Thursday, December 28, 2006 - North Carolina State Bar Files Ethics Complaint Against Duke Lacrosse Rape Prosecutor Mike Nifong - Local News | News Articles | Nationa

Well, it had to happen sooner or later. District Attorney Mike Nifong has done so many egregious things in his handling of the rape allegations against three Duke University lacrosse players, that he had to be breaking some rules somewhere. Those who follow a pattern of bad-faith behavior will, sooner or later, go over the line in a way that even the most complacent authorities can no longer ignore. And that's what's happened now: Mike Nifong is in trouble--serious trouble--with the North Carolina Bar Association, who may be the only ones who can proceed against him, thanks to "prosecutorial immunity."

Here is a complete time-line of events surrounding the March 13 wild party, its aftermath, and the investigation of same.Note these key dates:

  • March 24: Investigators take DNA samples from 46 of 47 lacrosse players
  • April 10: Defense lawyers say DNA test results failed to connect lacrosse players to alleged rape
And then--more than six months later--we learn that the DNA test results are worse than inconclusive: they are well-nigh exculpatory. Not only do they show that Mike Nifong has got the wrong dudes, but they also show that five other dudes did it, if "it" was in fact anything more serious than a few rolls in the hay.

Sportsfans, if that isn't a vindictive misuse of the prerogatives of governmental office, I don't know what is.

Understand this: that still doesn't excuse the incredibly bad judgment that the Duke lax team captain showed in having a stripper come to his rented house to entertain him and his teammates. And those boys are still blessed that she didn't sink a knife into one of their bellies, or their backs. Not that I have any reason to suspect that this particular accuser would do such a thing. It's just that you never know with perfect strangers whom you invite into your house to get very-very-personal with. Do that often enough, and sooner or later you're going to get yourself seriously hurt or killed. It's that simple. Compared to that sort of thing, even a malicious, bad-faith prosecution is something, frankly, to be thankful for, just for not being worse.

All the same, though I dislike the sort of guy who would hire a prostitute--or someone very much like a prostitute, such as an ecdysiast--I dislike abusive government authorities even more.