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The Wilmington Journal ^ | August 4, 2006 | Cash Michaels

Posted on 08/04/2006 2:20:02 PM PDT by abb

COUSIN DEFENDS HUSH MONEY CLAIM, WEEK OF AUGUST 3-9, 2006 by CASH MICHAELS The Wilmington Journal Originally posted 8/4/2006

[DURHAM, NC.] The cousin of the accuser in the controversial Duke lacrosse rape case insists that she was told by the alleged victim of a $2 million hush money attempt to have the woman back away from her charges, even though a newly uncovered Durham police memo, which purportedly was part of the prosecution’s discovery evidence to the defense, suggests otherwise.

“Jakki,” the alleged victim’s older cousin and designated spokesperson for her and the family, was shocked and outraged last week after a reporter for The Carolinian and Wilmington Journal newspapers made her aware of a copy of the discovery document, which has been confirmed as an internal Durham police memo from one Duke rape case investigator to another, saying that the accuser denied the claim to police when asked days after the explosive story came out in June.

In fact, she maintains, the rest of the family, apart from the alleged victim, actually debated the matter early in the case after it allegedly occurred.

“I don’t, I don’t understand this,” an audibly shaken Jakki, who uses only her first name while speaking for her cousin and family, told The Carolinian and Wilmington Journal newspapers exclusively last week. “I guess this whole thing is just to discredit me. My family asked me to be the spokesperson for my cousin, and when I talked to my cousin [she asked me too].”

“My family’s known about them offering not just [my cousin], but the [Black] leaders, you know, to make this go away. That’s something that’s been bandied about.”

Jakki, who has represented the alleged victim on programs like ABC’s Good Morning America, CNN’s Nancy Grace, and in one instance, was interviewed live in the New York studios of Fox News, added that since the story came out over a month ago, her cousin has never told her that she even spoke to a detective about the allegation, so there was never a complaint leveled to her about what was said.

“I don’t know where this is coming from,” said a surprised Jakki, “I really don’t.”

A hard copy of the document was mailed to Jakki over the weekend after the interview was conducted. By presstime she had not heard back from her cousin about it, and remains the family’s spokesperson until further notice.

The alleged victim remains in seclusion with the help of handlers, and cannot be reached for comment. She reportedly has an attorney, but he has neither been identified nor heard from.

The discovery document copy was emailed unsolicited just before 6 p.m. on Tuesday, July 25 (but not opened until much later that night) to a reporter for The Carolinian and Wilmington Journal newspapers from Raleigh criminal defense attorneys Joseph B. Cheshire and Brad Bannon.

The pair represent former Duke lacrosse captain Dave Evans, 23, who, along with Colin Finnerty, 19, and Reade Seligmann, 20, was indicted for first-degree rape, first-degree kidnapping and first-degree sexual offense in connection with the alleged victim’s claim that she was sodomized and beaten by the trio during a wild off-campus lacrosse party she was hired to dance at March 13.

In the email, which had the document copy attached as a PDF file, Attorney Bannon wrote to the reporter, “The attached page of discovery (BS 1850) appeared in the last handful of documents we received from the State [prosecution] on 7-17-06. It’s a copy of an e-mail sent by [Durham police Investigator] Richard Clayton to [Detective] Mark Gottlieb on 6-25-06 about your article in The Carolinian, which was apparently picked up by NBC 17 [television news website], regarding Jakki’s claim of a hush money payment offer to [her cousin].”

Bannon continued, “You will see handwritten notes on the copy. That’s Gottlieb’s handwriting. It memorializes a conversation he had with [lead Duke rape case Investigator] Ben Himan on 6-30-06 in which Himan told him (Gottlieb) that he (Himan) had spoken to [the alleged victim] about Jakki’s claim, and [the alleged victim] denied that she had ever received such an offer. [The alleged victim] went on to tell Himan that Jakki “is out of the loop,” and she (the alleged victim)) “doesn’t know where cousin is getting it from.”

