Thursday, December 17, 2009

NBC-17 News and all media need to stop misleading and insulting the public

Yesterday evening while watching Melanie Sanders deliver the evening news on NBC-17, she mentioned a story about former Governor Mike Easley retaining the services of the prominent criminal defense attorney Joseph Cheshire. She went on to state that Mr. Cheshire was well known for “representing a ‘falsely’ accused Duke Lacrosse defendant.” The statement was read as a matter of fact, and not as opinion.

This statement is totally false and misleading, and is intended to further embed in the consciousness of its weak-minded viewers that the Duke Lacrosse defendants were innocent of the charges brought by former Durham District Attorney Mike Nifong. It would have been accurate and responsible for Ms. Sanders to omit the adverb “falsely” and phrase the statement as follows, “…representing an accused Duke Lacrosse defendant.” But, unfortunately, accuracy and truth does not appear to be the top priority of NBC-17. If it was, the statement she made would never have been uttered.

Make no mistake about it, NBC-17 is not alone in misleading the public about this issue. In fact, I would say that the majority, if not all, of the media outlets refer to the Duke Lacrosse players as being “innocent,” “falsely accused,” and “wrongly accused”; while referring to the accuser and the alleged sexual assault as being a “hoax,” and “false accuser.”

These misleading statements have been made by the media ever since North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper’s “Innocent Promulgation of April 11, 2007,” in which he made the unprecedented proclamation that the Duke Lacrosse players charged with sexual assault were “innocent,” and that “nothing happened.” As has been referenced in a previous blog, the attorney general made these statements after Joe Cheshire’s underling, Brad Bannon, had a conversation with Assistant Attorney Generals James J. Coman and Mary Winstead. Mr. Bannon directed them to have the attorney general declare that the Duke Lacrosse defendants were “innocent” and that “nothing happened.” This is exactly what transpired at the attorney general’s press conference on April 11, 2007.

Now although the attorney general belongs to the executive branch of government and not the judicial branch, the media has never, to my knowledge, challenged the validity of Mr. Cooper’s proclamations. Instead it has embraced them as a basis for making statements of fact that the Duke Lacrosse defendants are innocent and that nothing happened. This is not objective reporting. It is biased reporting, and is a keystone in supporting our belief that the media is in cahoots with the anti-Nifong forces (the state of North Carolina and its agencies – such as the NC State Board of Elections and others – , the North Carolina State Bar, and the carpetbagger families of the Duke Lacrosse players).

Unlike the conspiratorial link between the Duke Lacrosse defense team and the North Carolina Attorney General’s Office (through Brad Bannon), no smoking gun has directly established a direct relationship between the Duke Lacrosse defendants and the media. However, a reliable source does note that the father of defendant Dave Evans is an attorney who works with the media, and his position as such could give him access to the upper echelon of media bigwigs. And higher-ups in the executive offices of these media corporations have final say in the spin and propaganda used in formulating and carrying out its agenda. It is, and has been, the goal of the media, in general, to destroy Mr. Nifong, and to defend and sanitize the Duke Lacrosse defendants.

The Committee on Justice for Mike Nifong has long challenged the legitimacy of the “innocent” proclamation by Roy Cooper. Committee President Victoria B. Peterson in a July 2009 interview on WPTF-680 AM’s “Bill LuMaye Show” challenged the validity of Mr. Cooper’s declaration of “innocent.” Likewise, Committee Lay Advocate Sidney B. Harr also called into question the propriety and legality of the “innocent proclamation” during his appearance on that radio talk show in September 2009.

NBC-17 News and all media need to begin reporting objectively and fairly on the Duke Lacrosse case. To do so would include the following when writing a factually based news story: 1) refrain from using terms such as “innocent” or “falsely accused” to describe the Duke Lacrosse defendants; 2) refrain from using terms such as “hoax” to describe the alleged crime; and 3) refrain from using terms such as “false accuser” to describe the alleged victim.

The media needs to give up the biased charade to promote the Duke Lacrosse defendants as “innocent” and stop playing Jedi mind-tricks on the impressionable public. Failure to immediately cease and desist from doing so will continue to mislead those who believe what the media says, and insult the intelligence of those who know better.

