Local News

Carson autopsy will be released

Posted June 11, 2008

— The autopsy report on the slain student body president at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill will be released June 30. (Should Carson's autopsy be released?)

Orange County District Attorney Jim Woodall said Wednesday he does not intend to ask that the report remain sealed after that date, and neither do the lawyers for the two defendants charged in her death.

"These are public records," Woodall said. "I only requested 60 days so some final parts of the investigation can be completed."

Woodall had originally asked the report detailing Eve Marie Carson's death remain under seal to allow investigators time to complete interviews. Releasing the details of Carson's death before then, he said, would compromise the investigation.

Last month, attorneys for The News & Observer of Raleigh filed a motion opposing Woodall's request to seal the results, arguing the report is a public record and should be open to review.

The newspaper's attorney said Wednesday he had withdrawn that motion, and a hearing on the issue scheduled for Wednesday was canceled.

"In light of Mr. Woodall's representations, however, and the imminent expiration of your order, we see no reason to take up the court's time and energy to deal with an issue that apparently will become moot in a few days," attorney Hugh Stevens wrote in a letter to Superior Court Judge Allen Baddour.

Carson was found dead on a residential street about a half-mile near campus on March 5.

Police responded to reports of gunshots, but they have never disclosed how the 22-year-old died.

Laurence Alvin Lovette Jr., 17, and Demario James Atwater, 21, are charged with murder in Carson’s death.

The Durham Herald-Sun is also fighting to get six search warrants in the case unsealed.

Baddour ruled the documents should stay sealed because affidavits attached to them contain descriptions and details about the case that could lead to the identification of confidential informants

A hearing on that is scheduled for June 27.


This story is closed for comments.

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  • anne53ozzy Jun 12, 2008

    last one for me....this report will be a matter of public record at the trial. I believe the shock value will be distracting at that time, perhaps. There will be no pics of "naked girl", as earlier surmised.
    I think an informed public is not a threat to anything. if nothing else, it will make a jury less likely to be swayed by this report in either direction.
    The jurors represent all of us in any action. Only in rare cases are documents kept from public access. I think most of us would like to know this info if for no other reason than to better understand how and why this happened. Probably an unreasonable way to protect ourselves or our kids but such as it is, it seems to be all we have at this juncture w this particular crime....Sad and sorry for all concerned...Answer?
    There isn't one except maybe for this country to spend more on kids and family support than on bombers.
    "What if the Air Force had to hold a candy drive to buy a bomber?"

  • anne53ozzy Jun 12, 2008

    to dws...you are right and I am not suggesting we run...I am so much more aware than ever before that this country that I love (Army brat of several generations) seems to be letting down its guard on the neighborhood front.
    If I thought my kids were going to live in the trenches, as it were...I would not be running....I would be gently herding my young to a safer nest.
    Maybe just the country...away from the apparent group-oriented crime of the city...but then, they have to go to college somewhere, right?
    UNC grad and all...this area is becoming a scarey place to live.
    I love it but am not opposed to leaving if something is not done about this trend in the Durham area and elsewhere.

  • mondosinistro Jun 12, 2008

    And so now we have yet another lurker in the shadows, who calls him(or her)self st295x98, adding to the chorus of innuendo, again without a shred of facts--and this time, without a specific claim, just that "people are going to be outraged." Who? At whom will the finger point in the latest scenario (whatever it is)? The criminal justice system? Some group that serves as a code word for the whole black population of Durham? The gangs (where I think it belongs, along with the 2 perps)? The rumor-mongers who, I think, put this idea in their heads in the first place? Maybe Eve's parents and educators, who gave her the silly notion that she could walk around at night without packing heat? Maybe Eve herself, for some drug use? Or for some supposed racist behavior in high school? Or maybe being in some love triangle--hey, we haven't covered that one, have we?

    Let's just calm down and see what comes out in the reports and then the trial. Patience is hard, but we have no choice.

  • bomanicous Jun 11, 2008

    This is why I don't read or buy the N&O, they're just sleez-bag hacks in media.

    Nothing good can come out of releasing this or most autopsies, they just make it harder for the prosecution and jury. I'm curious about the case. I would like to know if she was in the car when they were at the atm and store but I'd prefer to preserve the facts before the media tries to sway the case like they're doing in Wilson. I can wait for the truth because it's way more important than the media's agenda.

  • st295x98 Jun 11, 2008

    There will be a group of people that are going to be enraged when some of the facts of this case start coming out.... The Autopsy release is just going to be the jumping off point.

  • mondosinistro Jun 11, 2008

    Concerns for the family--they'll be hurt by gruesome physical details? You really think they care about that?! Findings of drugs as a factor--that could be different. That would bother me too. So far, no substantiation. AND--don't read more into it than said. Suppose there was some drug found, don't assume it meant a drug deal that night. I discount it anyway, as I do those "head full of PC ideas and no street smarts" comments, the "privileged white flaunt" talk, and the other ugly stuff from "sources" in the shadows. (She gets it from the right and left, but mostly from way below.) If she were an addict, could she have accomplished what we know of? How to support a habit during summers abroad? Doesn't wash.

    Anyway, the immediate issue is so small. Report released no earlier than originally planned--how has N&O won anything? It won't mess up the trial. The powers that be won't LET it. This was one who knew people in high places. Did the killers have any idea what they were starting?

  • mondosinistro Jun 11, 2008

    Amazed at ideas expressed here over and over. So many just don't want to know, or the rest of us to. You think we seek amusement? "Let her rest in peace" you wail. Why bother having a trial? Just turn 'em loose, move on. After all, nothing will bring her back.

    It matters how it happened. The results could tell about gangs, drugs, race, sexism, criminal justice system, harmful rumors, godknowswhat else. Since this happened (almost close enough to hear it), I've struggled with why this bothered me so much. Slowly I'm starting to understand. (continued...)

  • k557451 Jun 11, 2008

    Once again the media demonstrates that the public is the least of its concerns. Maybe it is time to relfect on what the founders of this country really meant by "freedom of the press."
    Others have said it so well, the only people who need to see this are those actually involved in the judicial process.
    The people of NC have to start showing, by the power of the purse, that they want a press that reports and not makes news.

  • FloydTurbo Jun 11, 2008

    I was responding to the multiple declarations that "it doesn't matter because WE KNOW what happened .....".

    Very few people actually "know" what happened and the commonly held assumptions of the events of that tragic night will be debunked by the "facts". NO No No .... the goggled-eyes loonies claiming Eve was somehow "involved" are "flying black helicopters" but even level-heads are incorrect on this one. The "facts" will effect security assumptions about Chapel Hill.

    I don't care about autopsies or gory pictures .... NONE of which the N&O ever has or ever intended to print BTW. If obeying "laws" is left to everyone's choice of "which laws" we have anarchy. Excuse me for hoping that doesn't happen.

  • Made In USA Jun 11, 2008

    I feel the media is over-stepping their boundaries by demanding all of the reports in a rushing manner. After all, aren't the courts working on a conviction? As far as the search warrants being released, I think that if there is any chance of damaging the case for the prosecutors or risking the safety of those who have come forward with valuable information, then no...don't release the search warrant reports.

    My last concern is the family. All of this newly-released reports will be like ripping a bandaid off of a severe wound that will take forever to heal.