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Witness: Mangum home had broken knives, broken door

Posted November 18, 2013

— Several knives, including four with the blade broken off, were found in Crystal Mangum's Durham apartment two years ago after she stabbed her boyfriend, a former police evidence technician said Monday.

Mangum, 34, is charged with murder in the April 3, 2011, stabbing of Reginald Daye. He died 10 days later of complications at Duke University Hospital.

She maintains the stabbing was a case of self-defense.

In the third day of testimony in Mangum's trial, Almon Brown, who worked for the Durham Police Department in 2011, spent about two hours Monday morning showing jurors photos taken in the apartment and displaying evidence he recovered there.

Steak knives and other kitchen knives were found in the living room and bedroom, Brown said. Some knife blades had red stains on them, and broken blades were found on a sofa, the bedroom floor and counters, he said.

Among the dozens of photos he took that night were some that showed a bathroom door knocked off its hinges, clumps of hair on the bathroom floor and a mattress and scratches on Mangum's face and hand.

Defense attorney Daniel Meier said in his opening statement last week that Daye kicked open the bathroom door during an argument, dragged Mangum out by her hair and held her down on the bed. Mangum stabbed Daye once in the side, Meier said, in an effort to get out of the apartment.

Daye's nephew told police that Daye and Mangum had been arguing over rent money and said that Daye had said Mangum grabbed the cash and left after the stabbing, other witnesses said previously.

Officer Curtis Knight, who was at the apartment complex on an unrelated call that night, testified Monday that Daye yelled, "Crystal, give me my $700," as the couple argued outside the apartment. Knight said he told Daye that he could take out warrants against Mangum for theft, but Daye told him not to bother, and the couple went back inside.

Cpl. Leslie Bond, a domestic violence investigator for the Durham Police Department, interviewed Daye in the hospital after the stabbing. He told her that Mangum had "disrespected him by bringing other guys to the house," she testified.

Daye said neither he nor Mangum wanted to stop arguing, Bond said, but that, when he tried to leave the apartment because she was threatening him, she stabbed him in the back.

Aykia Hanes, who lived next door to Daye, testified that she often heard him arguing with Mangum – as well as the thumps against her apartment wall when things were being thrown around next door. On the night of the stabbing, she said there was "a lot of yelling and screaming from both of them."

Hanes said she looked out the peephole of her front door and saw Daye leave and return, which then was followed by more arguing. She said she never heard any cries for help, but Daye did yell, "Leave me alone. Get the hell out."

"I just thought it was their normal thing," she testified.

On Friday, Mangum's former boyfriend, Milton Walker, reluctantly testified that she had threatened him with a knife during a February 2010 argument and that two police officers had to restrain her.

Durham County Assistant District Attorney Charlene Franks elicited more testimony Monday regarding the 2010 case from Bond and Sgt. John Tyler, who said Mangum "just snapped" and began threatening Walker in front of him and other officers.

Mangum made national headlines in March 2006 when she claimed that three players on the Duke University 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.

Prosecutors are prohibited from mentioning the Duke lacrosse case during the trial, with the possible exception of challenging Mangum's credibility as a witness.

12 Comments

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  • Lightfoot3 Nov 19, 10:24 a.m.

    "Why in the world would a witness even say this if it's not blood, except to bring in unnecessary drama?" - paulej


    That's all it is. DAs are often as corrupt and unethical as some of the people they are trying to convict. It's a show and they are hoping the jury is stupid enough to buy it. All the DA needs to do is prove it wasn't self-defense, but when they can't absolutely prove it, they throw everything but the kitchen sink in there. The woman definitely seems to be violent, but that doesn't mean she didn't defend herself in this case. Was the dude stabbed in the back or side? Was the hair hers, from being pulled out? If she has enough injuries, it would bring in some reasonable doubt, no matter how bad a person she is.

  • Backpacker Nov 19, 9:34 a.m.

    "paulej, you're awfully close to defending mangum with your posts."

    Sounds more like he's defending due process to me.

  • Alexia Nov 18, 6:57 p.m.

    scubagirl2, I'm not defending her. Rather, I think we should not bring useless drama into a court room. There should be no question what the red color is on those knives and should not be presented so as to create speculation.

    A broken knife is really hard to use as a weapon, as it's easy to cut your own hand with it. And it's very hard to try to use as a tool for stabbing somebody. Again, I ask: what's the point of mentioning these things if there is no clear explanation as to how they were used or intended to be used?

  • scubagirl2 Nov 18, 5:44 p.m.

    paulej, you're awfully close to defending mangum with your posts. First of all, a broken knife can stab just as a non broken one can unless all you have is wooden handle. Just how many knives, broken or otherwise, does one person need to keep in the living room and bathroom......I know that's NOT where I keep my knives.

  • Alexia Nov 18, 4:27 p.m.

    "The knives were probably broken in the fight she had with the boyfriend. When investigating a stabbing death, broken knives with red stains are of intrest..." --AUSERN

    Broken knives with blood on them are of interest. They can and should have tested whether those stains are human blood. They had time. On the day of the killing, it's fair to say there were red stains, but not in the courtroom.

    If the lady is guilty of murder, then it would help to be concrete in saying there was blood on those broken knives. Otherwise, it sounds like they are trying to create an atmosphere of suspicion with no real evidence.

  • scubagirl2 Nov 18, 2:59 p.m.

    so many knives laying around........I'm just hoping beyond hope that ALL of the jurors see thru her lies and convict her!!!

  • jjrn Nov 18, 2:53 p.m.

    She has proven that she has a problem telling the truth. That will probably come back now to haunt her. I wouldn't believe her and don't know of any who would.

  • EricaSliver Nov 18, 2:40 p.m.

    "And I can't see how in the world a broken knife comes into play. You can't very well use that as a weapon, so what does it mean?" paulej

    The knives were probably broken in the fight she had with the boyfriend. When investigating a stabbing death, broken knives with red stains are of intrest...

  • Ambygirl Nov 18, 2:27 p.m.

    Folks, being the manipulative lying con-artist that she is, she will probably get off. And I'll bet that she kills someone else in her life as well. She is a danger to anyone that comes in contact with her.

  • Alexia Nov 18, 1:59 p.m.

    What were those red stains? Why in the world would a witness even say this if it's not blood, except to bring in unnecessary drama? And I can't see how in the world a broken knife comes into play. You can't very well use that as a weapon, so what does it mean?

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