Discovery interviews Crystal Mangum for 'Wives with Knives'

CorrespondentJuly 15, 2012 

Just when you thought there couldn’t be another high-profile twist in the Crystal Mangum saga, a national television network plans to feature her in a new fall series “Wives with Knives.”

Mangum, 33, was interviewed in June for the series currently slated to premiere Nov. 23 on Investigation Discovery, part of the Discovery Communications family of television networks.

“Wives with Knives” profiles women “who are pushed to the brink and their only response is an act of violence,” according to information provided by network representative Debbie Gottschalk.

“This new series features riveting interviews with women who give insight into the personal experiences and struggles that led to their actions, illustrated by dramatic recreations that recount the traumatic events of each woman’s story,” according to network information. “Dr. Casey Jordan, a criminologist and attorney with more than 20 years of experience, conducts on-camera interviews and provides expert analysis on what drove these women to commit such crimes of passion, rage and desperation.”

Mangum was not paid for the interview, Gottschalk said.

In an interview at the Durham County Jail, where she is being held on a charge of murdering ex-boyfriend Reginald Daye, Mangum said the interview lasted three hours.

“It didn’t go as well as I wanted it to because I didn’t get a chance to talk about this case because they were so focused on the lacrosse case and the arson case,” Mangum said. “I didn’t really get to discuss what is going on with me right now.”

Mangum is the woman who accused members of the Duke lacrosse team of sexually assaulting her six years ago while she worked for an escort service. The charges were eventually dismissed by state Attorney General Roy Cooper when they were determined to be false.

In February 2010, police accused Mangum of slashing the tires of boyfriend Milton Walker’s vehicle, smashing the windshield with a vacuum cleaner and setting fire to a pile of his clothes in a bathtub while the police and her three children were in her apartment.

Mangum was convicted of child abuse, vandalism and resisting an officer (all misdemeanors), but not the felony arson charge.

In April 2011, Mangum was charged with the murder of Daye, 46. Police found him with one stab wound in the torso on April 3, 2011, at Mangum’s 3507 Century Oaks Drive apartment. She was charged with murder after Daye died April 13. Mangum supporters say she stabbed Daye with a steak knife in self-defense after he punched her, dragged her by her hair, kicked down a locked bathroom door, and continued to abuse her.

Mangum said she didn’t know the title of the Discovery show when she did the interview and regrets parts of it.

“There were some things that I wish I hadn’t talked about, just because it brought up old wounds and it took me a long time to try to deal with it,” Mangum said. “They actually had to increase my anxiety medication following that because I was having problems” after the interview.

Mangum’s attorney, Woody Vann, declined to comment. Mangum supporter Sidney Harr said he hopes the interview gives insight into the circumstances that resulted in her first-degree murder charge.

Harr is a co-founder of The Committee on Justice for Mike Nifong. The committee contends a corrupt judicial system is punishing Mangum for accusing three Duke University lacrosse players of rape in 2006.

Investigation Discovery plans to run six, one-hour “Wives with Knives” episodes. It isn’t clear when Mangum’s interview will appear, and the premiere date could change, Gottschalk said.

Another person who will be featured on the series is Donna Cobb, who was charged with murdering her abusive husband in New York in 2006, according to media accounts. Cobb was tried and found not guilty by reason of self-defense, according to information provided by the network.

Investigation Discovery delivers programming to more than 79 million U.S. households. Some of its shows include, “On the Case with Paula Zahn,” “I (Almost) Got Away with It,” and “Fatal Encounters.”

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