DETROIT (WXYZ) - Once billed as Detroit’s hip-hop mayor, Kwame Kilpatrick left office in the midst of scandal, and now faces decades behind bars.
Federal prosecutors say Kilpatrick ran a criminal enterprise, rigging bids to enrich his family and friends and using his non-profit fund as a personal piggy bank. Kilpatrick is facing several federal charges, including racketeering, money laundering, bribery, extortion, and mail fraud.
The son of former U.S. Congresswoman Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick, Kwame Kilpatrick rose to power first in the state House of Representatives, and in 2002 he was sworn in as Detroit’s 60 th mayor. Within months, scandal started to swirl around the 32-year old politician, which lead to years of controversy including:
-rumors of a wild party at the Manoogian Mansion;
-misuse of city credit cards and non-profit funds;
-an affair with his long-time friend and Chief of Staff, Christine Beatty;
-firing Detroit Police Internal Affairs Deputy Chief Gary Brown, which sparked the Whistleblower lawsuit that lead to the release of the text messages that showed Kilpatrick and Beatty lied on the witness stand;
-state charges of perjury and obstruction of justice;
-failure to pay his restitution properly, which landed Kilpatrick in state prison;
-grand jury indictment that outlines dozens of federal charges.
Kilpatrick’s attorney, Jim Thomas, has said there is a defense in the federal case, and that his client
maintains his innocence.
Kilpatrick now faces a series of racketeering, extortion, tax and bribery charges in the federal corruption case.
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