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Syracuse assistant Bernie Fine Molestation Investigation


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#151 Marciano490


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Posted 30 November 2011 - 11:50 PM

http://www.thepostga...case-not-others

#152 Average Reds


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Posted 01 December 2011 - 09:03 AM

http://www.thepostga...case-not-others


I am in disbelief that this tape existed and was not turned over to the police or to Syracuse University by any of the two media organizations that had it, including the local paper that received confirmation from Laurie Fine that it was her on the tape.

WTF is wrong with people?

#153 Bucknahs Bum Ankle


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Posted 01 December 2011 - 09:56 AM

I guess I can kind of understand why the Post Standard and ESPN didn't turn the tape over given that the accuser told them he had already reported the molestation to the Syracuse PD and they declined to pursue it because the statute of limitation has expired. Laurie Fine confirmed to the Post Standard that she had the conversation with Davis, but denied that she made some of the statements (was she saying it was doctored? this part is not clear to me). So I guess both ESPN and the Post Standard had questions as to the veracity of the tape and weren't otherwise able to corroborate the story. If the accusation, including the taping, didn't meet journalistic standards to publish by two separate media outlets, should those outlets have turned the tape over to the police anyway even though they had been told by the accuser that the police had declined to investigate? In retrospect, knowing what we know now (which is still all sorts of cloudy), yes it looks like it would have been the right thing to do to turn it over. Even so, it doesn't seem likely it would have led to further investigation given the position taken by the police that time. The even bigger question to me is why didn't Davis provide the tape directly to the police in 2002 or to the University during their investigation in 2005? The fact that the Syracuse Police Chief in 2002, Dennis DuVal, is a former SU basketball player muddies things even further.

#154 Average Reds


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Posted 01 December 2011 - 10:26 AM

I guess I can kind of understand why the Post Standard and ESPN didn't turn the tape over given that the accuser told them he had already reported the molestation to the Syracuse PD and they declined to pursue it because the statute of limitation has expired. Laurie Fine confirmed to the Post Standard that she had the conversation with Davis, but denied that she made some of the statements (was she saying it was doctored? this part is not clear to me). So I guess both ESPN and the Post Standard had questions as to the veracity of the tape and weren't otherwise able to corroborate the story. If the accusation, including the taping, didn't meet journalistic standards to publish by two separate media outlets, should those outlets have turned the tape over to the police anyway even though they had been told by the accuser that the police had declined to investigate? In retrospect, knowing what we know now (which is still all sorts of cloudy), yes it looks like it would have been the right thing to do to turn it over. Even so, it doesn't seem likely it would have led to further investigation given the position taken by the police that time. The even bigger question to me is why didn't Davis provide the tape directly to the police in 2002 or to the University during their investigation in 2005? The fact that the Syracuse Police Chief in 2002, Dennis DuVal, is a former SU basketball player muddies things even further.


Couple of responses to this. I'll start with the Post Standard.

The Post Standard both had the tape and confirmation that the voice on the tape was Laurie Fine. Now, I guess it's possible that the tape was doctored, but after listening to it myself, I will admit that I find it hard to explain away some of the things Laurie Fine says under any circumstances. At a bare minimum, I would think that the Post Standard would have turned over the tapes to Syracuse if only because of the nature of the allegations and the fact that the one thing they knew for sure is that the wife of a Syracuse Assistant coach is pretty much corroborating the fact that he might be a sexual predator who holds himself above the law. Why they chose to do nothing with this for years is something I cannot explain.

As for ESPN, they are simply an immoral operation who have repeatedly demonstrated that there are one set of standards for them and one set of standards for other people and/or organizations. I mean, the group that had the tape is supposed to be their "investigative journalism" arm. And it strikes me that an investigative journalist who has this kind of information would want to, you know, investigate, to see if the bombshell they have on their hands has any validity to it. Instead, they appear to have attempted to speak with the small group of people Davis provided, and when those people either refused to speak with them or failed to corroborate his story for one reason or another, they shut their investigation down.

Call me cynical, but I'm willing to bet that their inaction might have something to do with the importance of college basketball to ESPN programming and to the fact that Jim Boeheim is tight with many ESPN commentators. I might also think that the importance of Syracuse basketball to the town had a role in the Post Standard doing nothing, but that is sheer speculation on my part.

Assuming that Davis did not provide a copy to Syracuse University or at least alert them to the existence of the tape, I cannot answer your question about why he did not do so. It is utterly and completely baffling.

The behavior all around is so inexplicable that I find myself at a complete loss with respect to what has actually happened here.

#155 Bucknahs Bum Ankle


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Posted 01 December 2011 - 10:38 AM

Those are good points and I don't really disagree. I'll just add that SU has said that they did not have the tape during their 2005 investigation. I'm pretty sure that means they weren't aware it existed, but I guess you never know. This is one hell of a sordid mess.

#156 ivanvamp


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Posted 01 December 2011 - 10:51 AM

Couple of responses to this. I'll start with the Post Standard.

The Post Standard both had the tape and confirmation that the voice on the tape was Laurie Fine. Now, I guess it's possible that the tape was doctored, but after listening to it myself, I will admit that I find it hard to explain away some of the things Laurie Fine says under any circumstances. At a bare minimum, I would think that the Post Standard would have turned over the tapes to Syracuse if only because of the nature of the allegations and the fact that the one thing they knew for sure is that the wife of a Syracuse Assistant coach is pretty much corroborating the fact that he might be a sexual predator who holds himself above the law. Why they chose to do nothing with this for years is something I cannot explain.

As for ESPN, they are simply an immoral operation who have repeatedly demonstrated that there are one set of standards for them and one set of standards for other people and/or organizations. I mean, the group that had the tape is supposed to be their "investigative journalism" arm. And it strikes me that an investigative journalist who has this kind of information would want to, you know, investigate, to see if the bombshell they have on their hands has any validity to it. Instead, they appear to have attempted to speak with the small group of people Davis provided, and when those people either refused to speak with them or failed to corroborate his story for one reason or another, they shut their investigation down.