34 comments:

JSwift said...

Sidney,

You claim to have used a now unavailable WRAL article to provide what you term “irrefutable” proof that Brad Bannon “conspired” with AG Cooper to produce the declaration by Mr. Cooper that the defendants were “innocent” of the crimes for which they had been charged.

You ask that we accept without substantiation your recollection of the article.

You have now made this conspiracy allegation three times with no substantiation. I ask that you retract these allegations until you can provide the article on which you claim to have based your analysis or some other support for your allegation. Despite several requests from your readers, you have failed to do so.

You now also claim that WRAL removed the article due to pressure from Mr. Cooper. You provide no substantiation for this charge. I ask that you retract this allegation unless you can support it with facts.

I remind you that you have been shown to have been dishonest in your analysis, engaged in distortion, forgotten or mischaracterized facts, adopted a shameful double standard in your examination of the case, demonstrated an abysmal lack of understanding of basic legal concepts and failed to provide evidence to support your conclusions. Yet you criticize media analysts for their “bias” and failure to substantiate their statements.

Your own performance is far worse.

Walt said...

Syd,

I think it is safe to say that the Duke lacrosse players were falsely accused. That is a statement of fact.

Walt-in-Durham

P.S. Merry Christmas

Justice58 said...

I think it is safe to say that the Duke lacrosse players were falsely accused.



Roy Cooper gave an unqualified proclamation!

dayofi said...

Roy Cooper gave an unqualified proclamation!

Yes, he said that the players were innocent without qualification.

Not maybe innocent, not partially innocent, 100% innocent.

No need to qualify it.

Anonymous said...

Good to see that the Liesobbers board is hitting the skids, sinking to all time new lows.

That place is like being in a chicken coop. They all just bawk about the same stupid things, and are nothing more than racist hypocrites.

If this case involved 3 black men accused of raping a white stripper, they would be all for the stripper because she is white.

They have turned this into a race and class case, then ban people who do not share their twisted and biased opinions.

I am not a supporter of Nifong by far, nor do I support the 3 Stooges and the whore.

The ENTIRE issue is that a District Attorney was criminally negligent, the corruption within the leaders of the city and state served only to aid him in his malicious criminal activities, and the DOJ is a complete farce!

The FACT is that something DID happen, but millions of dollars have been spent to keep all of the facts from becoming public.

The lawyers, players, and families add their tidbits under pseudonyms, and turned this into a carnival.

The disgusting reality of this entire case is that Nifong is/was not the only knave, NOTHING has changed, accept to get worse, and the cow ran way with the spoon.

It is like nobody has the courage to oust the people involved, used Fong as the royal scapegoat, and turned this into a race issue to distract any rational person into seeing nothing but smog.

I am still dedicated to ensuring there WILL be a DOJ investigation, as the crimes committed in office by Fong and crew reaches much deeper than misconduct.

Crimes against humanity have/is occuring in Durham, and I am sure in each city, but Durham is personal to my family. My brother's murder, and organ theft have been avoided far too long, and I will NEVER end my quest seek JUSTICE, and will not be silenced by a cash settlement!

Personally, I would like to have a REAL discussion with both sides over the REAL issues of CORRUPTION!

Certainly this is something both sides must agree on?!

Rhonda Fleming
Justice4Jack
Sister of Allen Jackson Croft Jr.
Murdered May 11, 2005 in Durham
Justice4all2005@yahoo.com
www.myspace.com/Sinnderrella
PLEASE read my page and blogs, there is much ado about something!

My petition for a DOJ investigation:
http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/doj-fda-investigation

butpr said...

Justice4Jack, organ theft?

So, are we thinking that it wasn't a suicide after all?

Justice58 said...

dayofi,

Innocent my A$$!

Anonymous said...

butpr said...
Justice4Jack, organ theft?

So, are we thinking that it wasn't a suicide after all?

December 18, 2009 8:08 AM


My brother did not bash his head in, beat himself up, then execute himself, it was a STAGED suicide, and a murder for hire!

