State News

Appeals court allows Duke lacrosse coach's suit

Posted September 1, 2009
Updated September 2, 2009

Mike Pressler, the former coach of the Duke lacrosse team

— A North Carolina appeals court has cleared Duke University's former lacrosse coach to pursue a slander lawsuit against the school and its former spokesman.

The Court of Appeals decided Tuesday that a trial court correctly ruled that Michael Pressler's obligation to arbitrate his slander and libel claims was voided by his settlement agreement with Duke.

The settlement came after Pressler was forced to resign following a stripper's false accusations in 2006 that three players raped her at a team party. The three players later were declared innocent by state prosecutors.

The ruling means Pressler can pursue punitive damages and other penalties for disparaging comments he said former Duke spokesman John Burness twice made to the media. The settlement included a provision that neither side would disparage the other.

"This gives Mike the opportunity to go to court and prove he was slandered by Duke," said Pressler's attorney, Don Strickland. "Mike is pleased with the decision, and he's looking forward to vindicating his name in the Duke community and throughout the country."

Michael Schoenfeld, Duke's vice president for public affairs and government relations, said the university "intends to defend this case whether in arbitration or in the courts."

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  • Sweet Butterfly Kisses Sep 1, 2009

    "I am praying that he will not receive one dime. Instead I hope he owes the court for wasting their time."...Professor

    _Please Consult Your Physician....Immediately...

    Thumbs-Up Coach!!......

  • twc Sep 1, 2009

    This is great news! The coach is one of the totally innocent victims of this whole mess.

    Duke cowered down without the backbone to defend itself until guilt or innocence was decided. Coach Pressler deserves to be paid for the suffering he had to endure. Another good bit of news is his attorney is Don Strickland, one of the best.

    Some who have never had to pay and probably never will is Crystal Mangum for starting it with all her lies. Stripper is really just a nice way of saying what she really is.

    And don't forget Houston Baker, the eloquent-writing Duke professor that stained the names of Duke athletes. He just moved away and hides behind his ability to write. Nary an apology from him!

  • Adelinthe Sep 1, 2009

    Professor - "That would be the school's job of filing a lawsuite for slander."

    It was an official of the school that spread the slander while on the school's payroll.

    And the school perpetuated it by firing the coach before waiting for the outcome of an investigation.

    God bless.

    RB

  • Adelinthe Sep 1, 2009

    professor - "I am praying that he will not receive one dime. Instead I hope he owes the court for wasting their time."

    Figures!

    So you think it's ok for officials of an organization to privately AND publicly condemn someone WITHOUT the benefit of a judge and jury.

    God bless.

    RB

  • Adelinthe Sep 1, 2009

    "Duke Unv. had a guilt ridden reaction after the accusation from the phony "rape" victim,now they must pay for it in a court of law. The Duke Unv. person back then in charge of PR did the worst job imaginable."

    AMEN!!!

    It was awful what Duke did to that coach and those young men, and then in turn the whole team suspending it for that season - when NOTHING occurred.

    God bless.

    RB

  • See Chart Sep 1, 2009

    Duke Unv. had a guilt ridden reaction after the accusation from the phony "rape" victim,now they must pay for it in a court
    of law.
    The Duke Unv. person back then in charge of PR did
    the worst job imaginable.

  • chance Sep 1, 2009

    Good for you Coach!! He deserves it.

    Oh ... btw ... PROFESSOR definitely needs to go back to school to learn some proper grammer. lol

    PROFESSOR SAID ... "Crystal Mangums deserve something in the form of cash" ... "If these boys hired a stripper, what else was they up too?" ... "Young girls you should stay away from these young men. Marry one and you will having nothing but trouble. They will hang around a club with strippers while you are home alone."

    Yes girls ... it's MUCH better just to become a stripper than to marry somebody who may have hired one for a college frat party. lol

    Maybe some day this world may actually start to make sense!

  • Professor Sep 1, 2009

    coach to pursue a slander lawsuit against the school and its former spokesman.

    That would be the school's job of filing a lawsuite for slander. Why do the coach think this is his job to do? I guess he would like his job back.

  • Professor Sep 1, 2009

    I am praying that he will not receive one dime. Instead I hope he owes the court for wasting their time.

  • prn13norm Sep 1, 2009

    He should sue Al Sharpton, Jessie Jackson and the Black Panthers as well as the 88 professor who signed the infamous petition.

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