Call me cynical, but I'm willing to bet that their inaction might have something to do with the importance of college basketball to ESPN programming and to the fact that Jim Boeheim is tight with many ESPN commentators. I might also think that the importance of Syracuse basketball to the town had a role in the Post Standard doing nothing, but that is sheer speculation on my part.

Assuming that Davis did not provide a copy to Syracuse University or at least alert them to the existence of the tape, I cannot answer your question about why he did not do so. It is utterly and completely baffling.

The behavior all around is so inexplicable that I find myself at a complete loss with respect to what has actually happened here.


It really is crazy beyond crazy. Fine molests Davis. Fine's wife knows, but doesn't seem bothered by it. Davis then has an affair with Fine's wife. Fine knows, but doesn't seem bothered by it.

Freaking bizarro world is what it is. The whole lot of them is totally screwed up.

#157 JBill

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Posted 01 December 2011 - 11:16 AM

I think both news orgs just thought Davis was lying. I know it looks bad with the tape, but they talked to the people he said would back him or allege similar abuse, no one did, Davis said the police weren't going to do anything, and I'm not sure they even thought to turn it over to the university, maybe they thought Davis would since it was his tape, or they thought the school had it already, since Davis had talked to them.

And if Davis told them he'd had an affair with Laurie...I more easily believe that the news orgs just didn't believe him over thinking they were trying to protect Boeheim or Syracuse.

If I get on ESPN for anything regarding this story, it's for not releasing the tape at the same time they broke the story, instead waiting more than a week. I know they said they had to verify it and wait for Fine's lawyer to get back to them, but I don't think you hold back on this, I think that was a bad call. That is keeping in reserve a significant part of the story.

#158 Marciano490


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Posted 01 December 2011 - 11:45 AM

I think both news orgs just thought Davis was lying. I know it looks bad with the tape, but they talked to the people he said would back him or allege similar abuse, no one did, Davis said the police weren't going to do anything, and I'm not sure they even thought to turn it over to the university, maybe they thought Davis would since it was his tape, or they thought the school had it already, since Davis had talked to them.

And if Davis told them he'd had an affair with Laurie...I more easily believe that the news orgs just didn't believe him over thinking they were trying to protect Boeheim or Syracuse.

If I get on ESPN for anything regarding this story, it's for not releasing the tape at the same time they broke the story, instead waiting more than a week. I know they said they had to verify it and wait for Fine's lawyer to get back to them, but I don't think you hold back on this, I think that was a bad call. That is keeping in reserve a significant part of the story.


Beyond the moral issue, it's just an indictment - as Average Reds pointed out - of a putative news organization to have access to that sort of information for about a decade and not be able to get to the bottom of the story.

#159 Average Reds


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Posted 01 December 2011 - 11:50 AM

I think both news orgs just thought Davis was lying. I know it looks bad with the tape, but they talked to the people he said would back him or allege similar abuse, no one did, Davis said the police weren't going to do anything, and I'm not sure they even thought to turn it over to the university, maybe they thought Davis would since it was his tape, or they thought the school had it already, since Davis had talked to them.

And if Davis told them he'd had an affair with Laurie...I more easily believe that the news orgs just didn't believe him over thinking they were trying to protect Boeheim or Syracuse.

If I get on ESPN for anything regarding this story, it's for not releasing the tape at the same time they broke the story, instead waiting more than a week. I know they said they had to verify it and wait for Fine's lawyer to get back to them, but I don't think you hold back on this, I think that was a bad call. That is keeping in reserve a significant part of the story.


You are letting them off the hook way too easily.

Forget the lack of corroboration from a few other witnesses - they had the tape. And there is no middle ground about that tape. If you believe it is genuine, the tape itself is corroboration. If you don't believe it is genuine, it is evidence that Bobby Davis is a liar of epic proportions.

By releasing that tape now, ESPN and the Post Standard are trying to have it both ways. And the reality is that the contents of that tape are so explosive, common decency says that they should have either worked hard to verify or debunk that tape back in early 2003. Holding on to it and only releasing it now is evidence of a moral failure as significant as what we're seeing in State College.

Based on what we know, that failure extends only to the two organizations that had the tape. If that remains the extent of it, then this is not like Penn State at all. If it goes beyond this, the story becomes more complicated.

#160 pedros hairstylist


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Posted 01 December 2011 - 11:54 AM

I'm really surprised that even if whoever had the tape and didn't feel it was credible enough to go with, that they didn't turn it over to law enforcement if for no other reason than covering their asses. What would be the harm in handing over a copy of a tape they suspected was bogus in the longshot event that it wasn't?

#161 JimD

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Posted 01 December 2011 - 12:28 PM

I'll play devil's advocate. If either news organization could not verify that the audio recording was real and decided to release it anyways, they risked destroying a man's reputation and probably his life. That is not a small consideration, no matter how horrifying the accusation is and how great the desire was to bring it to light if true.

#162 pedros hairstylist


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Posted 01 December 2011 - 12:37 PM

I don't think anyone's arguing that they should've run the story if they didn't feel it was verifiable. The issue is why they didn't drop it in the lap of law enforcement to decide if it merited an investigation.

#163 JimD

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Posted 01 December 2011 - 12:41 PM

Perhaps because they didn't think it was ethical to do so if there was a concern that the tape was doctored.

#164 Average Reds


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Posted 01 December 2011 - 12:43 PM

I'll play devil's advocate. If either news organization could not verify that the audio recording was real and decided to release it anyways, they risked destroying a man's reputation and probably his life. That is not a small consideration, no matter how horrifying the accusation is and how great the desire was to bring it to light if true.


No one is disagreeing with this.

However, you have to keep in mind that there is no middle ground. The tape is either genuine evidence that Fine is a monster or it is a fabrication, which is evidence that Davis is a monster who has tried to extort money from Fine and destroy him by fabricating evidence of non-existent crimes.

The point is that these two news organizations had evidence of serious criminal behavior on someone's part and instead of doing anything to sort it out, they buried the tape for almost 9 years. How do these people sleep?