The email from Bannon concluded, “I just thought you would want to know this, as it casts a considerable amount of doubt on the credibility of Jakki as a reliable source of information and spokesperson for [the alleged victim] and her family.”

It was Bannon’s colleague, atty. Cheshire, who told reporters on June 22 when asked about the hush money allegation, “These boys are innocent. No money has been or ever will be offered in this case.”

Bannon clarified later they meant no one directly connected to their client, Evans, or any of the other defendants, was involved in offering any money to anyone connected to the case.

The document copy Bannon attached of Investigator Clayton’s June 25 typewritten memo to Sgt. Gottlieb, and Gottlieb’s handwritten response actually shows a lot more.

Next to the subject line, Clayton apparently typed “$$$.” He titled the memo “THIS IS PRETTY INTRESTING!!!! FROM NBC17.COM,” misspelling “interesting.”

Clayton copied two lines from the report:

Although all three players have proclaimed their innocence, a cousin of the accuser has told The Carolinian newspaper that Duke alumni have offered the woman as much as $2 million to halt the prosecution.

She told me they wanted her to make the case go away, the woman’s cousin is quoted as saying.

Under those lines Clayton typed in caps, “JUST 10-14,” ending his memo to his boss, Gottlieb.

It is further down that Sgt. Gottlieb, who is the supervisor of investigators in the Duke rape case, apparently handwrote “6/30/06 @ 1155…Spoke to Himan. She (the alleged victim) denies same. States cousin is out of loop & doesn’t know where cousin is getting it from.”

Gottlieb’s handwritten answer ends there.

To make sure that the “hush money” police document forwarded to The Carolinian/Wilmington Journal reporter was, in fact, authentic, since it came from the defense attorneys and not the police department, a reporter faxed the copy to Kammie Michael, Durham police Dept. spokesperson.

“It is legitimate,” Michael called back minutes later to confirm. “I verified it with one of the people involved.” When Jakki was contacted by phone last week, a reporter read the document to her, and questioned her extensively about the implications.

She doubted the document’s veracity, noting that her cousin, though a second-year college honor student, does not use the term “out of the loop.” Jakki also asked how she could be the designated spokesperson for her younger cousin, and be “out of the loop” on what television and newspaper reporters are asking about weekly.

Jakki recalled that the first person to actually tell her about the alleged hush money attempt was her aunt, who is the alleged victim’s mother. Because of the huge amount, the family debated it, Jakki said.

Her younger cousin later told her that “alums of Duke” quietly offered, through her family, $2 million if the alleged victim dropped the charges.

“She told me they wanted her to make the case go away,” Jakki was quoted as saying then, adding that her cousin wouldn’t take a dime from churches, community groups or even the Rev. Jesse Jackson when offered, because she did not want the taint of money to compromise her claim.

“It’s not about the money to her,” Jakki added. “It’s about she [being] brutally raped, sodomized, called a ‘nigger.’”

In the six weeks since Jakki’s story appeared, no other family member, including the alleged victim, attorney, minister or any other possible family representative thereof, has publicly denied or denounced the claim.

In fact ,when Jakki took several copies of the newspaper with the story to her relatives, including her younger cousin, she said they lauded it.

Jakki added that after reading it, her cousin offered no objections.

That June 22 exclusive story - published in Black newspapers across the country, debated on cable TV talk shows like Hannity and Colmes on Fox, and still referenced in Internet chat rooms and news forums - also reported a separate claim by sources close to several moderate Black leaders in the area that they were approached by persons “concerned about the fallout” from the Duke alleged rape controversy, and offered undisclosed sums of money for the alleged victim and her family, her school (North Carolina Central University) and the leaders themselves “if they could influence her to retract her allegations,” the story reported.

It is a crime to offer a bribe to a material witness in a criminal case, which is why those leaders (who even now, refuse to allow their names to be revealed because of the high sensitivity surrounding the matter) immediately, according to those sources, refused the alleged offers. It was not known at the time whether Durham District Attorney Mike Nifong knew anything about either the $2 million allegation, or any of these.

