Published April 12, 2006
DNA testing failed to connect any members of the Duke University lacrosse team to the alleged rape of a stripper, attorneys for the athletes said Monday.
Citing DNA test results delivered by the state crime lab to police and prosecutors a few hours earlier, the attorneys said the test results prove their clients did not sexually assault and beat a stripper hired to perform at a March 13 team party.
No charges have been filed in the case. Read more.
Speak Out! In light of this recent revelation, what are your thoughts on the alleged Duke rape scandal?
E-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know what YOU think!
Here's what people in the news are saying:
"There is no DNA evidence that shows she was touched by any of these boys." — Attorney Joe Cheshire, who represents one of the team's captains
"I believe a sexual assault took place. I'm not saying it's over. If that's what they expect, they will be sadly disappointed." — District Attorney Mike Nifong
"The truth is if you speak to crime lab directors, they will tell you that in only a relatively small number of cases is there any DNA evidence." — Peter Neufeld, co-founder of the Innocence Project
"I know the kids on the team and I know they're innocent." — Robert Archer, father of a member of the Duke lacrosse team
Here's what FOX Fans are saying:
"Everyone is so quick to judge and convict these players when it is white privileged athletes versus a less privileged black female. Since no one in the public knows what really happened. Would there be the same uproar if it is determined that the alleged victim lied? Will the story receive the same media attention if the players are found innocent? Will they at least get an apology for suspending players, ending their season, forcing their coach to resign?" — Billy
"If the alleged victim accused the boys of rape and that didn't happen, how can her credibility be any good? In my opinion, she needs to come clean and tell the truth. Something isamiss with her story!" — Marsha (Greenville, SC)
"I think this young lady should be made an example of. She should have to serve time in prison for the grief that she has caused. I would love to sit on that jury." — G.C.
"It is absolutely unbelievable how these kids are GUILTY until proven INNOCENT by the public. This is ruining lives. If she is lying, charges should be filed against her." — Mitch (Stockton, CA)
"Just another example of an alleged rape case where individuals are guilty until proven innocent. I hope Nancy Grace, and some feminist groups at Duke, enjoy cleaning off their toes with their mouths." — John (Spokane, WA)
"I do not agree that she is a ‘victim.’ She is presently an ‘accuser.’ As all of us would want in a court of law, the lacrosse team players should be treated as innocent until proven guilty. The coach and players have lost so much already without even a conviction! If someone is found innocent, the accuser should have to pay for their legal expenses. Unfortunately, even if they are found innocent in a court of law, they'll forever live with people questioning their innocence." — Debbie (New York)
"I believe every one rushed to judgment of these boys on the team, and because she was black and they were white, it’s been made to be racially motivated. But the fact remains, if there is no DNA, then it didn't happen. I believe once the facts come out, it maybe more like she wanted more money for dancing and when they said no she figured she would get back at them by making up the allegations. As for this DA, he must have his own agenda. The coach should get his job back and every one on the team deserves a public apology from him and the woman who made the false allegations." — Howie (Glastonbury, CT)
"The DA's office has only one duty — to the truth. If the case cannot be substantiated, much less proved, then he should speak out loudly in defense of the accused. If, however, he finds other evidence to prove their guilt, then he should prosecute them. He is not in office to win political points. If there is a rape victim, then go after the rapist. If there is no rape victim, then he should go after the accuser." — Noel (Woodland Hills, CA)
"What appears now to clearly be a false allegation has wasted time and resources. If you want to reduce this kind of waste then you must punish the false accuser. Does our PC nation have the moral gumption to quit making excuses for bad behavior from certain groups (black females in this case)?" — Chris (Cornelius, NC)
"This whole situation is such a shame. The lives of 47 people have been ruined by this woman. Every day new evidence comes out to support the team. The only reason Mike Nifong is not dropping the case is political advantage. Elections are in May and he can’t afford to drop the case if he wants to win. When this is all over, the stripper should be jailed for all the harm she has caused." — John