#165 JBill

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Posted 01 December 2011 - 03:03 PM

The point is that these two news organizations had evidence of serious criminal behavior on someone's part and instead of doing anything to sort it out, they buried the tape for almost 9 years. How do these people sleep?

This is a good summary of the media organizations' role in all this, with links to both people defending and critiquing, from SI, and extensive quotes from the ESPN reporter.

Defending why they didn't go to the police with the tape:

"Here is how I look at it: First of all, it was only one man's account, and secondly, the tape itself was supplied to us," Schwarz said during a 25-minute phone interview on Wednesday. "It was not as if we were party to recording it, vetting it, knowing how it was made, who was on the other end of the phone call. We had never met Laurie Fine. We didn't know her voice. And it was not a perfect recording, either. It was a little scratchy and you could hear it, but you had to strain to hear exactly what was said. We had to sweeten the audio quality to make sure we understood the words better.
"So, given the fact that you only had one individual making this claim and we only had his word that he recorded it and he had already gone to the police prior to making the tape, it wasn't as if the police did not know about Bobby Davis and Bernie Fine. Had he not gone to the police, it might have been an entirely different ballgame. We might have looked at Bobby and said, 'Bobby, this seems like a police issue to us. Do you agree with that?' We would never order or compel someone to go to the police. We would never go to police ourselves and say, 'Hey, we have this tape. We just came upon it. Someone handed it to us. You might be interested to hear it, too.' I know we have been criticized for that, but given that he had contacted the police and that we didn't know that much about the tape or how it was made, we really didn't have the tools to take it to the police ourselves. In fact, we could have gotten Bobby Davis in trouble if the tape was recorded illegally."


Before last month, Schwarz and Berko last saw Davis in December 2003. But Schwarz kept in contact with Davis regularly via e-mail. He said he would make contact every year or two with Davis, but the contact was not extensive.
"I would just try to see how he was doing and what was going on in his life," Schwarz said. "He got married, he got divorced. He said he was done thinking about Bernie Fine, he had found God, he didn't really want to deal with it anymore because it was too painful."
Schwarz said he decided to reach out to Davis one last time a few months ago. Davis told him that he was married with two kids and that everything was great.
"I told him I was glad to hear it and I honestly felt that was pretty much the end," Schwarz said.


http://sportsillustr...nie.fine/1.html

Lots more discussion in the story. It seems like they did believe Davis and Schwartz has kept in regular contact with him over the years. Reading all that, I don't think there was any sinister motivation on the part of either ESPN or the Post Standard to cover the tape up.

Edited by JBill, 01 December 2011 - 03:07 PM.


#166 notfar

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Posted 01 December 2011 - 04:01 PM

What a crock of shit, ESPN is not a police department. They have someone saying they were molested and a purported tape of the perpetrators wife admitting they know about it too. The only way you don't give it over to the police is if you are 100% convinced this person is completely full of it and this is an elaborate practical joke.

Did ESPN buy the tape? Why did the guy that was molested go to ESPN and not the police in the first place? Did he sell the tape to them? If they bought it, what does that mean about what they thought about its legitimacy.

Edited by notfar, 01 December 2011 - 04:05 PM.


#167 ivanvamp


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Posted 01 December 2011 - 04:09 PM

What a crock of shit, ESPN is not a police department. They have someone saying they were molested and a purported tape of the perpetrators wife admitting they know about it too. The only way you don't give it over to the police is if you are 100% convinced this person is completely full of it and this is an elaborate practical joke.

Did ESPN buy the tape? Why did the guy that was molested go to ESPN and not the police in the first place? Did he sell the tape to them? If they bought it, what does that mean about what they thought about its legitimacy.


The biggest reason, as far as I understand it, is that the statute of limitations had run out. Turning it over to the police would have netted.........what, exactly? If the SOL angle is true, then there's nothing the police could do even if they possessed the tape at that point.

What should have happened - at a minimum - is that the tape should have been handed over to Syracuse University. I'm sure the chancellor and trustees would like to have known about the tape.

#168 There is no Rev


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Posted 01 December 2011 - 06:45 PM

He did not go there. To bracket this case further, he never said "sexual assault cases are basically about money." If he'd done that, then yes, absolutely, throw the book at him.

But that isn't the case. He said he believed this case in particular was about money. It's a fine distinction (pun mildly intended), but he doesn't speak in generalities in his quote.

I was referring to the quotation AverageReds posted here.

they are similar, but not the same--and the one I was thinking of is closer to talking about sexual assault cases in general as about money.

Are these two different incidences or did someone screw up a transcription somewhere? Did he spout off on this more than once and nobody told his to tone it down? that would be interesting.


I don't know, i feel like yourself and some others are reacting awfully strongly to Boeheim's actions. It is, of course, unwise to blame/mock an accuser from a communications and legal perspective--there's very little upside and it may blow up on you. What others are arguing is the difference between unwise and unreasonable. His actions don't seem all that unreasonable, given the set of information he had available to him at the time. Now maybe there is a big cover up, and if that comes to light then his actions were certainly ridiculous, but lacking that it seems hard to be all that upset by what he did given the information it seems he "knew" at the time.

At the end of the day, I'm not sure there's any way anyone can come off OK if someone they know decides to molest children in their free time. If you thought a person were capable of that, you certainly wouldn't be friends with them, and I don't know many people who believe they aren't a good judge of character. This concept of calling for the head of any and every head coach whose assistants venture into deviance seems fundamentally unfair. There's no way for these guys to know what their trusted friends and advisors are doing when they're not with them. Firing every guy just isn't going to solve much.

Pretty much every predator has a bunch of people to step up and say that they know that there is no way this good man could have done those things.

The damage the behavior motivated by this "knowledge" causes is incalculable.