But before The Carolinian/Wilmington Journal newspapers asked Jakki about the police memo, a reporter doubled-checked those sources, making them aware of the police allegation.

Those sources not only maintained their original stories, but, for the first time, indicated that black intermediaries representing the alleged but unidentified person or persons concerned, were the ones who actually did the talking.

And the specific manner of the alleged approach was also, for the first time, gone into with greater detail.

No specific sum was ever disclosed, but an “idea was floated” out of the blue in conversation, according to sources, that the whole Duke rape story was “hurting Durham, hurting Duke University, and definitely wasn’t helping the young lady or her family,” who at the time were being inundated with news media, ministers, civil rights leaders, attorneys and community activists, all seeking, supposedly, to help them in some way.

By this time in early to mid-April, the alleged victim had long dropped out of sight with her two children, despite intense efforts by the media to find her. So the only way to get a message to her was through her elderly parents, provided they saw her at all.

According to the sources reinterviewed last week, the Black persons allegedly “floating” the assistance “ideas” to end the controversy would always speak in the broadest of terms, saying that because the case was so divisive to Durham, “someone” needs to do something that could somehow “help” the “young lady and her family, maybe her school,” and of course, there “could even be some financial consideration” for the person or the organization that possibly got involved, if they could speak to her and have her “think about all of this.”

According to sources, the question was then asked, “Can you think of anybody who might be interested?”

The leaders reportedly knew immediately what was being proposed, and in every situation, because they truly believed something happened to the alleged victim, and knew what was being “floated” was wrong, responded that they knew of no one interested, and the topic ended there, sources confirmed.

Since Jakki indicated that her cousin alluded to some “alums of Duke” in her allegation, The Carolinian/Wilmington Journal newspapers, in an updated version of the June 22 story, was finally able to get a representative of Duke University to comment on whether anyone at the university was aware of any effort to pay hush money to the alleged victim.

“Sam Hull, communications director for Duke University Alumni Affairs, told The Carolinian that after checking with other officials at the university about the “alums of Duke” allegation, “We have no information about that,” it was reported at the time.

“I think there’s been a rumor of it since the beginning, but…I’ve never heard it discussed,” Hull added.

To many observers, Hull clearly indicating that no one at the school had any firsthand knowledge or information about hush money allegations, but added that he was aware of rumors of same, was surprising because his response didn’t totally shoot down the possibility, as many would naturally expect he would.

In a July 19 letter from Mr. Hull to The Wilmington Journal in reaction to a published analysis that was critical of him for not totally dispelling the allegation a month earlier, he elaborated on his taped remarks.

“I told you that we had heard nothing about any hush money, other than rumors from the outset of the case that some members of the Durham community were saying that eventually Duke would try to buy its way out of this case,” Hull wrote. “So I was not speaking to the specific rumor you called about at all. I thought I was quite clear in making that point.”

In fact, according to the taped record of Hull’s answer to a reporter’s question about his awareness of any monetary offers being made to the accuser, the only remarks he made specifically to the question were those published on June 22. He made no mention then of “some members of the Durham community were saying that eventually Duke would try to buy its way out of this case,” the tape reveals.

In his July 19 letter, however, again referencing the “alums of Duke” allegation, Hull added, “There are more than 120,000 Duke alumni. I could not, and still cannot, say what each of them has or has not done. I can say that we are not aware of any such efforts and have seen no evidence that would substantiate those claims.”

Regarding the Durham police memo, if the names Sgt. Mark Gottlieb and Det. Richard Clayton are familiar to readers beyond the Duke rape case, it’s no accident.

Both Durham detectives are still under investigation by their own department’s Internal Affairs Unit for their alleged involvement in a reported racial assault on a Black cook in the parking lot of a sports pub in Raleigh on July 20.

