping is little better than prostitution and should be illegal, but my opinion is not the law.

whoa whoa *rubs eyes* no no no, take that back lol!

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Most of what they did was legal, cept for the one guy that was on probation but he got in trouble for it.

It's not asking for trouble to have a party with booze and strippers. If doing something legal is asking for trouble, that's messed up.

Legality and intelligence of an action are not the same thing, something can be perfectly legal and still be a stupid thing to do, it may be messed up, but that's life

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So your saying because they threw a party, just like every other college household does on a weekly basis, they deserve to have thier lives ruined for some crack whore to get her school paid for by racist black activists?

I would really like to hear your reasoning or lack thereof on this.

Yes, it might have been stupid to hire an ugly stripper, but not something for which 19 or so guys and the former Duke lacrosse coach should have to pay for the rest of thier lives. They did nothing wrong.

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