I guess I can kind of understand why the Post Standard and ESPN didn't turn the tape over given that the accuser told them he had already reported the molestation to the Syracuse PD and they declined to pursue it because the statute of limitation has expired. Laurie Fine confirmed to the Post Standard that she had the conversation with Davis, but denied that she made some of the statements (was she saying it was doctored? this part is not clear to me). So I guess both ESPN and the Post Standard had questions as to the veracity of the tape and weren't otherwise able to corroborate the story. If the accusation, including the taping, didn't meet journalistic standards to publish by two separate media outlets, should those outlets have turned the tape over to the police anyway even though they had been told by the accuser that the police had declined to investigate? In retrospect, knowing what we know now (which is still all sorts of cloudy), yes it looks like it would have been the right thing to do to turn it over. Even so, it doesn't seem likely it would have led to further investigation given the position taken by the police that time. The even bigger question to me is why didn't Davis provide the tape directly to the police in 2002 or to the University during their investigation in 2005? The fact that the Syracuse Police Chief in 2002, Dennis DuVal, is a former SU basketball player muddies things even further.

We're talking about what is potential evidence of a sex crime, yes?


I'll play devil's advocate. If either news organization could not verify that the audio recording was real and decided to release it anyways, they risked destroying a man's reputation and probably his life. That is not a small consideration, no matter how horrifying the accusation is and how great the desire was to bring it to light if true.

Perhaps because they didn't think it was ethical to do so if there was a concern that the tape was doctored.

Shouldn't this be a job for the appropriate authorities?


The biggest reason, as far as I understand it, is that the statute of limitations had run out. Turning it over to the police would have netted.........what, exactly? If the SOL angle is true, then there's nothing the police could do even if they possessed the tape at that point.

Are you aware of the recidivism rate for sex offenders?

Think about it.

Which is to say, beyond this case but speaking generally, there are very, very good reasons to inform the police about such evidence even if the statute of limitations has run out.




As is often the case with such things, I think there is a lot of overthinking of things going on in this thread.

#169 ivanvamp


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Posted 01 December 2011 - 07:24 PM

Are you aware of the recidivism rate for sex offenders?

Think about it.

Which is to say, beyond this case but speaking generally, there are very, very good reasons to inform the police about such evidence even if the statute of limitations has run out.

As is often the case with such things, I think there is a lot of overthinking of things going on in this thread.


Yeah, this is a great point. I'm not sure what the cops could have done at that point though - you cannot charge a guy after the SOL has run out, and you cannot charge a guy for a crime he hasn't committed yet. Nor can a guy be put on the sex offender list (Megan's Law) because he hasn't been charged with anything. And you can't spend the next 10 years trailing the guy everywhere he goes. So what could the cops have done with that recording?

#170 There is no Rev


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Posted 01 December 2011 - 07:38 PM

Yeah, this is a great point. I'm not sure what the cops could have done at that point though - you cannot charge a guy after the SOL has run out, and you cannot charge a guy for a crime he hasn't committed yet. Nor can a guy be put on the sex offender list (Megan's Law) because he hasn't been charged with anything. And you can't spend the next 10 years trailing the guy everywhere he goes. So what could the cops have done with that recording?

Let's say, for example, he was still doing it...

Then the cops could, like investigate, find the additional crimes, and stop that from happening--which would be even just as or even more important than punishing him for past crimes.

What people should do with potential evidence ought not be based on what Fine did or did not do.

We don't have an enormous problem of false indictments for sex crimes in America. We do have an enormous problem of predators not being stopped, even as some people have the information that would allow action to be taken.

I'd actually encourage anyone even remotely interested in this stuff to seek out a professional who deals with such things. It could blow your mind.

#171 Marciano490


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Posted 01 December 2011 - 07:54 PM

Meanwhile, ESPN is congratulating itself for getting Fine fired.

http://espn.go.com/e...nie-fine-firing

#172 Average Reds


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Posted 01 December 2011 - 09:48 PM

I was referring to the quotation AverageReds posted here.

they are similar, but not the same--and the one I was thinking of is closer to talking about sexual assault cases in general as about money.

Are these two different incidences or did someone screw up a transcription somewhere? Did he spout off on this more than once and nobody told his to tone it down? that would be interesting.


My understanding is that the bolded part is correct.

Interesting indeed.

#173 ivanvamp


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Posted 02 December 2011 - 05:53 AM

Let's say, for example, he was still doing it...

Then the cops could, like investigate, find the additional crimes, and stop that from happening--which would be even just as or even more important than punishing him for past crimes.

What people should do with potential evidence ought not be based on what Fine did or did not do.

We don't have an enormous problem of false indictments for sex crimes in America. We do have an enormous problem of predators not being stopped, even as some people have the information that would allow action to be taken.

I'd actually encourage anyone even remotely interested in this stuff to seek out a professional who deals with such things. It could blow your mind.


We had a situation a few years ago in our local grammar school that went like this. I had served as a chaperone on a field trip to Sturbridge Village (an historical village in MA). I was allowed to take my group of 2 kids anywhere I wanted to. We had fun.

I found out later that there was a parent who was on Megan's List. He was not a chaperone for this particular trip, but I asked the principal what the policy was for that. I mean, after chaperoning it was obvious to me that an adult could take a kid into a very secluded spot, so naturally I was worried that this guy would be allowed access to the kids for something like that, and I wanted to know if the school had a policy on whether this guy (or anyone in that situation) would be allowed to be a chaperone. The principal's response? He has served his time and has just as much a right as any other parent to be a chaperone. I went ballistic. I said, if you unknowingly allowed a sex offender to chaperone a trip like this and something happens, you are in deep trouble. If you *KNOWINGLY* allow a sex offender to do that, your life is over. And it should be.

But here's the thing, related to the point you made above: what, exactly, can the cops investigate? They cannot investigate previous incidents (such as that which the tape is about). That's done. And if there is no information about any other incidents....WHAT CAN THEY INVESTIGATE? I'm not trying to be a pain here....I'm just thinking....if Fine hasn't been charged with anything, he's not a criminal (legally). Would the cops be allowed a search warrant just in case he's doing it again? I fully understand the nature of sex offenders and how they have a very high rate of repeat offenses...hence my concern over this guy on a field trip. But I don't know that a judge is going to grant a search warrant for.........what, exactly? Evidence that something might be happening now, even though the last known (and not even "known" in a legal sense because he still wouldn't have been charged with anything...I'm sure Fine's lawyer would have a field day with that) incident was years and years prior?