Two other Durham police officers were charged last week by Raleigh police for allegedly hitting and kicking the man after racial epithets were exchanged, but published reports say Durham police IAU authorities are probing why at least three-four other non-uniformed officers, including Gottlieb and Clayton, allegedly just watched the affray, instead of stopping it and getting the victim medical attention.

After a short stint of administrative duty while Raleigh police questioned them, both Gottlieb and Clayton were returned to regular duties last week.

But Gottlieb also hired an attorney to represent him during the Internal Affairs investigation.

Depending on what that probe determines, the officers could be disciplined, suspended, or even terminated.

Though lead Duke rape case Investigator Benjamin Himan was not involved in the sports pub alleged assault, the very same defense attorneys who released the document to the Black Press have publicly questioned his veracity and conduct in the rape case.

The lead investigator has been accused by defense attorneys of conducting improper, and possibly illegal police lineups in the case,; omitting alleged contradictions and multiple versions of what happened, and even writing in a report that the second dancer who was present at that lacrosse party that night, Kim Roberts, told him that the rape charge was “a crock.”

In a probable cause affidavit dated March 27 from Det. Himan, he writes that after the alleged victim was taken to Duke Medical Center Emergency Room on the morning of March 14 after she claimed she was sexually assaulted, she was examined by a Forensic Sexual Assault Nurse and a physician.

“Medical records and interviews that were obtained by a subpoena revealed the victim had signs, symptoms and injuries consistent with being raped and sexually assaulted vaginally and anally,” Himan wrote.

But after D.A. Mike Nifong turned over several hundred pages of discovery evidence to defense attorneys on May 18 as required by law, they immediately determined in a June 15 motion that Himan did not obtain “medical records and interviews” until April 5, and no medical personnel were legally allowed to release details to him prior because of the federal Heath Insurance Portability and Accountability Act.

Defense attorneys say the discovery documents show Nifong didn’t issue a subpoena for the material records until March 20; it wasn’t served until March 21; they weren’t printed, dated and stamped for compliance until March 30; and Det. Himan didn’t pick them up from the hospital until April 5.

Defense attorneys add that contrary to Himan’s March 27 affidavit, none of the medical records obtained confirm the alleged victim’s condition as the investigator described.

Neither the Durham police Dept. nor D.A. Nifong has explained the defense’s allegation against Det. Himan, who, after four years on the force, became an investigator last January.

Though not specifically referring to this instance, Nifong did tell reporters last week that though he still believes a rape took place, “Obviously, there were some things we hoped we would have as evidence that we ended up not having,” a remark that could be a reflection of Himan’s work on the case.

Jakki, who told The Carolinian/Wilmington Journal newspapers in its June 22 story that beyond being her cousin and family’s spokesperson, she is also an actress, makeup artist and nightclub comedian/entertainer by trade; has been the target of scurrilous attacks from Internet blogsites supportive of the three indicted Duke lacrosse players ever since the alleged hush money story broke.

Those who were already questioning how truthful her younger cousin was about the rape allegations, based in part of select portions of discovery evidence released by defense attorneys, have also been highly skeptical and critical – some to the point of racist cynicism – about Jakki.

“This should show even more evidence of the warped intelligence, values and morals that this family has, and how the justice system can allow this to continue,” someone called “educator4all” wrote on the WTVD Forum July 26. “It is just beyond words. My heart to goes out to the 3 guys and their family.”

Jakki says she has read some of the cruel and hurtful comments about her, her cousin and their family, but that doesn’t change anything.

“They just want to discredit me because I’m the one standing up for my cousin, demanding that she be treated as a human being,” Jakki said.

TOPICS: Chit/Chat
KEYWORDS: duke; dukelax; jakki; lacrosse; newduke; nifong
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Who's on first?
1 posted on 08/04/2006 2:20:03 PM PDT by abb
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To: JLS; Dukie07; Guenevere; Howlin; Locomotive Breath; Jrabbit; investigateworld; maggief; TexKat; ...


