Duke Lacrosse Accuser Guilty of Misdemeanor Child Abuse

Just when you thought Crystal Mangum's life couldn't get any messier.

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Crystlan Mangum (Durham County Jail)

Note to women scorned everywhere: If you're going to throw your boyfriend's clothing in the tub and light it on fire -- a bad idea anyway -- definitely don't do it:

1) With your kids in the apartment
2) In front of the police

A woman who authorities said falsely accused three Duke University lacrosse players of rape four years ago has been found guilty by a North Carolina jury of misdemeanor child abuse and damaging property.

A Durham County jury on Friday convicted 32-year-old Crystal Mangum of contributing to child abuse or neglect, injury to personal property and resisting a public officer stemming from a February confrontation with her live-in boyfriend. Mangum was sentenced to time already served before she was released on bail earlier this year.

The jury deadlocked 9-3 on a felony arson charge, and Superior Court Judge Abraham Jones declared a mistrial.

Police said Mangum piled her boyfriend's clothing into a bathtub and set it on fire while her three children and two police officers were inside the apartment.

SOURCE: The Washington Post.

Fortunately for Mangum, she has already been freed and reunited with her children, who hopefully won't have to witness any more domestic drama. Judge Jones sentenced Mangum to 88 days in jail -- time she already served awaiting trial, according to the News & Observer.

Sheryl Huggins Salomon is managing editor of The Root.

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