Local News

Ex-boyfriend says Mangum threatened him with knife

Posted November 15, 2013 12:26 p.m. EST
Updated November 18, 2013 2:55 p.m. EST

— A Durham man testified Friday that Crystal Mangum threatened at him with a knife during a 2010 domestic dispute and later had to be restrained by police.

Milton Walker reluctantly testified about the Feb. 17, 2010, assault after Superior Court Judge Paul Ridgeway allowed prosecutors to introduce evidence of the incident at Mangum's murder trial.

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.

Walker, who said he has dated Mangum off and on since they were in high school, said they were arguing, and he grabbed her by the neck and held her down until she calmed down. She then hit him with first a chair and then a step-stool, he said, and he ran from the apartment.

After police were called to the apartment, Walker said he returned, only to have Mangum threaten him and advance toward him, screaming, "I'm going to kill you!"

Two police officers had to restrain Mangum, and remove her from the apartment, Walker said.

Mangum was later convicted of three counts of child abuse – her children were in the apartment at the time – injury to personal property and resisting a public officer. A jury deadlocked on an arson charge related to clothes being set on fire during the argument, and prosecutors later dropped the case.

Ridgeway prevented any testimony of the arson charge or the children being present but said other facts of the incident were "substantially similar in certain respects" to Daye's stabbing. He told jurors they could consider it to demonstrate Mangum had a motive, opportunity and plan in the stabbing.

Earlier in the day, testimony was delayed for about an hour as Ridgeway questioned all 12 jurors and two alternates individually about their ability to weigh all of the evidence in the trial impartially, and he advised them not to discuss the case at all until they were ready to begin deliberations.

"I want to make sure that you understand that rule in the broadest sense," he said. "There's not to be discussion about what you're hearing in this courtroom, what you might have read in the media, what you might have heard prior to this case or any thoughts, opinions, anything you might have about this case in any way, shape or form. You can talk about football. You can talk about your family. You can play cards. You can do any of those things, but you cannot talk about this case."

The questioning came after an alternate juror said a member of the jury told others on the panel Thursday how to proceed with the case.

"What I got out of it was that we should be concerned about Durham's image. We're representing Durham," the juror said. "I felt a little uncomfortable about it."

All of the jurors said they understood the judge's admonition.

Other testimony Friday included the presentation of evidence collected by crime scene investigators, such as photos of Daye's injuries taken while he was in the hospital, and blood and DNA analyses conducted by the State Crime Lab.

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.