2 posted on 08/04/2006 2:21:28 PM PDT by abb (The Dinosaur Media: A One-Way Medium in a Two-Way World)
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To: abb

Wow! This sort of removes the facade from poor little ol' Jakki! He/She must be very frustrated now. LOL!

3 posted on 08/04/2006 2:25:41 PM PDT by TommyDale (It's time to dismiss the Duke fake rape case, Mr. Nifong!)
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To: abb; Alia; AntiGuv; AmishDude; Bogeygolfer; BossLady; Brytani; beyondashadow; bwteim; Carling; ...
DukeLax Ping!
4 posted on 08/04/2006 2:27:49 PM PDT by Howlin (Pres.Bush ought to be ashamed of himself for allowing foreign countries right on our borders!!~~Zook)
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To: abb

5 posted on 08/04/2006 2:31:35 PM PDT by maggief
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To: maggief

dammit! I've misplaced Jakki's myspace link. u have?

6 posted on 08/04/2006 2:35:00 PM PDT by abb (The Dinosaur Media: A One-Way Medium in a Two-Way World)
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To: abb

Jakki O'Knight

7 posted on 08/04/2006 2:45:58 PM PDT by maggief
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To: abb

here 'tis...

8 posted on 08/04/2006 2:50:44 PM PDT by abb (The Dinosaur Media: A One-Way Medium in a Two-Way World)
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To: maggief

has anyone created a backup webpage of Jakki in case she pull it down?

9 posted on 08/04/2006 2:51:47 PM PDT by abb (The Dinosaur Media: A One-Way Medium in a Two-Way World)
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More pics:

10 posted on 08/04/2006 2:52:55 PM PDT by maggief
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To: abb; Protect the Bill of Rights

Not me. Check the thread link I posted above. Someone may have.

11 posted on 08/04/2006 2:54:16 PM PDT by maggief
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To: abb
"an audibly shaken Jakki, who uses only her first name and a different gender while speaking for her cousin and family,"

Fixed it.
12 posted on 08/04/2006 3:05:15 PM PDT by Locomotive Breath (In the shuffling madness)
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To: TommyDale

Sounds like Jakki has been exposed - as a liar at least. In the legendary words of Kim, the whole $2 million offer sounded like "a crock" from the beginning.

13 posted on 08/04/2006 3:13:55 PM PDT by SarahUSC
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To: SarahUSC

And now the question becomes just who solicited a bribe from whom?

14 posted on 08/04/2006 3:14:58 PM PDT by abb (The Dinosaur Media: A One-Way Medium in a Two-Way World)
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To: abb

15 posted on 08/04/2006 3:17:44 PM PDT by abb (The Dinosaur Media: A One-Way Medium in a Two-Way World)
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To: gopheraj


16 posted on 08/04/2006 3:21:06 PM PDT by gopheraj
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To: abb
17 posted on 08/04/2006 3:22:39 PM PDT by maggief
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To: maggief

And we ain't talking about no Bob Seeger song, either...

18 posted on 08/04/2006 3:26:04 PM PDT by abb (The Dinosaur Media: A One-Way Medium in a Two-Way World)
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To: abb

Breakdown, takedown, your busted!

19 posted on 08/04/2006 3:33:31 PM PDT by abb (The Dinosaur Media: A One-Way Medium in a Two-Way World)
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To: abb
  1. "...insists that she was told by the alleged victim of a $2 million hush money attempt to have the woman back away from her charges,..."

I do not have any problem believing AV lied to her cuz.

  1. saying that the accuser denied the claim to police when asked days after the explosive story came out in June.

I do not have any problem believing AV lied to the cops

I do not have any problem believing Jakki lied to evryone

Drag queens have a low pay scale.

Jakki is playing Cash Michaels and the media for the fools they are. They all got caught with their pants down and no toilet paper.

20 posted on 08/04/2006 4:13:13 PM PDT by Protect the Bill of Rights
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