“Man involved in UNC reporter’s 2003 death convicted of DWI” article so misleading!

I read an article on the WRAL.COM web site this morning, written by Arielle Clay regarding Rabah Samara being convicted of DUI. The details in the article recount some of what occurred when Emily Caveness, (I guess dating Samara at the time.) driving Samara’s Cadillac SUV, hit and killed Stephen Gates while Gates was attempting to change a tire. I think I read that Stephen was partially “in the road” and that it was on a ramp. I also read that Samara, a passenger, and another couple in the back, were all asleep at the time that the accident occurred. Emily did not stop the vehicle immediately. I think I read that witnesses to the accident tried to tell those in the SUV what had occurred.

So, Caveness pulls the vehicle over, and Samara changes places with her and drives them all back to Raleigh. If anyone knew that a human being had been hit, it should have been Emily Caveness. If anyone should have been saying, “we need to report this, I just hit someone,” it should have been Emily Caveness.

Here is where I think the real “hinkiness” occurs in the story. Long-time D.A. Carl Fox, decided to prosecute Rabah Samara for “Hit & Run” and agreed to cut a deal with Emily Caveness (from being charged with “Hit & Run” down to “not reporting an accident”) in exchange for her testimony against Samara. Do bright red flashing lights go off in your head when you catch what is happening here? The D.A. knows that Emily Caveness was driving the vehicle, at the time of the accident. He’s going to prosecute Samara, who he (Fox) knows wasn’t driving, at the time of the accident. Is it any wonder that Samara’s trial was a short one?

What I wondered was if Emily Caveness had some political power over the D.A. Okay, not her directly, but a parent, or the friend of the family, who would try to make this go away for her involvement. It may not be the only thing which could make sense of the charges and deals, but it would be the easiest explanation.

Long-time D.A. should know the law pretty well.

Driver of vehicle, at the time of the accident, not charged with the more serious crime of “hit & run”.

Victim of “hit & run” partially to blame because he was in the road, trying to change his tire.

Deal for a lesser charge given to driver of the vehicle (not reporting an accident) in exchange for her testimony against a passenger in the car, at the time of the accident.

Passenger in the car, at the time of the accident, charged with more serious crime of “hit & run”. *Duh! How can I be guilty of “hit” because I wasn’t driving at the time?

Long-time D.A. made a judge a few years after this case.


Man involved in UNC reporter’s 2003 death convicted of DWI


Woman Avoids Jail Time For Death Of UNC Sports Reporter



Woman Who Admits Running Over UNC Reporter Testifies In Court


NOTE:  How could the D.A. cut a deal if he knew this testimony of the truck drivers that Gates & his car door were tumbling beneath the SUV?  How could Emily Caveness not know what she had done?

Jury Finds Man Not Guilty In Fatal Hit-And-Run Trial


“… Samara testified that he had been drinking heavily that night in October 2003 and fell asleep in the passenger seat of a Cadillac Escalade. He said he woke up after hearing a loud noise. Samara told jurors at that point, Emily Caveness, who was driving the vehicle, was hysterical. Samara said he told her to pull over…”

It could be argued that heavy drinking clouded Samara’s “moral judgment” in that he should have stopped, returned to the scene of the accident, or sought to report the accident.  But, he wasn’t driving!  The D.A. should have prosecuted Caveness for “hit & run”.


LETS SWITCH PLACES… (Not what actually happened.)

* I think I could make a case, that Emily Caveness and Rabah Samara were not treated equally or fairly under the Law.   Just switch the two, everything else being the same (except for sex).  Suppose that Samara had been driving, and Caveness was asleep, in a drunken stupor, in the passenger seat when the accident occurred.  Would the D.A. have cut a deal with Samara for his testimony against Caveness?  Yeah, right!  I don’t think so either.  It wouldn’t have made sense.  The D.A. was going to go after Caveness, who drove everyone away from the accident, even though Caveness was asleep at the time of the accident.  Something else was at play here.  Maybe it was Samara’s middle-eastern looks & name, or the Southern charm of a “young, white woman.”