Coordinates: 36°00′30″N 78°54′43″W / 36.00831°N 78.91203°W / 36.00831; -78.91203
The 2006 Duke University lacrosse case was a scandal that started in March 2006 when Crystal Gail Mangum, a Black stripper, escort and student at North Carolina Central University, falsely accused three white American Duke University students - members of the Duke Blue Devils men's lacrosse team of raping her at a party held at the house of two of the team's captains in Durham, North Carolina, USA on March 13, 2006. Many involved in the case, including prosecutor Mike Nifong, called the alleged assault a hate crime or suggested it might be one.
On April 11, 2007, North Carolina Attorney General Roy Cooper dropped all charges and declared the three players innocent. Cooper stated that the charged players – Reade Seligmann, Collin Finnerty, and David Evans – were victims of a "tragic rush to accuse." The initial prosecutor for the case, Durham County District Attorney Mike Nifong, who had been denounced as a "rogue prosecutor" by Cooper, withdrew from the case in January 2007 after the North Carolina State Bar filed ethics charges against him. That June, Nifong was disbarred for "dishonesty, fraud, deceit and misrepresentation," making Nifong the first prosecutor in North Carolina history to lose his law license based on actions in a case. Nifong was found guilty of criminal contempt and served one day in jail.