I have stated the fact we suspect his wife hired his killer, I have stated this fact publically countless times.

She has NEVER replied, does not even live in the home, cut herself off from us 2 weeks after his murder, and is no secret to those at IBM and Duke Med Center. (She was a pharmacist there and quit right after his murder)

I welcome any input from people who knew/knows either of them.

Rhonda Fleming
Justice4Jack

PS, read my MySpace for more details about his murder, and organ theft.

unbekannte said...

Biased prejudiced racist bigot fanatic know nothing megalomaniac.

Your ass is far from innocent, saccharin, along with the rest of your body.

unbekannte said...

Biased prejudiced racist bigot fanatic know nothing megalomaniac injustice58:

Present the hard evidence that the Lacrosse players are guilty of raping cgm. cgm's word is not hard evidence. So far as the dna on cgm's fingernail, how do you know that it did not get there by cgm going after Davtd Evans. It has been documented she was an experienced sex worker at the time. It would be more likely she went afyer him.

dayofi said...

bug-eyedcynthiamckinneylook-alike58 - Innocent my A$$!

No evidence that a crime had even been committed, so of course the players are innocent.

Justice58 said...

Gee,

As if I'm bothered by the name calling? It's a clear sign a nerve has been touched. The truth hurts, doesn't it?

The rotten thugs aren't innocent. No amount of name calling is going to change that. The case should have went to trial. Then we'd know what really happened.

Like I said...Innocent my a$$!

obyfi said...

The case should have went to trial.

Can you at least pretend like you can speak and write properly?

TIA

The case was going to get kicked by Judge Smith on Feb 5, no matter what. As it turms out, Nifong's stepping down made it that much better.

Justice58 said...

The case was going to get kicked by Judge Smith on Feb 5, no matter what. As it turms out, Nifong's stepping down made it that much better.


Ha!


Keep repeating that and maybe you'll convince yourself.

Innocent my a$$!

Anonymous said...

@ Miss Piggy:

flom what I hear, your A$$ is anything but innocent!

JSwift said...

It would have been accurate and responsible for Ms. Sanders to omit the adverb “falsely” and phrase the statement as follows, “…representing an accused Duke Lacrosse defendant.”

Sidney,

I am afraid that your suggestion is also misleading—perhaps even more so than the version you criticize. You fail to provide your reader with critical facts regarding the disposition of the case. You fail to note, for example, even that the charges were dropped. As you know, that is a crucial fact.

You can provide a more complete description and provide relevant information, even if you insist on not using terms such as “innocent,” “falsely accused,” “false accuser,” etc. It becomes a bit clumsy, but provides the necessary information to the reader.

I suggest the following:

“…representing an accused Duke Lacrosse defendant. Charges in that case were dropped when the special prosecutors concluded that there was ‘no credible evidence’ that the crimes with which the accused players had were charged had even occurred. The special prosecutors reached this conclusion when they determined that the accusations by the accuser were not corroborated by any other witness or other evidence, were contradicted by other witnesses and by physical evidence, and differed materially in statements made by the accuser at different times. The special prosecutors further concluded that the identifications involved ‘questionable procedures’ and that other evidence demonstrated that ‘the accused individuals could not have participated in an attack during the time it was alleged to have occurred.’ Former District Attorney Michael B. Nifong, who had originally prosecuted the case, later stated that he agreed with the determination by the special prosecutors that there was ‘no credible evidence’ to support the charges.”

Although I concede that it is a little long, I believe that my description provides relevant facts that allow the reader to reach an independent conclusion. I have taken your advice and excluded the inappropriate opinions you criticize. You are welcome to adopt it.

Justice58 said...

They did get off… even without a trial.


Despicable arrogant racist thugs!

Nifong Supporter said...

To Walt-in-Durham:

Thanks for the holiday greeting. Hope you and your family have a great Christmas as well.

