December 31, 2006

NIFONG UPDATE: The Washington Post editorializes:

“THE PROSECUTOR has more control over life, liberty and reputation than any other person in America. His discretion is tremendous. He can have citizens investigated, and, if he is that kind of person, he can have this done to the tune of public statements and veiled or unveiled intimations.”

Robert H. Jackson, then the U.S. attorney general, spoke those words to a group of federal prosecutors in 1940. But they ring disturbingly true today about the conduct of Durham County, N.C., District Attorney Michael B. Nifong in prosecuting three Duke University lacrosse players. Just before Christmas, Mr. Nifong dropped rape charges after the accuser said she “could no longer testify with certainty that it occurred.” But the three men remain charged with kidnapping and first-degree sexual offense, which carry equally severe penalties. Mr. Nifong should drop those charges as well.

Read the whole thing.