“There has clearly been some improper behavior (regardless of legality) on the part of the Duke lacrosse team. I believe the punishment to the team so far was appropriate by the administration, regardless of the legal outcome. That said, it also appears that the current evidence does not support a rape or sexual assault charge and the team and the entire Duke community must be somewhat relieved. The DA should bring this case to closure quickly. It is sad the stripper/alleged victim put herself into such a situation to begin with. I applaud the actions of the university administration to investigate and review the handling of this case from all angles. The administration leadership should be commended.” — George (Duke class of ’89)
“Enough is enough. The ‘liberal elite’ and perceived ‘disenfranchised’ are exploiting the drunken, rude behavior of mistake-prone young white men for their own political agenda of attacking the white male as the purveyors of all of society's ills. There is NO evidence of a sexual crime in any nature committed by these young fools other than the outlandish claim by one individual. The DA is blinded with the presumption of guilt and is trying to manufacture a case against these clowns when none exists.” — Jake (Raleigh, NC)
“In this case, I think the lacrosse team should not be singled out. Were the two strippers and the team the only ones at the party? Those women could have been attacked by anyone at the party, so why have we not heard anything about other possible suspects?” — Justin
“If there is no evidence of rape and or sexual abuse, then the players should be cleared and the women making these allegations should be prosecuted. We just can’t have people falsely accuse others and then get away with it.” — Ed (Central Point, OR)
“I don't know if the Duke boys are innocent or not, however, it is interesting that there is ‘reverence’ for the results of DNA testing. DNA results often led to the freedom of already convicted rapists or murderers. For the Duke lacrosse team, some are saying the DNA evidence does not matter or irrelevant.” — Bill (Rancho Palos Verdes, CA)
“I hope this young lady is prepared to help rebuild and restore the lives she has single-handedly ruined. I assume that anytime a black woman wants to accuse 42 white men of anything this horrendous, we're just supposed to read and believe it. The left wing media has already rushed to help ensure that everyone knows that she's telling the whole truth and that everyone else is either lying or involved in the cover-up. It' s nauseating. This woman has no leg to stand on; not one shred of factual evidence! She needs to pay.” — Kent (Trophy Club, TX)
“The defense lawyers, the DA and the talking experts on the TV and radio should belt up and let the evidence take the case to where it should go. The victim and the suspects are not being respected by any of the above. Each appears to be posturing at the expense of the people involved, the university and the city.” — Joe
“There may be doubt at Duke, but not much doubt in the minds of the American people. It appears that another whitewash of spoiled rich kids is in the offing. I am far — way far — from being one of Jesse Jackson's supporters, but this is a situation in which he may be able to help see justice accomplished. I'm actually glad to see him there and speaking out.” — G.F. Beavan
“It’s not a crime to hire dancers to perform at parties. I’m not saying that a crime was not committed, however, in cases like this, everyone is exposed to some extent. Maybe, if they were to line the team up at the station and have the girl point out which guys were involved, then maybe they could focus the investigation on those few. Then again, her allegations against the team could have been fabricated for personal gain.” — Sam (Fort Rucker, AL)
“I think the DNA proves the so-called 'rape' didn’t go how the accuser claims, but it doesn’t put the boys in the clear. Furthermore, I don’t think the handling of the case by the media or the university has anything to do with race or class, but rather with the accuser’s profession. The best way to protect yourself from a sexual attack is to not make yourself vulnerable. If you provocatively put yourself, half-naked, in a house full of drunk college boys, what do you think is going to happen?” — Amanda (Tacoma, WA)
"We are tired of these guys always being able to get away with it." — Carol (Kirkland, WA)
“I think that we need to get the facts straight before jumping to conclusions. The allegations do not add up. Has this become another black/white issue because she was black and the guys were white? What is going to happen if we find out that this woman was lying? The coach quit, the team members and the school have suffered, and what will happen to the woman? Will she be charged?” — Chris (North Carolina)