Regarding the statement by the media of using "falsely accused" I believe that they are basing the statement, not on common sense or their personal feelings, but on a statement by Attorney General Roy Cooper. They are allowing an officer in the executive branch of government to make a judicial statement, and instead of challenging it, embracing it as the truth. Roy Cooper's declaration of "innocent" has no more validity or legal weight than if I were to make such a proclamation. That is the point of the article.

Anonymous said...

If the 3 Stooges were such alter boys, then why did they settle out of court, and not go to trial?

They chose money over going public with the "truth."

You all can banter forever on every minute detail, but you will never know it all, because they will lose their millions.

Shame on all of you for turning this into a circus! This case is over, and what CAN be done is to have a Federal Investigation into the CORRUPTION that has plagued Durham for many years, and the rotten system that has not changed one bit, accept to become worse!

All of this back and forth is moot!
If you want to make a difference, then sign my petition! I am not giving up, no matter how many years it takes, and over no amount of money!

There is only one chance at a trial, no statute of limitations on murder, and we are not willing to take a chance of "double-jeopardy," or a fair trial in Durham!

If any of you want to truly make a difference, and stop this pointless drivel, take 30 seconds to sign our petition, and help more than just my family to have REAL truth and justice!

Rhonda Fleming
Justice4Jack
Sister of Allen Jackson Croft Jr.
Murdered May 11, 2005 in Durham NC
Justice4all2005@yahoo.com
www.myspace.com/Sinnderrella

30 seconds: http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/doj-fda-investigation

JSwift said...

Regarding the statement by the media of using "falsely accused" I believe that they are basing the statement, not on common sense or their personal feelings, but on a statement by Attorney General Roy Cooper.

Sidney,

You have repeatedly made the claim that the media is incapable of reaching an independent conclusion and relies entirely on Mr. Cooper’s declaration that the accused players were “innocent” of the charges.

While I agree that some journalists are lazy and have not examined the evidence available, I believe that many have done so and reached independent conclusions with which you disagree.

As you know, charges were dropped when the special prosecutors concluded that there was “‘no credible evidence” that the crimes with which the accused players were charged had even occurred. The special prosecutors reached this conclusion when they determined that the accusations by the accuser were not corroborated by any other witness or other evidence, were contradicted by other witnesses and by physical evidence, and differed materially in statements made by the accuser at different times. The special prosecutors further concluded that the identifications involved “questionable procedures” and that other evidence demonstrated that “the accused individuals could not have participated in an attack during the time it was alleged to have occurred.”

Mr. Nifong later stated that he agreed with the determination by the special prosecutors that there was “no credible evidence” to support the charges. Patrick Baker, on behalf of the City of Durham, supported the declaration of innocence and questioned why it took the justice system more than one year “to reach the conclusion that the allegations of rape, sexual assault and kidnapping were unfounded.” Ben Himan, one of the DPD investigators responsible for the case and the DPD’s liaison with the special prosecutor’s investigation, stated under oath that he had concluded that Ms. Mangum “was not telling the truth about anything.” Durham City Councilman Eugene Brown asked: “why did three Durham residents have to go to Raleigh and to the Attorney General's office to get justice?”

The evidence made available through court filings and Nifong’s disbarment hearing and criminal contempt trial confirms these conclusions. No information made available has seriously challenged them. You have added nothing to raise any questions.

A journalist or “weak-minded” viewer can conclude from an independent review that the defendants were “innocent” of the charges and that they were “falsely accused.” In doing so, they independently reach the same conclusion as Roy Cooper, Jim Coman, Mary Winstead, Patrick Baker, Ben Himan, Bill Bell, Eugene Brown and many, many others.

I too wish you a Merry Christmas.

Anonymous said...

NiFong 30 up, 1 down love it hate it

buy nifong mugs, tshirts and magnets
action verb

The practice of deception by hiding important evidence, information, or creating false statements to futher ones career without being caught. To knowingly undermine set professional standards to further ones career, on the back of innocent people. Useful tool of lawyers, politicans, accountants or anyone trying to get the edge over people.

An illegal and unethical act of conducting issues of trust and legal proceedings. Maybe punishable by legal remedies if caught doing it.