I just think the cops' hands would be tied at that point, unfortunately. On another note, I don't know why the SOL on something like this is a mere 5 years in NY. That seems way too short a time period. I'm not sure the reason for that.

#174 Average Reds


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Posted 02 December 2011 - 06:49 AM

But here's the thing, related to the point you made above: what, exactly, can the cops investigate? They cannot investigate previous incidents (such as that which the tape is about). That's done. And if there is no information about any other incidents....WHAT CAN THEY INVESTIGATE? I'm not trying to be a pain here....I'm just thinking....if Fine hasn't been charged with anything, he's not a criminal (legally). Would the cops be allowed a search warrant just in case he's doing it again? I fully understand the nature of sex offenders and how they have a very high rate of repeat offenses...hence my concern over this guy on a field trip. But I don't know that a judge is going to grant a search warrant for.........what, exactly? Evidence that something might be happening now, even though the last known (and not even "known" in a legal sense because he still wouldn't have been charged with anything...I'm sure Fine's lawyer would have a field day with that) incident was years and years prior?

I just think the cops' hands would be tied at that point, unfortunately. On another note, I don't know why the SOL on something like this is a mere 5 years in NY. That seems way too short a time period. I'm not sure the reason for that.


Stop for a second and think about what has been going on in Syracuse this past week.

Bernie Fine has yet to be charged with anything. To the extent that any crimes may have been committed against Bobby Davis, the SOL has almost surely expired. And yet, I believe there have been three searches of his home and office by state, federal and local law enforcement over the past two weeks. What you see happening now - Fine fired, his home and office torn apart being searched for evidence so they can charge him with a crime - is exactly what would have happened if that tape had been given to law enforcement back in early 2003. Because the tape provides all the probable cause needed to believe that there may be ongoing criminal activity. (And if I've gotten some terms wrong, I'm not a lawyer, so I plead sloppiness.)

#175 ivanvamp


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Posted 02 December 2011 - 07:40 AM

Stop for a second and think about what has been going on in Syracuse this past week.

Bernie Fine has yet to be charged with anything. To the extent that any crimes may have been committed against Bobby Davis, the SOL has almost surely expired. And yet, I believe there have been three searches of his home and office by state, federal and local law enforcement over the past two weeks. What you see happening now - Fine fired, his home and office torn apart being searched for evidence so they can charge him with a crime - is exactly what would have happened if that tape had been given to law enforcement back in early 2003. Because the tape provides all the probable cause needed to believe that there may be ongoing criminal activity. (And if I've gotten some terms wrong, I'm not a lawyer, so I plead sloppiness.)


Yeah ok, fair enough.

#176 LeftyTG

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Posted 02 December 2011 - 08:26 AM

Stop for a second and think about what has been going on in Syracuse this past week.

Bernie Fine has yet to be charged with anything. To the extent that any crimes may have been committed against Bobby Davis, the SOL has almost surely expired. And yet, I believe there have been three searches of his home and office by state, federal and local law enforcement over the past two weeks. What you see happening now - Fine fired, his home and office torn apart being searched for evidence so they can charge him with a crime - is exactly what would have happened if that tape had been given to law enforcement back in early 2003. Because the tape provides all the probable cause needed to believe that there may be ongoing criminal activity. (And if I've gotten some terms wrong, I'm not a lawyer, so I plead sloppiness.)

I'm sorry, but this is patently untrue. The only reason there have been search warrants is because a third accuser, Zach Tomaselli, stepped forward. He signed an affidavit saying he was molested by Fine in a hotel after a game at Pittsburgh in 2002. The statute of limitations has not expired on Tomaselli, which is the reason the searches can go forward.

I know you said you aren't a lawyer, so I'm not trying to be harsh. But in no way is that tape probable cause that there is ongoing criminal activity, and in no way is that tape the grounds for these warrants.

Edited by LeftyTG, 02 December 2011 - 08:27 AM.


#177 Average Reds


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Posted 02 December 2011 - 10:07 AM

I'm sorry, but this is patently untrue. The only reason there have been search warrants is because a third accuser, Zach Tomaselli, stepped forward. He signed an affidavit saying he was molested by Fine in a hotel after a game at Pittsburgh in 2002. The statute of limitations has not expired on Tomaselli, which is the reason the searches can go forward.

I know you said you aren't a lawyer, so I'm not trying to be harsh. But in no way is that tape probable cause that there is ongoing criminal activity, and in no way is that tape the grounds for these warrants.


You don't think that his wife on the tape saying that there are others is probable cause to suspect that the activity is ongoing?

The other point I'll make is that my understanding is that taking Tomaselli to Pittsburgh is what makes this a federal case. But I believe the SOL for New York would have expired for activities relating to 2002. So why did state and local authorities join in the search?

Edited by Average Reds, 02 December 2011 - 10:10 AM.


#178 notfar

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Posted 02 December 2011 - 10:17 AM

I'm sorry, but this is patently untrue. The only reason there have been search warrants is because a third accuser, Zach Tomaselli, stepped forward. He signed an affidavit saying he was molested by Fine in a hotel after a game at Pittsburgh in 2002. The statute of limitations has not expired on Tomaselli, which is the reason the searches can go forward.

I know you said you aren't a lawyer, so I'm not trying to be harsh. But in no way is that tape probable cause that there is ongoing criminal activity, and in no way is that tape the grounds for these warrants.


Okay so the police drop a dime to the wife and play the tape to her. Hey we have you on tape that you know your husband is molesting little kids. Do you think he is possibly still molesting little kids? She says yes. Maybe she even says she is sure of it. Maybe she says no and everyone can say they did their due dilligence. Who knows??? Nobody because that never happened. For some reason ESPN just sat on the tape. Sickening.

