Ray Nagin and the Phantom Menace

With the U.S. Attorney and the FBI looking into possible impropriety in the awarding of technology contracts by the City of New Orleans, suddenly Mayor Ray Nagin’s email records have gone AWOL.

Mayor Ray Nagin says e-mail experts erred

Assigning blame “is not their charge, ” Nagin said Thursday, a day after two computer experts hired by the city said that an unknown tech-savvy person apparently removed the mayor’s e-mail inbox from the server.

In a WWL-TV interview, Nagin dismissively described the unknown individual as “some phantom employee.” …

In their news conference, Lewis and Christopher Reade, a partner in Carrollton Technology Partners, said 22 gigabytes of information had been removed from the server the day they started the project in May.

Of 59 mailboxes that were on that server, they said, Nagin’s was the only one that was missing. Because of the access and the expertise that task would require, Reade said, it had to be deliberate.

“This had to be something that someone would actually do, ” he said. “You can’t just hit ‘delete’ in your computer and it goes away. . . . The average person, even the average techie, would not know how to do that.”

No, wait. The cat ate my email. That’s the ticket…