A tool for people in position of power, authority, or trust to conduct a form of fraudlant practices to futher ones hidden agenda.
. The district attorney tried to do a Nifong on us, but we caught on, as well as the jury.

2. The officials of Enron Nifonged the stockholders, employees, and the public, which eventually caused Enron officials being convicted of fraud see Enron.

3. The accounted did a Nifong on the board of directors and stockholders to keep his job and his financial missteps quiet and hidden.

4. The politicians did a nifong on the voters, just to get elected on a shaky platform.

5. If a lawyer does the nifong option, and caught he can be disbarred, lose his law license and by sued by victims of his nifonging.

6. The district attorney performed a Nifong and got away with it, causing the defendant to be found guilty.

Whatchoo talkin' 'bout, Sidney? said...

SH - I believe that they are basing the statement, not on common sense or their personal feelings, but on a statement by Attorney General Roy Cooper.

You give the public, including the media, no credit. Most of the known universe had figured out that the players were innocent long before April 11, 2006.


SH - Roy Cooper's declaration of "innocent" has no more validity or legal weight than if I were to make such a proclamation. That is the point of the article.

Not quite. The Dismissal (Form AOC-CR-307) clearly states that the defendants were innocent, and that the charges were dismissed (with prejudice, meaning that they cannot be refiled) because the players were innocent.

That form was accepted by the Judge, and is a part of the Court record.

So, yes, the declaration of innocence, has both validity and legal weight.

Anonymous said...

Justice58:

You're right. This was a travesty of justice.

There was significant evidence that Gottlieb, Himan and Nifong obstructed justice, intimidated witnesses and committed perjury or attempted to suborn perjury.

"They did get off… even without a trial."

JSwift said...

Roy Cooper’s “Innocent Promulgation of April 11, 2007,” in which he made the unprecedented proclamation that the Duke Lacrosse players charged with sexual assault were “innocent,” and that “nothing happened.”

Sidney,

I listened again to Mr. Cooper's April 11, 2007, news conference and reread his formal statement. I listened to the clip of the interview with Mr. Cooper posted on the 60 Minutes website. I ran a google search for "Cooper" "nothing happened" "Duke".

I was unable to find a reference to a statement by Mr. Cooper that "nothing happened" on any site except this one.

As you know, Mr. Cooper does conclude that the defendant are "innocent" because there is "no credible evidence that these crimes occurred..."

Can you please provide a link to Mr. Cooper's statement at the April 11, 2007, press conference that "nothing happened" ? You make a big deal about the specific phrases "innocent" and "nothing happened" and I wanted to see and hear the context.

Thanks in advance.

Nifong Supporter said...

To JSwift:

Regarding your request for a link to a reference where Mr. Cooper stated, in essence, that "nothing happened": http://www.cnn.com/2007/LAW/04/11/cooper.transcript/index.html?iref=allsearch

The specific paragraph that I refer to is the following: "Next week we'll be providing a written summary of the important factual findings and some of the specific contradictions that have led us to the conclusion that no attack occurred."

For Mr. Cooper to say "no attack occurred" is essentially the same as "nothing happened." I do not believe that a reasonable person would believe differently. And, it is not worth parsing every nuance of every single word. Mr. Cooper stated that nothing happened, and that is exactly what the media, the state, and the attorneys for the carpetbagger families of the Duke lacrosse defendants tried to get Mr. Nifong to admit to. But he never did. Mr. Nifong always maintained that something happened.

JSwift said...

Sidney,

I thank you for your response. However, I suggest that you not place "nothing happened" in quotes if Mr. Cooper said something different. Direct quotations are different that something that "in essence" is the same. "Nothing happened" is more inclusive that a conclusion that the crimes for which the defendants had been indicted did not occur.

Have you made any progress on the "answer" you promised me 17 days ago?

Merry Christmas.

Anonymous said...

A lot happened! Men hired prostitutes to perform for a party, the hookers did not provide services rendered, the men took the money back, hurled racial slurs back and forth, she cries rape, and the DA jumps on it to use it to win an election.