#179 LeftyTG

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Posted 02 December 2011 - 01:25 PM

Okay so the police drop a dime to the wife and play the tape to her. Hey we have you on tape that you know your husband is molesting little kids. Do you think he is possibly still molesting little kids? She says yes. Maybe she even says she is sure of it. Maybe she says no and everyone can say they did their due dilligence. Who knows??? Nobody because that never happened. For some reason ESPN just sat on the tape. Sickening.

Oh I agree with this. I think ESPN and the Post Standard should not have sat on the tape, and if the police had the tape I would have expected them to question Laurie Fine in much the same way you described. I was responding to Average Red's faulty legal analysis on the connection between the tape and the recent executed search warrants. The search warrants happened because the third accuser stepped forward, who spoke to the police, signed an affidavit describing his accusations that was presented to a judge, and a warrant was secured. There is no connection between the tape and the warrants.

#180 Average Reds


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Posted 02 December 2011 - 02:23 PM

There is no connection between the tape and the warrants.


Except for the fact that the publicity from the case being reported is what made the third accuser surface, no? And the Chancellor at Syracuse has already stated that the tape was the reason for Fine's immediate dismissal.

I get what you are saying about the direct causality for the search warrants. At the same time, if those tapes were played in 2003, there's no way we don't end up in exactly the same place we are now - Fine fired, investigation ongoing.

#181 There is no Rev


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Posted 03 December 2011 - 01:22 AM

But here's the thing, related to the point you made above: what, exactly, can the cops investigate? They cannot investigate previous incidents (such as that which the tape is about). That's done. And if there is no information about any other incidents....WHAT CAN THEY INVESTIGATE? I'm not trying to be a pain here....I'm just thinking....if Fine hasn't been charged with anything, he's not a criminal (legally). Would the cops be allowed a search warrant just in case he's doing it again? I fully understand the nature of sex offenders and how they have a very high rate of repeat offenses...hence my concern over this guy on a field trip. But I don't know that a judge is going to grant a search warrant for.........what, exactly? Evidence that something might be happening now, even though the last known (and not even "known" in a legal sense because he still wouldn't have been charged with anything...I'm sure Fine's lawyer would have a field day with that) incident was years and years prior?

I just think the cops' hands would be tied at that point, unfortunately. On another note, I don't know why the SOL on something like this is a mere 5 years in NY. That seems way too short a time period. I'm not sure the reason for that.

THE. NEXT. CRIME.

There may not be one. There may not have been a first one. BUT! What if there is a next crime that gets botched because police were not on top of it because people did a bad job on previous instances?

How many cases do you have to see where people go, hey, well, nobody ever accused him before... to GET it?

You want evidence on record so that if another case comes up, the police have reasons to take it seriously. Even if some stuff is past the statute of limitations, they can create a pattern of evidence, or have other people to interview or evidence to look at to understand the new current case.

Imagine if someone brings a case against Fine next year, for example.

The point is precisely that the decisions ought not be made on what we know. Proper procedure is based on the understanding that we may not know.

I'm not talking about a judge getting a warrant for Fine, as you mention. Yes, that is not happening. What I am talking about is the reality of police work. They get lots of calls, lots of leads, and they have to decide which ones to pursue. the difference between having some stuff in the books on some history on a guy as to whether or not or how fully to investigate allegations of sexual assault is huge.

If everyone followed your reasoning, thinking that they were an isolated incident, it would be possible for a guy to get away with many assaults... each person not reporting because...

The fact they can't arrest a guy tomorrow is not a reason not to make the police aware of a potential sexual predator, is it?

#182 JBill

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Posted 03 December 2011 - 02:03 AM

This is only going to get weirder. A guy I work with was a player on Cuse and he claims it was pretty well known that Mrs Fine used to sleep with the players. He does not think that Boeheim had any idea about Mrs Fine or Bernie, for that matter.


Deadspin has these rumors now, and says there might even be a tape:

Another source says that at least one media outlet has evidence that Laurie, now 53, had sex with players on many of Jim Boeheim's squads. This was happening as early as the 80's, a third source says. "It was a rite of passage for some to be with Bernie's wife," one of the sources says. As for the sex tape, it apparently features Laurie and another player, and it's been shopped around for years.


http://m.deadspin.co...ith-laurie-fine

#183 natpastime162

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Posted 03 December 2011 - 03:46 AM

THE. NEXT. CRIME.

There may not be one. There may not have been a first one. BUT! What if there is a next crime that gets botched because police were not on top of it because people did a bad job on previous instances?

How many cases do you have to see where people go, hey, well, nobody ever accused him before... to GET it?

You want evidence on record so that if another case comes up, the police have reasons to take it seriously. Even if some stuff is past the statute of limitations, they can create a pattern of evidence, or have other people to interview or evidence to look at to understand the new current case.

Imagine if someone brings a case against Fine next year, for example.

The point is precisely that the decisions ought not be made on what we know. Proper procedure is based on the understanding that we may not know.

I'm not talking about a judge getting a warrant for Fine, as you mention. Yes, that is not happening. What I am talking about is the reality of police work. They get lots of calls, lots of leads, and they have to decide which ones to pursue. the difference between having some stuff in the books on some history on a guy as to whether or not or how fully to investigate allegations of sexual assault is huge.

If everyone followed your reasoning, thinking that they were an isolated incident, it would be possible for a guy to get away with many assaults... each person not reporting because...

The fact they can't arrest a guy tomorrow is not a reason not to make the police aware of a potential sexual predator, is it?


Rev,

Your reasoning resembles a discussion I had with a co-worker yesterday. I mentioned how a Boston Herald (I think) article assessed Tom Corbett very positively for his actions during the PSU disaster. He was surprised and felt local (Harrisburg, PA) press are questioning the timeline of events. Basically, Sandusky is accused of molesting (at least) 2 boys AFTER the AG's office started their investigation 3 1/2 years ago.

#184 ivanvamp


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Posted 03 December 2011 - 07:10 AM

THE. NEXT. CRIME.

