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A number of national commentators made public statements upon the matter. While some pointed out quite early the disparity between the evidence Nifong claimed to have and the evidence that was actually had, others made strong statements about guilt based merely on Nifong's claims, and some repeated or initiated themselves false statements about the case.

Some notable examples:

Jesse Jackson

Jesse Jackson's April 24, 2006 column at http://www.blacknews.com/pr/duke301.html makes the following claims:

The players say that they used aliases to hire strippers for a team party at the house rented by the team captains. The accuser goes to school full-time at North Carolina Central, and for the past two months has worked at an escort service to help pay her way through school and support her two children. This was the first time she had been hired to dance for a party, but she expected it to be a bachelor party of five men. She and her partner found themselves in a party of more than 30 white male lacrosse players. The one African American on the team wasn’t there.

Devin Sherwood, the African-American player Jackson refers to, was in fact at the party, though he left shortly after the dancers arrived. The implication that Crystal Gail Mangum was new to stripping was also false; she had been stripping at least four years earlier (at the time of her arrest on charges of stealing a taxi at a strip club, driving it drunk, and using it to try and run down a police officer.) Mangum also told police in March that earlier in the evening, before performing for the lacrosse players (supposedly "the first time she had been hired to dance for a party") she had been performing for a couple in a hotel room, dancing and demonstrating the use of a vibrator.

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