One paragraph tells the entire story. There should have been charges brought, but rape was not one of them. Are you all so blind as to not see the case for what it is, instead of each side trying to pick the other apart, because of this being turned into race?!

The FACTS that have been made public stand. Nifong will NEVER get his law license back, and has yet to be charged with other crimes in office!

Another case of CONSPIRACY, and the DOJ are the ones that are going to cough up an investigation, whether they want to or not!

Why don't you all agree that THIS should be the focus, and NOT about handing the criminal back his tools he used to commit offences with?!

The same stinking system exists, and THAT is something that can be changed, so why not DO something instead of wasting time with all of this useless drivel?!

Rhonda Fleming
Justice4Jack
Sister of Allen Jackson Croft Jr.
Murdered May 11, 2005 in Durham
Justice4all2005@yahoo.com
http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/doj-fda-investigation

Whatchoo talkin' 'bout, Sidney? said...

Sidney -...and that is exactly what the media, the state, and the attorneys for the carpetbagger families of the Duke lacrosse defendants tried to get Mr. Nifong to admit to. But he never did. Mr. Nifong always maintained that something happened.

Nifong has equivocated in his statements as to whether or not 'something happened'. His statement changed in obviously self-serving ways, depending on the venue in which he was making the statement.

It is difficult to understand how he could come to the conclusion that 'something happened' since Nifong admits that he never personally spoke to Crystal about the events of March 13-14, 2006, and read little if any of the case file.

That refusal to man up is only one of the several reasons why Nifong's bar card will never be restored.

PS - 'carpetbagger families'? Really, why the gratuitous pejorative, Sidney? Do you think that Durham would be better off without Duke there?

unbekannte said...

biased prejudiced racist bigot fanatic know nothing megalomaniac injustice58

Why don't you tell us what hard evidence you have that the lacrosse players were guilty? Is it because you have no evidence, cyclamate? Isn't it true you are calling them guilty because they are white and cgm is black?

And you protest being named a racist.

unbekannte said...

biased prejudiced racist fanatic bigot know nothing megalomaniac injustice58:

You say the case should have gone to trial. Why should a case which depends only on the word of a barely credible witness.

Of course, cgm could go to trial. she could file a civil suit and prove she was raped and the lacrosse players did it. Thus far she and all her deluded racist fans have ducked a civil suit. The most likely reason was given by Roy Cooper. There is no evidence that any crime happened.

For all your ranting and raving about name calling, you have never offered any evidence that the lacrosse players did anything. All you have done is call them and their supporters names.

So, aspartame, where is the evidence they are guilty?

unbekannte said...

from justice4jack:

"If the 3 Stooges were such alter boys, then why did they settle out of court, and not go to trial?"

If you have been following the case, you would know the lacrosse players are trying to "go to trial". They have filed civil suits which, if they go to trial, will require them to make their case. It is Durham, Nifong, and the other defendants who are trying to avoid trial.

Are you serious? Why should they have to go through a criminal trial when all the hard evidence says no crime occurred? It was Duke University which did not want to go to trial over this. Duke settled with them rather than have it all come out.

Please tell us what due process, the presumption of innocence mean to you. You make it sound like it maens very little to you.

Nifong Supporter said...

To Whatchoo talkin' 'bout, Sidney?:

Thanks for the info regarding Form AOC CR-307. I will be posting a blog about it shortly.

However, as you noted, it was a DISMISSAL form. Not a verdict form. By signing the form, the judge merely accepted the attorney general's request to dismiss it. Nothing more.


If you have access to the CR-307 form that was actually filled out, could you send me a link to it, or tell me where I can see it. Thanks.

Whatchoo talkin' 'bout, Sidney? said...

Sidney, here are the Dismissal forms for Evans, Finnerty, and Seligmann - http://www.newsobserver.com/content/media/2007/4/11/Document.pdf

Anonymous said...

They are suing civally because they know they will pay them with another settlement. This case has gone beyond truth into money!

Duke settled because they have alumnists to consider, they city will settle because they have their "cough/choke" pride.

Rhonda Fleming
Justice4Jack