Durham, N.C. — The Durham woman who falsely accused three Duke University lacrosse players of rape in 2006 can represent herself against a murder charge in a separate case, a judge ruled Wednesday.
Crystal Mangum, 34, is charged in the April 2011 death of Reginald Daye, 46, who was stabbed with a kitchen knife during an argument at his Durham apartment, police said. They had been dating for about a month at the time of his death.
Superior Court Judge Jim Hardin said Mangum could act as her own attorney because she disagreed with how defense attorney Woody Vann was handling the case. Hardin then appointed Vann to assist Mangum.
Mangum remains in the Durham County jail under a $200,000 bond.
In March 2006, she claimed three players on the lacrosse team trapped her inside a bathroom at 610 N. Buchanan Blvd., where she was performing as a stripper at a team party, and raped and sexually assaulted her.
Her story about the incident was so inconsistent that Attorney General Roy Cooper later declared the players innocent, saying there was no credible evidence against them.
In February 2010, police arrested Mangum after an altercation between her and a different boyfriend. In that incident, she was accused of assaulting the man in front of her children and setting some of his clothes on fire.
She was later convicted of child abuse, injury to personal property and resisting a public officer in the case, but prosecutors dismissed an arson charge after a jury couldn't reach a verdict.