Monday, June 26, 2006

Duke lacrosse: The News and Observer is still covering for Nifong.

Last week the Raleigh News and Observer ran an odd little story about the latest skirmish in the Duke lacrosse mockery of justice.

Lawyer says investigator ignored evidence

DURHAM -- A lawyer for an indicted Duke University lacrosse player fired off a letter today to an investigator for the Durham prosecutor's office, saying that the investigator must not have read the state's rape case file.

After a Thursday court appearance, Joseph B. Cheshire V, a lawyer for player Dave Evans, told reporters that a new batch of evidence contains a police report in which a woman who said she was raped at a team party told police she had been attacked by five men, and not three as authorities have said. Linwood Wilson, who coordinates the prosecutor's worthless check program and works as an investigator, interrupted Cheshire and asked to see the specific document that supports Cheshire's claims.

Today, Cheshire faxed a letter and page 1,304 of the discovery to Wilson.

"Since you are the District Attorney's Investigator, the press could have assumed -- falsely, as it turns out -- that you had actually read your file," Cheshire wrote
Careful readers of the N&O might understand the context of Cheshire's actions because the paper carried a story about the lawyer's press conference and Wilson's "question".

Defense gets load of new evidence

Defense lawyers have declined News & Observer requests for copies of the evidence, and Cheshire did not make them available Thursday. An investigator in Nifong's office called into question Cheshire's claims Thursday.

When Cheshire told reporters that the woman claimed five people attacked her, investigator Linwood Wilson asked Cheshire to show him that page in the evidence.

"You're welcome to come get it," Cheshire said.

"Yeah, I'd love to see it," Wilson said.

Wilson walked away, and Cheshire continued talking with reporters
Anyone who relies only on the News and Observer, however, is left in the dark about the nature of the exchange between Wilson and Cheshire and. Nor will they realize that Cheshire delivered another devastating blow to DA Nifong's case.

This story from WTVD provides more details on what happened outside the courthouse.

Attorneys Dispute Report in Duke Rape Case

A bitter exchange that started outside of the courtroom when Linwood Wilson, an investigator for the District Attorney's Office, interrupted a press conference by defense attorney, Joseph Cheshire.

The interruption came as Cheshire was referencing the discovery documents that indicate the accuser gave conflicting accounts of the alleged rape.

In affidavits filed by police, authorities said the accuser told police she was raped by three men at the March 13 team party where she was hired to perform as an exotic dancer with a second woman. District Attorney Mike Nifong won indictments against three players and has said they were the only ones implicated by the evidence.

After the exchange, Wilson told Eyewitness News that he personally read all 1814 pages of discovery documents and has not read that the alleged victim changed her version of the story.

Friday morning, Cheshire, who represents charged player David Evans, provided proof
So let's see what the N&O left out:

Nifong's investigator crashed the defense press conference and interrupted Cheshire.

That investigator lied to the press when he said he had read the whole file and that the accuser never changed her story.

The N&O also buried another critical piece of information: the accuser once claimed that there were four dancers at the lax house that night. That bombshell gets only a passing mention at the bottom of the

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