Duke, the 2nd Dancer, 5WPR and Reputations In Crisis
“I’m worried about letting this opportunity pass me by without making the best of it and was wondering if you had any advice as to how to spin this to my advantage.” Comments from Kim Roberts, the 2nd Dancer in the Duke lacrosse case.
According to AP, the head of a New York public relations firm said his company will not be representing the second exotic dancer at a Duke men’s lacrosse team party on the night another dancer said she was gang-raped and beaten by three members of the team.
Ronn Torossian said 5W Public Relations, known mainly for its representation of a few Hip-Hop music artists, would not be representing Kim Roberts on any sides in the lacrosse scandal, which has received nationwide attention in the media. Ironically, the above statement came only after Torossian released a private e-mail from his potential client, Ms. Roberts, to the entire media world. It seems 5WPR was more interested in publicity for itself in being considered for the assignment than in confidentiality.
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Duke’s Reputation Takes Another Pounding as Two Duke Blue Devils Are Indicted
“This case is not going away.” Comments from Durham District Attorney Mike Nifong after defense attorneys and others ask the district attorney to drop the case against the Duke lacrosse players.
According to the Associated Press, Police took two Duke University lacrosse players into custody early Monday morning, a jail official said.
This comes less than a day after a grand jury charged two players in indictments that remain sealed, a defense attorney said, and more than a month after a stripper told police she was raped at a party thrown by Duke University’s lacrosse team.
“This is a tragedy,” attorney Robert Ekstrand said Monday after the indictments. “For the two young men, an ordeal lies ahead. … They are both innocent.”
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Duke Lacrosse Group Hires Clinton Attorney for Crisis PR and Reputation Management?
“It is unfortunate that members of the Duke community, players and families are being judged before all the facts are in,” Bennett said in a statement. “A lot of innocent young people and the families are being hurt, and unfortunately this situation is being abused by people with separate agendas. It is grossly unfair, and cool heads must prevail.” Comments from former Clinton attorney Robert Bennett, recently hired as a PR spokesman for the Committee for Fairness to Duke Families, a group paid for by supporters and family members of the Duke lacrosse team.
As reported by the Associated Press, a small group of boosters and others close to the Duke University lacrosse team have hired President Clinton’s former lawyer as part of an aggressive public relations effort to argue that the players did not rape a woman at an off-campus party.
Bob Bennett, a former federal prosecutor and Washington attorney who represented Clinton in the Paula Jones sexual harassment case, is serving as a spokesman for a group calling itself the Committee for Fairness to Duke Families.
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Duke University’s Reputation in Crisis
“They need presidents, they need administrators, they need faculty, to tell them that it was wrong behavior and that they are not going to be coddled because they are athletes, because they come from privileged backgrounds, because they have money.”
Comments from Duke graduate student Michelle Christian complaining that Duke University officials continue to downplay the alleged rape and beating of an African-American woman by three players on the Duke lacrosse team.
Duke University’s highly-ranked lacrosse team was recently suspended from play while many of the team’s members face an ongoing rape investigation.
The police inquiry stems from allegations made by an exotic dancer who says that she was raped, choked and beaten by three members of the lacrosse team during a private party held by team members. The woman said that the incident occurred on March 13 in a university-owned home that is occupied by three of the team’s four captains.
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