There may not be one. There may not have been a first one. BUT! What if there is a next crime that gets botched because police were not on top of it because people did a bad job on previous instances?

How many cases do you have to see where people go, hey, well, nobody ever accused him before... to GET it?

You want evidence on record so that if another case comes up, the police have reasons to take it seriously. Even if some stuff is past the statute of limitations, they can create a pattern of evidence, or have other people to interview or evidence to look at to understand the new current case.

Imagine if someone brings a case against Fine next year, for example.

The point is precisely that the decisions ought not be made on what we know. Proper procedure is based on the understanding that we may not know.

I'm not talking about a judge getting a warrant for Fine, as you mention. Yes, that is not happening. What I am talking about is the reality of police work. They get lots of calls, lots of leads, and they have to decide which ones to pursue. the difference between having some stuff in the books on some history on a guy as to whether or not or how fully to investigate allegations of sexual assault is huge.

If everyone followed your reasoning, thinking that they were an isolated incident, it would be possible for a guy to get away with many assaults... each person not reporting because...

The fact they can't arrest a guy tomorrow is not a reason not to make the police aware of a potential sexual predator, is it?


Reds is arguing the same thing and in post #175 in this thread I said he had a good point. You probably did not see that, which is fine, but given that I already conceded the point, your post here, so far as the argument goes, is superfluous. But yes, I'll reiterate - you guys make a really good point here. I'm not a lawyer and I don't know what is legal and what is not from an investigative standpoint...but yeah obviously you want to prevent this from happening again.

#185 Average Reds


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Posted 03 December 2011 - 08:03 AM

It took about a week, but it's finally sinking in for Jim Boeheim that he made a not insignificant error in judgment when he initially lashed out at Bobby Davis:

"I believe I misspoke very badly in my response to the allegations that have been made," said Boeheim, who was emotional in delivering his remarks. "I shouldn't have questioned what the accusers expressed or their motives. I am really sorry that I did that, and I regret any harm that I caused."


I watched the replay of the press conference after Syracuse's game last night, and quite honestly, this quote doesn't really capture what he said and how he said it. The tone, tenor and obvious contrition were in start contrast to the almost smug tone after the team's game on Tuesday, when he infuriated many by talking about how he was "proud" of the loyalty he showed to Fine.

It was also mentioned that he spent a large part of the day on Thursday at the McMahon/Ryan Child Advocacy Center in Syracuse, and I can't help but thinking that he got more than a little dose of the reality of what victims of abuse go through. He spoke at length about the center, the good work they do and his commitment to help them in the future "whether I'm coaching or not coaching ... does not matter."

It was late in coming, but Boeheim deserves credit here.

Edited by Average Reds, 03 December 2011 - 08:04 AM.


#186 bsj


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Posted 03 December 2011 - 10:39 AM

It took about a week, but it's finally sinking in for Jim Boeheim that he made a not insignificant error in judgment when he initially lashed out at Bobby Davis:



I watched the replay of the press conference after Syracuse's game last night, and quite honestly, this quote doesn't really capture what he said and how he said it. The tone, tenor and obvious contrition were in start contrast to the almost smug tone after the team's game on Tuesday, when he infuriated many by talking about how he was "proud" of the loyalty he showed to Fine.

It was also mentioned that he spent a large part of the day on Thursday at the McMahon/Ryan Child Advocacy Center in Syracuse, and I can't help but thinking that he got more than a little dose of the reality of what victims of abuse go through. He spoke at length about the center, the good work they do and his commitment to help them in the future "whether I'm coaching or not coaching ... does not matter."

It was late in coming, but Boeheim deserves credit here.


Its also important to note that he and Juli have been involved with that center for years, and that she is a member of their board I believe. They even posted a message on their website BEFORE he spoke yesterday essentially supporting him and the Boeheim's in light of the work they have done with the center.

Finally, as you may know, Juli and Jim Boeheim have been strong supporters of the McMahon/Ryan Child Advocacy Center for some time. In fact, Juli Boeheim is an Honorary Chair of our recently launched Capital Campaign. In Jimís initial reaction to the Bernie Fine investigation, we see the same shock from him, that we see everyday among family members and friends at our Child Advocacy Center when allegations of child abuse are first made. We believe this community crisis can help us turn this into a teachable moment for all. Based on what we know today, we hope and expect that our relationship with the Boeheims will continue, because Juli and Jim have been true believers in our mission.


I think a statement like this is important.

#187 DukeSox


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Posted 03 December 2011 - 02:08 PM

really? I felt like his constant pimping of all the money he had given (and will give in the future!) to the Center was meant to make up for his lack of action in Fine situation. As in, "hey, I fucked up, but look at all the money! that makes up for it!"

hard to tell. his tone went back and forth every other sentence.

#188 bsj


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Posted 03 December 2011 - 03:46 PM

really? I felt like his constant pimping of all the money he had given (and will give in the future!) to the Center was meant to make up for his lack of action in Fine situation. As in, "hey, I fucked up, but look at all the money! that makes up for it!"

hard to tell. his tone went back and forth every other sentence.


It's remarkable how perspective can change meaning.

I felt like he was trying to make people understand its not like yesterday was the first time be made any overtures to this center, but rather,that his commitment had been long-standing.

#189 bosox4283

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Posted 31 December 2011 - 12:25 PM

Almost a month since the last post. The DA said that they cannot go after Fine because of the statute of limitations. Has there been any other news apart from this announcement? After a tumultuous few months, it got real quiet real fast.

#190 ivanvamp


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Posted 15 January 2012 - 02:20 PM

The latest on the Fine story:

http://espn.go.com/mens-college-basketball/story/_/id/7464331/syracuse-orange-inmate-accuser-bernie-fine-says-was-lying


"A prison inmate who was one of four men to accuse a former Syracuse University assistant basketball coach of sexual abuse when they were children has admitted that he made up his claim.

The accuser, Floyd VanHooser, wrote in a letter that he lied to police and in December interviews with The Associated Press and The Post-Standard newspaper of Syracuse. He said he wanted to get back at the coach, Bernie Fine, because Fine did not hire a lawyer to help VanHooser fight a criminal conviction.

