Patterico's Pontifications

12/28/2006

Bar Seeks Charges Against Nifong

Filed under: Crime,Current Events,Law,Scum — Patterico @ 5:46 pm

The North Carolina bar is pursuing ethics charges against Nifong.

Good. This will help drive home the point that behavior like his is not the norm for prosecutors.

(Link via David E.)

29 Responses to “Bar Seeks Charges Against Nifong”

  1. Couldn’t have happened to better guy

    Capitalist Infidel (fffac6)

  2. A question for all you lawyers (especially those of you who may be familiar with North Carolina law): Could Nifong be criminally and/or civilly liable in this matter, or would the matter likely end with his disbarment? Could the city or county be forced to make restitution to the accused? All this, of course, depending on how the matter is resolved.

    JVW (255a81)

  3. The only possible negative is the tendency for him to dig in and pursue the case as long as he can, now. If he moves to dismiss it now, he validates the complaint. I do hope the kids get a judgement against him personally and against the community that encouraged this behavior. A big judgement

    Mike K (416363)

  4. JVW,

    K C Johnson has posted his thoughts on this ethics charge and how it might affect the Duke case. I don’t know what remedies might be available under NC law but there may be federal remedies available to the defendants.

    In general, governmental entities like cities, counties and their employees have immunity from prosecution but there are exceptions. Here is a link to an article that discusses this subject in the context of a California prosecutorial misconduct case. I don’t have any special knowledge about this article or about the case discussed in the article, nor am I an expert on the law is in this area. However, I hope this article will be a helpful starting point to consider some of the legal issues in this area.

    DRJ (51a774)

  5. I thought this part was interesting:

    In a statement, the bar said it opened a case against Nifong in March 30, a little more than two weeks after the party…

    So, the whole time we were wondering if the NC Bar would step up to the plate, they had already stepped up to the plate? If true, it also means they started their investigation into his actions before he withheld the DNA evidence, right? Timeline, anyone?

    jinnmabe (517b2c)

  6. Re: the second link I provided in comment #4, the 9th Circuit granted immunity to the supervising prosecutors in that case but let stand the plaintiff’s claims again the specific ADA and investigator who handled his case. Apparently the US Supreme Court denied cert on appeal.

    This case may provide a basis to argue that Nifong and others directly involved in wrongdoing may not be shielded by immunity. However, at first glance, it also supports the argument that the city and county can successfully claim immunity.

    DRJ (51a774)

  7. I’ve taught at both Duke and North Carolina Central Universities. I don’t remember the anomosity in the community between the two schools. Maybe things have changed over the past twenty years. If so, it’s sad. Duke is a tremendous school and the students I taught at NCCU were dedicated to bettering their lives and their families’ lives. Durham was a wonderful place to live. I guess things change. A real pity.

    With luck the judge in this case will throw the remaining charges out and end this travesty. I can’t believe he didn’t do so when the DA and the head of the independent DNA lab admitted hiding the results of the test. Shouldn’t that have been enough to completely destroy the credibility of the case?

    Bill M (b7df02)

  8. Justice is on its way.

    rightisright (16ece0)

  9. Or maybe it means the North Carolina bar just wants in on the publicity…

    Neville Chamberlain (80a4fa)

  10. Nifong’s not the first nor last belligerent and abusive prosecutor. When cops abuse their powers, they’re prosecuted and/or fired. Prosecutors who abuse their powers are almost never challenged – and when they are, it’s only because their conduct offends or embarrasses other lawyers. And lawyers must do something really really REALLLLLY bad to offend other lawyers.

    And since “good lawyers” ferret bad cops, maybe it’s time that a body of “good cops” start ferreting out sleazy lawyers. One can grow old waiting for lawyers to police themselves. Nifong’s arrogance shows how far he thinks his peers will let him go – and how far a bad prosecutor can go before the Bar notices.

    He’s an ugly and pathetic little man.

