Monday, May 15, 2006

The Mystery of Duke

The last month or two has seen both Duke Cunningham and several Duke lacrosse players indicted for felony acts. Not a good time to be a Duke. Thankfully "The Duke" himself isn't alive today or we'd probably have a trifecta capped with accusations of his questionable sexuality.

But one of these puzzle pieces has me stumped - and that point is driven even further home with today's indictment of a third Duke lacrosse player in the supposed beating and rape of a young black stripper. Sorry, I'm not going to say "exotic dancer" because, well, let's get real - she's a stripper. We're not talking belly dancing or flamingo dancing here - we're talking pole dancing, in the nude, for horny 19-23 year old guys. It is what it is.

But before everyone gets up in arms that I'm about to make light of a woman's rape based on her profession, or insinuating that she somehow deserves being raped, let me stop you right there and say unequivocally: "Nope, that's not the case - so don't even get started on that tangent."

So, why do I bring up the whole stripper thing then? Simple - the fact that she's being portrayed as a "dancer" in the media is indicative of the fact that presentations here are already being manipulated and the truth may be farther away from the "story" than we think.

Yes the Duke lacrosse team proved they are an idiotic group of immature males on many levels, not the least of which was having strippers come to perform for their party. Yeah, well that fits a large majority of the male collegiate population. That in itself is poor judgment, but not criminal behavior. And that alone does not make them rapists.

Nor does the simple accusation of rape.

And yet, they have been convicted in the court of the media and public opinion of the crime of being rich arrogant prejudiced spoiled kids who could easily perpetrate this heinous crime on a struggling underprivileged yet talented young dancer for whom they obviously had both class and race disdain.

But wait - these kids aren't all rich kids. And the accuser isn't Miss America or a talented artist. These are college kids and (according to reports) a drunk or high stripper.

And... something's wrong in Denmark here.

The facts simply don't gel - four key facts in particular. For a beating and a rape, there are apparently no signs of a beating and a rape, with the exception of semen found inside the accuser. But the male DNA found inside the accuser (determined to be recently deposited) was not the DNA of ANY team member of the lacrosse team - and they were all tested not once, but twice.

Secondly, photos of the evening show date stamps which do not validate the accuser's claims. And, while time/date stamps can be altered on digital cameras, they generally would need to be altered "prior" to actually taking the photos. So this whole thing would have had to be a concerted planned conspiracy from the start.

Thirdly, one of those indicted was even photographed at an ATM machine (by the ATM camera) miles away at the same time the accuser says he was brutalizing her.

And fourthly, we have what appears to be (on record) a previous false rape accusation by this same accuser several years ago. While that doesn't prove anything, it is important in light of all the existing physical evidence - which points to the fact that there was in fact no rape at the hands of the Duke lacrosse team.

And that is what leaves the biggest mystery of all: Just what evidence does the Prosecutor have that no one else seems to have any knowledge of? What evidence is there that now, with round two of DNA results coming back negative, he indicts a third person for a rape no one seems able to prove happened?

Remember that the police arrived on the scene after the other dancer called 911 (due to racial epithets being exchanged), so it's not like this all took place days apart and evidence of a rape may have passed.

So, what are we missing here? Will some earth-breaking information be revealed by the prosecution? Or will this truly be a case of he-said/she-said? Best speculation says it will be the latter.

So, should we allow people to be tried and convicted in the media before anything has been proven, based solely on the accusations of a single person? We've already seen the University take its hits, as have the individuals accused. Is this justified?

The bottom line is of course that all accusations should be taken seriously - but the rights and names of the accused should not be permanently tarnished based solely on the accusation. It's a difficult balancing act to be sure.

But if the media convicts an accused individual, and if cases like this turn out to be a case of fraudulent accusations, this does nothing but grave harm to the future plight of women who truly have been raped or victimized.

It should be quite interesting to see how this case plays out. Let's just hope, in the end, the truth and the victim(s) become known.



