Friday, June 22, 2007

Justice for Mr. Nifong -- and others

This letter to the editor appeared in today's Washington Post:

While I don't disagree with the disbarment of Durham County (N.C.) District Attorney Michael B. Nifong, as reported in the June 17 news article "Prosecutor in Duke Case Gives Up His Law License," I wonder whether he would have faced the same public outcry had the students he prosecuted been poor, black and from, say, North Carolina A&T rather than being wealthy and from Duke University.

The news is full of examples of poor or black defendants who are convicted, only to have those convictions overturned because of prosecutorial misconduct similar to Mr. Nifong's, such as the withholding of exculpatory evidence. Yet rarely do we hear of the prosecutors in those cases facing disciplinary action for their clear misconduct.

I wonder how much media coverage would have been given to three young black men who had been falsely charged with the rape of a stripper. I wonder where the high moral dudgeon exhibited by our pundits and politicians is when we discover that black men who have sat on death row for 10 years or longer are freed when the misconduct of their prosecutors is revealed.

Let us hope that the next time one of these cases is adjudicated, the prosecutor gets the same justice that Michael Nifong got.



Anonymous said...

Mr. Heath, not all Brady violations are created equal. To compare every Brady violation to Nifong is ridiculous.

Just another bit of sophistry from the pro-murderer crowd.

Anonymous said...

How true. While Nifong certainly deserves prosecution, isn't it ironic that the pro-murder commentator used the same sort of race baiting narrative as Nifong and his supporters used to condemn the lacrosse players for being white and wealthy?