With the news that the DNA tests did not tie any lacrosse players to the
alleged rape of a stripper, the whole situation enters a new stage.Â
District attorney Mike Nifong says he still believes an assault took place and
will continue his investigation.Â But according to some .learned people, it
will be much more difficult to advance the case.
The known evidence now consists of the victim's assertion and the results of
the medical tests, which allegedly showed injuries which were consistent with
When asked earlier what he would think if there were no DNA matches, Nifong
said that the assailants might have used condoms, but that obviously wouldn't
account for the lack of alien skin under the accuser's fingernails despite the
fact that she "was clawing at one of the suspect's arms
in an attempt to breathe while being strangled" (and if she
scratched hard, one would reasonably expect to find scratches on the assailants,
but that hasn't been publicly discussed yet).
Given the curious 911 calls, the legal record of the accuser, and the
discussed-but-not-yet-seen time-stamped photos which supposedly show bruises on
the accuser's body and her in an apparently intoxicated state, any defense
attorney would jump all over those things.Â
Still, Nifong asserted after the release of the DNA results that "there are no new developments" in the case.
Unless there's something else, the case will come down to her word about who
allegedly raped her and the results of the rape kit.
And after that, it'll come down to Durham politics, which is to say that the
fault lines of Durham which have come clear in recent days - race, class, and
gender - will make a jury decision almost impossible.
The scandal has become a Rorschach test for whatever you'd like to project