    Clark Baker
    LAPD, retired

    Clark Baker (337440)

  11. Is it coincidental that the North Carolina Bar Association does this, just days after a Congressman calls for federal intervention?

    davod (5fdaa2)

  12. I live in Raleigh, NC so I’ve had local coverage since thie whole thing happened. I’ve been appalled that it’s taken this long for the media to finally start turning on Nifong. Every bit of information about the case that came out since the initial accusation (that I heard, anyway) made the dancer look like a liar.

    I was surprised the case even made it through grand jury, but I suppose when you’re dealing with sexual assault/rape charges, the testimony of the accuser alone will usually be enough to go to trial.

    My theory is that the dancer was expecting the rich families of the Duke players to pay her to drop the charges, a la the Kobe Bryant ordeal.

    Justin (747191)

  13. A question or two:

    Where do these men go to get their reputations and lives back?

    What strategic moment in this Nifong complaint cycle do Jesse and Al ™ bring their traveling white-privilege show to town?

    When will one of the complainant’s homies decide to try busting a cap on one of the accused?

    the friendly grizzly (82ada0)

  14. Justin, please don’t refer to the accuser as a “dancer.”

    She has a profession, for which there is an appropriate term, but it isn’t “dancer.”

    Dana (3e4784)

  15. Backing up Dana and our host being protected by some federal law:

    She was a prostitute. (A little time has passed and she may have changed professions.)

    nk (57e995)

  16. The friendly grizzley asked:

    Where do these men go to get their reputations and lives back?

    Unfortunately, nowhere.

    Was it Ray Donovan who asked that question most famously? Regardless, in our American system, if you are charged with a crime, and are then acquitted or have the charges dismissed, you are still out the attorney’s fees and you have still had your name plastered all over the media and there will always be some who think, well, just because he wasn’t convicted, he still might have been guilty. Perhaps our esteemed host knows of situations where the wrongly accused person got his attorney’s fees reimbursed, but I’d think that such is rather rare.

    Dana (556f76)

  17. NK wrote:

    A little time has passed and she may have changed professions.

    Unfortunately, no; she’s still trying to f people for money.

    Dana (556f76)

  18. This will help drive home the point that behavior like his is not the norm for prosecutors.

    The hell it isn’t. Prosecutors and police are scum.

    John Sabotta (117548)

  19. Another Radley Balko fan weighs in.

    Patterico (906bfc)

  20. Way to suck up to the host, John.

    DRJ (51a774)

  21. The North Carolina Conference of District Attorneys is recommending Nifong recuse himself from the case. Actually, I believe that this can also be done on the defendants’ motion or the Court’s motion and a special prosecutor appointed, on the same grounds.

    nk (5e5670)

  22. I’d be duly chastised by your flip little dismissal, Patterico, if I wasn’t aware of a case of a person who was jailed on false evidence. Since, being unable to afford a real defence attorney, the person in question had to accept what he was offered, I see no point in revealing specific details and opening this person up to inevitable retaliation.

    You and all other prosecutors enable and cooperate with murdering thugs, perjurers and thieves in uniform. As I said, you are all scum. This Nifong character just happened to be clumsier and unluckier than usual.

    John Sabotta (3155e6)

  23. I don’t say this kind of thing often, but: your argument is idiotic. Because something bad happened to someone you know, therefore I am scum.

    Go back to Balko and wallow in the hatred of prosecutors. I don’t need moronic arguments here.

    Patterico (906bfc)

  24. Okay, I guess I am prejudiced against prosecutors.

    I’m also prejudiced against Nazis too, even though at least some of them never actually murdered anybody.

    I guess you must be the good prosecutor then.

    And yes, “hatred” is exactly the right term.

    [You don’t know a thing about me. You are being completely irrational. I really think you’d be happier at Balko’s site, which I know you read. So if you can’t get over your illogical need to rant at someone you never met, about whom you know absolutely nothing, then why don’t you simply leave this site and not come back? — P]

    John Sabotta (3155e6)

  25. Incidentally, I like how you use the phrase “something bad happened to someone you know” as if it was something that just happened and which nobody – certainly nobody connected with “law enforcement” – could possibly ever be held responsible for.

    Typical.