Fine had helped raise the 56-year-old VanHooser after his parents died.

Two other men, former Syracuse ball boys in the 1980s, accused Fine late last year of abusing them as children, but the statute of limitations has expired. Fine was fired Nov. 27 after they came forward, ending his 35-plus years as an assistant at Syracuse.

Fine, 66, has denied wrongdoing and has not been charged. Fine's attorney, Karl Sleight, declined to comment on Sunday. A federal investigation is ongoing.

Another man has also accused Fine, though a prosecutor has said that there is evidence that undercuts that claim."


Obviously, this is all good news for Fine.


#191 Judge Mental13


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Posted 16 January 2012 - 07:38 AM

Hard to really call anything "good" for FIne after that convo w/his wife came out.

#192 ivanvamp


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Posted 16 January 2012 - 08:12 AM

Hard to really call anything "good" for FIne after that convo w/his wife came out.


I understand that, but if you're in deep trouble, having one of your accusers come out and say that he was lying all along....well, how can that not be good news for you?

#193 Judge Mental13


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Posted 16 January 2012 - 09:03 AM

It is, in the sense that he would probably do less jail time for just molesting two kids and not three, (if the SoL hadn't run out, obviously) but in the big picture the positive impact of this recant seems minimal.

#194 lostjumper

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Posted 16 January 2012 - 12:07 PM

First of all, if Fine did molest these kids, not enough bad stuff can happen to him. However, I think this does cloudy the picture that we thought we had. 1 accuser admits to making up the accusations, and the prosecutor believes another accuser is making up stuff as well. The 3rd accuser had a sexual relationship with Fine's wife, is a drug addict, a messed up so much that Fine cut him off financially. He also has made statements, such as the one about Boeheim seeing him in hotel rooms with Fine that seem to be untrue. At the least most of Davis's story is uncorroborated.

What you have is a really, really weird phone call between Davis and Laurie Fine, and not much else. I know the SOL has run out, but even if it hadn't, I doubt you could ever get a conviction in this case. Again, if Fine did this to young boys he's a monster and deserves to burn in hell. However, a case could be made that all these accusations are motivated by revenge or money.

#195 Rossox

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Posted 20 January 2012 - 04:09 PM

3rd Bernie Fine accuser doctored emails

http://espn.go.com/m...vestigation-end

#196 ivanvamp


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Posted 20 January 2012 - 06:07 PM

3rd Bernie Fine accuser doctored emails

http://espn.go.com/m...vestigation-end


So what are we left with, then? One guy recants the entire thing. Another says he lied to hurt Fine, but still says, "But he did do it!" Um, credibility = gone.

We are left with one guy still, and then there's Davis. We have his claims, which are unsupported, but we do have the phone call. And here's a key quote from the phone call:

Laurie Fine: I know everything that went on, you know. I know everything that went on with him. Bernie has issues, maybe that he's not aware of. But he has issues. And you trusted somebody you shouldn't you have trusted.


Bobby Davis: Yeah.

Fine: Bernie is also in denial. I think that he did the things he did, but he's somehow, through his own mental telepathy, has erased them out of his mind.

- - - - -

I haven't heard the whole phone call or read the whole text of it, but from this, you can't prove anything. Maybe what Fine's "issue" is is homosexuality. Nothing in that text above proves that Fine's issue was molesting kids. I mean, he very well may have done it, but this sure doesn't prove anything.

#197 Average Reds


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Posted 20 January 2012 - 06:12 PM

I haven't heard the whole phone call or read the whole text of it, but from this, you can't prove anything. Maybe what Fine's "issue" is is homosexuality. Nothing in that text above proves that Fine's issue was molesting kids. I mean, he very well may have done it, but this sure doesn't prove anything.


Perhaps before you make a judgement about a specific piece of evidence, you should listen to the entire tape or at least read transcripts of the conversation, because taking a single sentence out and saying "Hey, it doesn't prove anything!" is silly.

I've read the transcipts. If the tape is genuine - and Fine's wife has authenticated her voice on the tape - Fine is a monster.

Edited by Average Reds, 20 January 2012 - 06:13 PM.


#198 ivanvamp


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Posted 20 January 2012 - 06:30 PM

Perhaps before you make a judgement about a specific piece of evidence, you should listen to the entire tape or at least read transcripts of the conversation, because taking a single sentence out and saying "Hey, it doesn't prove anything!" is silly.

I've read the transcipts. If the tape is genuine - and Fine's wife has authenticated her voice on the tape - Fine is a monster.


Well I have already given the caveat. And I've seen people post that bit of the conversation as if that is the incriminating part.

Fine very well may be a monster. But it's becoming clearer that the accusations against him are losing credibility.

EDIT: I just found the transcript of the conversation online. Yikes, horrible. Assuming what they were talking about actually happened.

Edited by ivanvamp, 20 January 2012 - 06:35 PM.


#199 Average Reds


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Posted 20 January 2012 - 06:39 PM

Well I have already given the caveat. And I've seen people post that bit of the conversation as if that is the incriminating part.

Fine very well may be a monster. But it's becoming clearer that the accusations against him are losing credibility.


Your observations would be more credible if you hadn't already posted about how this was all "good news for Bernie." And honestly, I'm reacting to your fanboyish tone more than anything.

I understand that as more of the allegations against Fine begin to crumble and (importantly) no new allegations are being reported, there are significant questions about this case. But before I'm going to believe that Bernie Fine is innocent, someone is going to have to explain the tapes. Because I have listened them - at least the parts of the tape that have been made public - and unless this is a fabrication that would make Frank Abagnale proud, the tapes leave no doubt as to Bernie Fine's guilt.

#200 StuckOnYouk

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Posted 20 January 2012 - 06:45 PM

How hilarious would it be if Boeheim went way over the top in defending him and then in the long run went along with his firing even though he turned out to be innocent.
I'm not saying he's innocent, but that would make me laugh if he was after all.