Durham District Attorney Mike Nifong has
asked the state attorney general's office to appoint a special
prosecutor to take over the Duke lacrosse case.
Nifong's attorney insists the veteran prosecutor is not running
from a weak case, and says Nifong is disappointed he won't be able
to take it to trial.
Attorney David Freedman says that Nifong is stepping down to --
quote -- "make sure the accuser receives a fair trial."
Nifong's request comes just two weeks after the North Carolina
State Bar filed ethics charges that could lead to Nifong's
disbarment. The Bar charged Nifong with violating four rules of
professional conduct for making misleading and inflammatory
comments about the athletes under suspicion.
In one instance he referred to the players as "hooligans."
James Cooney, an attorney for charged player Reade Seligmann,
says the defendants are -- quote -- "delighted that we're going to
have objective and competent prosecutors reviewing this case."