“It is time for an apology to the students and the university. They are the victims in this matter, not the stripper. She is the one who says she was bruised when she showed up at the party, left the party and then demanded to be let back in and then hid in the bathroom and cried rape. It is time the spotlight goes on her and away from the innocent students. I hope she is satisfied with what she has done to the reputation of not only the players, but also the university and the town of Durham as well.” — Jennifer
“We know that it’s guilty until proven innocent when it comes to rape accusations. What we don’t know, however, is whether the DA would have exonerated the accused if it had been African American males accused of raping a Caucasian woman. You cannot have a sexual assault without some transferal of DNA, especially if there are three people being accused.” — Chip (Washington DC)
“I think this age of political correctness and sensitivity training has caused this. Now you have 46 potentially innocent guys who have been punished unfairly. What has happened to innocent until proven guilty? Even if the three were guilty, why would you punish the other 43? The school overreacted because they were scared they would be accused of being prejudiced. Now I think the president of the school should resign and they should rehire the lacrosse coach.” — Bert
“Drop the charges and let it go. It seems like the race card plays a big part in this situation. What is a college girl doing as an exotic dancer anyway? It seems this could have been a shake down.” — Edgard
“The problem comes from cases where women cry rape, and in those cases that prove to be a false report, or even when they admit to lying, there is no recourse for their actions. The DA simply walks away without so much as an apology to the defendants.” — Mike (California)
"It would appear that possibly someone saw a 'golden opportunity' to stick it to some folks who might have some money. People are freed and convicted on DNA evidence. The DNA evidence submitted should clear the players." — Garth
"I don't feel anyone should ever have to go through what the young lady says happened to her, but the realization of problems within this Duke lacrosse team is a silver lining. This is not the first episode of trouble for this team, and it took this incident to bring all this to light. The athletic director (and/or school officials) have known of these types of problems, but failed to act until someone was seriously hurt. This is an all too familiar scenario, and it’s not just at Duke University. It’s high time to stop this foolishness." — Mark (South Carolina)
"I in no way condone the actions of the players in hiring an exotic dancer. That action alone is reprehensible in my opinion. But if the dancer did make false accusations, then she should be charged and prosecuted as vigorously as the media has pursued the players and coach." — Carolyn (Tampa, FL)
"Sounds like District Attorney Mike Nifong has a personal axe to grind in this case." — James
"When this is all over, the team should demand and receive apologies from Duke's president and the local 'activists' who naturally assumed the worst, although no formal charges had or have been made. Further, the team should receive compensation for damages to individual and team reputations. Finally, the University should mandate a refresher course in constitutional rights for its faculty and students. That said, having observed the decided tilt to the left at Duke over the last three decades, I'd encourage the team not to hold its collective breath." — Daniel (Duke '65)
"I feel this case is no different from the Kobe case — both women seem to be lying for profit. Everyone suffers because of stuff like that, and all it does is incite racial intolerance on both sides." — John (Texas)
"Without DNA evidence, there is no evidence of a sexual assault. Although there was inappropriate behavior, the team has been vindicated and they should have their season, and coach, reinstated. This was always about money. This woman knew that creating a story about some prep school kids would lead to big money in a civil suit." — Evan (Washington, DC)
"It seems that a woman with questionable credentials — who has also made serious allegations against the Duke lacrosse team — has split the Durham community." — Phil (Mebane, NC)
"As a woman, it is easy for me to automatically assume that a group of young, rich and spoiled athletes can, and did, gang up on a defenseless girl. I now realize that I want justice for the innocent, whether that is the girl or the team." — Rachel (Missouri)
"Looks like this could be turning into a witch-hunt. For the DA to proceed with the case, after the DNA evidence showed the Duke players didn't touch the girl, makes it appear his agenda is something other than finding the truth." — Red (Omaha, NE)