Local News

Lacrosse Defense Attorney Concerned Over City Manager's Actions

Posted May 15, 2006

— A defense attorney for one of three suspects charged in the Duke lacrosse rape investigation filed a hearing notice on Monday asking for the court to hear several motions when his client appears in court on Thursday.

In one motion, defense attorney Kirk Osborn, who represents lacrosse player Reade Seligamann, asks that the Durham Police Department turn over all notes, tapes and information relating to the case to the Durham County District Attorney's office.

The court document says attorneys are concerned because Durham City Manager Patrick Baker has been interviewing police officers and may have pressured them to "get their stories straight."

Osborn, told WRAL on Monday that he was very concerned by Baker's actions, that they were unusual, and that he wanted to make sure the evidence is preserved.

Baker, during Durham's City Council meeting on Monday night, denied the assertion.

"I'm not asking them to get their stories straight at all," Baker said. "Certainly, as the chief executive officer of this organization, I feel like it's my duty to this Council and this community to make sure I'm in touch with what's going on."

Talked about the court filing at the City Council meeting, he said he interviewed officers after a Duke University report came out saying they had not taken the alleged victim's rape allegations seriously in the beginning.

Baker said he determined through his interviews that officers had in fact taken the allegation seriously all along.

The victim, a 27-year-old exotic dancer who is enrolled at nearby North Carolina Central University, has told police that she was gang-raped, sodomized and beaten by three lacrosse players at a March 13 party where she was hired to perform.

Two other men also face charges connected to the case: Collin Finnerty, 19, and Dave Evans, 23.


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