    John Sabotta (3155e6)

  26. Jesus Christ.

    Sir, I know nothing about that situation. Let’s assume for the sake of argument that a prosecutor screwed your friend or loved one in the worst way imaginable.

    It has nothing to do with me.

    If a guy in a green shirt screws your wife, it doesn’t make it rational for you to punch the next guy in a green shirt you see.

    And it’s not rational for you to project your hatred for some other prosecutor onto me.

    But based on your comments so far, I suspect it’s a waste of time to try to reason with you.

    If you’re looking to pick a fight with someone you don’t know — which is what this looks like — do it elsewhere.

    Goodbye.

    Patterico (906bfc)

  27. Nifong is just another in along line of corrupt N.C. lawyer-politicians. I have exposed
    NC Att. Gen. Roy Cooper’s fraud on the US Supreme Court for 14 months at http://www.ncjusticefraud.com. The mainstream media won’t report on this story, or even question Cooper about it.

    Chris Langdon, qiology@aol.com

    Chris Langdon (71415b)

  28. Nifong should get jail time….. If he doesn’t, then he should be sued for his last penny. I do think, NC should make an example of him and send him to jail. This type of injustice has no place in our criminal justice system. The entire country, let alone the world, have watched this case and cannot believe this man still has a job even when we all know he’s a criminal.

    Tim (a8581d)

  29. The Power Of Blogging! Durham Is YOUR town too!
    I ask you all to also request an Investigation into the DPD, and Sheriff’s Department, and why nothing is being done about the unsolved murders?! Not only my brother but also a recent triple homicide, Janet Araboa, Michelle Young, and who knows how many others!

    Our cases have been kicked to the curb, and 2 years have come and gone without not even being important, but disgustingly neglected! Nifong is hard from being the sole villain, his league is quite enormous and encompasses many others in positions of authority who have also abused their offices!

    There needs to be INVESTIGATIONS, and REFORM! Anything less will accomplish nothing! Nifong is by far the first politician to succumb to abject corruption! Every day is another story of another crooked members of government caught in everything from murder to fraud in office!
    The entire scope of the matter is that Durham has become like Carson City in the “Old West!” Lawlessness is the rule rather than the exception!

    The Governor needs to be told that “WE” as in “THE PEOPLE” DEMAND accountability, and “WE” will expect NOTHING less than a thorough review by FEDERAL INVESTIGATORS!

    Set a PRESIDENT! Durham is not just in North Carolina, but is in each of our United States! Let “OUR” government KNOW that “WE” will not continue to condone anarchy within our own homeland, brought upon us by “ROGUE” officials!
    The very word ROGUE does not begin to even touch the surface of what really lies beneath! ROGUE is a compliment compared to what they really are! And that is depraved individuals who care only for their own gain and agendas, are veritably let go with a slap to the hand, and defile the oaths they swore upon to uphold!
    All they have UPHELD is their own self interest and those of their cronies, meanwhile OUR rights are abused, neglected, disrespected, ignored, and denied!”

    “WE” the people have been vehemently denied our voices and rights to be heard! NO family should be forced into bankruptcy in order for us to have “RIGHTS” to be heard to the courts! This nation was NOT made so that legal affairs would be forever drug on by lawyers in it for their own gain! I am disgusted our country has become so defiled!
    MANY of our loved ones have, and are serving in the military so that “WE” may have our freedom and our rights!

    “WE” must STAND TOGETHER, massively call, and bother to send by certified mail thousands of letters telling them we will accept NOTHING less! “THEY” work for us! A third of our wages goes into the support of our country! “WE” elect these people! To look the other way is not just giving in, it is cowardice, IMO.

    What more fitting detriment to our millions of war dead to know that the flag they bled, and died for is nothing more than a piece of cloth woven in a communist country by enslaved women and children, only because we care about the cheapest cost regardless of it’s price, and leave out “One Nation, (UNDER GOD)?!?!

    I am sure they are shaking their heads and saying, THESE are OUR descendants?! Just remember our “ROOTS AND OUR RIGHTS” and there is very much power within UNITY!

    Rhonda Fleming (28eff5)


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