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Mangum's fate in jury's hands

Posted November 21, 2013
Updated November 22, 2013

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— Jurors deliberated for more than three hours Thursday afternoon without reaching a verdict in a Durham murder trial that has attracted nationwide attention because of the defendant's notorious history.

Crystal Mangum, 34, is charged with murder in the April 3, 2011, stabbing of Reginald Daye. She has claimed she was defending herself from domestic violence. Daye, 46, died 10 days later of complications at Duke University Hospital.

Deliberations are set to resume Friday morning.

Mangum made national headlines in March 2006 when she claimed that three players on the Duke University lacrosse team trapped her inside a bathroom when 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.

The Duke case was barely mentioned during the trial. Superior Court Judge Paul Ridgeway prohibited prosecutors from mentioning the case, aside from trying to impeach Mangum's credibility, but Durham County Assistant District Attorney Charlene Franks made only a passing reference to the case during her cross-examination of Mangum on Wednesday.

Mangum tearfully described how Daye flew into a jealous rage when she started talking to a police officer she knew as the couple returned to their Durham apartment after a party.

She said he cursed her, hit her and choked her, then kicked open a bathroom door as she tried to hide and dragged her out by her hair.

"I tried to push him off, but he was too strong," she testified. "I grabbed a knife and poked him in the side.

"I was just trying to survive. I felt like Reginald was trying to kill me."

A police investigator who interviewed Daye in the hospital before he died testified Tuesday that he told her he had ordered Mangum out of the apartment because he was tired of her bringing other men over. He acknowledged kicking open the bathroom door and dragging her by her hair, but he said he was was trying to get away from her during the argument when she stabbed him.

Defense attorney Daniel Meier noted during his closing argument Thursday that Mangum had a history of abusive relationships, and there was no disagreement that Daye kicked the bathroom door and dragged her by her hair that night.

"For us, this case is about Crystal Mangum and the evening of April 3. For the state, this case is about THE Crystal Mangum and everything that comes along with that," Meier told the seven-man, five-woman jury.

Franks countered by telling jurors that Mangum was the abuser in the relationship with Daye, much like she had threatened a previous boyfriend with a knife 14 months before Daye was killed.

"The defendant is a killer," Franks said. "You've got to look at all of her conduct as a whole."

61 Comments

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  • Setnitst8 Nov 22, 2013

    good she deserved what she got! GUILTY!

  • westernwake1 Nov 22, 2013

    Verdict is in.

    GUILTY !!!!

  • zile1porkey Nov 22, 2013

    The problem with posters is you don't listen to facts you post your feelings and have hatred for a people you don't even know you respond to what the news media tells. You ask that people pray and cross their fingers for a guilty verdict how sad.

  • Lightfoot3 Nov 22, 2013

    “It's almost 3:15. What's taking them so long?” - pmck


    Maybe they are wrestling with reasonable doubt. The dude stated he kicked in the bathroom door and drug her out by the hair.

  • A person Nov 22, 2013

    Perfectly legal, but the degrees of separation from the actual incident complicate matters.

    Not really. If she had not stabbed him, he would never have gotten an infection. Kind of like if I hit you with my car and you die 5 years later from complications associated to the injury, I can still be charged with involuntary manslaughter

  • scubagirl2 Nov 22, 2013

    fingers crossed for guilty!
    AND prison

  • Setnitst8 Nov 22, 2013

    I hope they don't pull a Casey Anthony jury on us. I think we all know she is BAD news for society. Sometimes I question the justice system when a jury like the one in the Casey Anthony come back with a not guilty??

    You just never know in Durham.

  • jurydoc Nov 22, 2013

    How does "poking" someone in the side kill them? ncteacher22

    Actually, the victim did not die of the stab wound. He died of an INFECTION he contracted while in the hospital. This could be what's complicating deliberations. It's the ol' "but for" prosecution. But for the stab wound he wouldn't have been in the hospital to get the infection. Perfectly legal, but the degrees of separation from the actual incident complicate matters.

  • Mo Blues Nov 21, 2013

    Protip: The so-called stand-your-ground law was NEVER invoked or debated in the Zimerman/Martin trial. Nice try, though.

  • westernwake1 Nov 21, 2013

    Let's hope we get a conviction on Friday morning by mid-day.

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