At 3:02 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nothing you've said is accurate. The requirements for a criminal case are definitely met. The accused had motive, means and opportunity.

There is also factual evidence of a rape:

• A forensic exam found injuries consistent with sexual abuse.

* The alleged victim had bruises and scrapes consistent with physical abuse according to both medical personnel and police.

• The alleged victim identified the suspects by photograph without prompting.

• DNA evidence found under a false fingernail has been linked to the very same suspect the alleged victim previously identified with 90 percent accuracy.

Meanwhile, it appears that the defense has not only engaged in a smear campaign, but may have falsified evidence. The alleged photos of the victim leaving the party reportedly depict the wrong car. Someone may have altered the time stamp on photos of the dancers arriving to claim they were leaving. Of more significance is the fact that defense has made up its own timeline, which appears to be significantly later than what the other witnesses will testify to. With an earlier timeline, the other so-called defense evidence can well have occurred after the alleged rape. Based on my experience, I don't think much of the scuttlebutt the defense has used to smear the alleged victim will even be offered as evidence because it is either not reliable, or false.

Some of what you've said is just plain lying. For example, the fact the victim did not press for prosecution in the earlier rape allegations does not mean she made them up. She would have been a frightened teen at the time and had waited years before reporting the alleged crime at all. Those factors would explain why the case was not developed.

The Duke rape allegations are a triable and a winnable case.

Obviously, your over identification with the suspects has blinded you to the facts. Like many Americans, you believe that 'white is right,' and that means it is just fine to dehumanize the victim as you have done in this entry. Some people want to claim that racism ended decades ago. But, people like you prove them wrong every day.

At 8:12 AM, Blogger N.J. said...

Wow - "nothing" I've said is accurate? Funny... Everything I've said is published information and not my own opinion - but i guess it's all lies.

You say I'm predisposed? It sounds just the opposite to me. I didn't say anyone was innocent or guilty (only you have done that) - I said I'm eagerly awaiting the release of the evidence that contradicts the existing evidence.

Evidence of a sexual assualt? Maybe, but the semen found wasn't from anyone on the Lacrosse team - that seems to indicate a false accusation and would need significant evidence to overturn. She identified the players from a photograph of ONLY them, not a correct lineup. The fingernail found was in the bathroom garbage can (and was volunteered to Police from the men in the house) where was lots of DN from the people who lived in the house. And, somehow a fleck of skin on a discarded false fingernail somehow outweighs semen in a rape case? The accuser had cuts and bruises that were also consistent with falling off the back porch and down the back steps - which she is photographed having done.

I think I addressed the time stamp issue. You can change the time stamp on a camera, but it won't change the time on photographs already taken - you'd have to have planned this in advance.

And, by relaying information about previousl allegations I am not "lying". And, if I'm not mistaken, this information was even given to the press by the accuser's own father.

Oh and lastly, yes, please show your true colors with the idiotic "white is right" comment. First of all, I didn't bring race into this at all - because race doesn't matter here, so don't try to cloud it up. Second, couldn't you be more creative than to steal Chris Rock's shtick?

Sorry, there's nothing in my article that even hints at racism - with the exception of course of your idiotic and racist comment.

This case is about serious accusations of rape, and about evidence surrounding those accusations. If there was an assualt or a rape, then those who were responsible should be punished severely. But... If there was not, then the accuser should also be punished.

I have not made my mind up as to who is guilty - because the evidence doesn't clearly point to an answer. You unfortunately have made up your closed mind that the accused are guilty simply because they are white.

To quote your own words: Some people want to claim that racism ended decades ago. But, people like you prove them wrong every day.

At 8:25 AM, Blogger N.J. said...

Oh, by the way... some interesting reads about you Mac Diva (or is that JadeGold?):

Wow - looks like everyone else thinks you're the racist too.

Keep up the good work ;-)


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