Kilpatrick trial: Witness admits he lied in email to boss

(WXYZ) - The Kilpatrick corruption trial was full of curse words and accusations of lying on Thursday.

Now we know why the lawyers asked potential jurors during jury selection about how hard it was for them to hear swear words--because there has been a lot of cussing in this case.

Defense lawyers got a key witness to admit that he lied to his bosses in an email that's become evidence – and the F-bombs were flying.

Defense lawyers went for the jugular with government witness Bernard Parker III. On Wednesday, Parker told the jury in the Kilpatrick corruption trial that the former mayor held up contracts unless the companies Parker was working with put the mayor's friend on their team.

On Thursday, documents introduced suggested the dates on those records and Parker's claims don't quite line up.

Kwame Kilpatrick, his father Bernard Kilpatrick, and former city contractor Bobby Ferguson are on trial, accused of running a criminal enterprise out of city hall.

Parker is a business development executive, and worked for several different companies that had city water department contracts, including Walbridge Aldinger.

Kilpatrick Attorney Jim Thomas suggested to Parker that Walbridge Chairman John Rakolta described Parker as a "BS artist" who "oversold" himself about his contacts inside the Kilpatrick administration. Parker said he wasn't aware that Rakolta had said that.

The defense also painted Parker as a schmoozer, showing emails where he asked other Walbridge employees for tickets to events like a Jamie Foxx concert or a Katt Williams show for former Kilpatrick aides Christine Beatty, Derrick Miller, as well as water department insiders.

On Wednesday, when federal prosecutors questioned Parker, he said Walbridge executives were worried they wouldn't get a $75 million sewer contract if Ferguson wasn't added to their team, but on Thursday Ferguson lead attorney Gerald Evelyn showed Parker four different documents that pre-dated Walbridge's contract with Ferguson Enterprises – all of which showed the city was giving them the work.

"He did not stand up under cross examination, and that's the bottom line," said Ferguson attorney Mike Rataj.

Then, Evelyn showed the jury an email that Parker had sent to his bosses when he worked at Insituform. Insituform was a subcontractor on a $50 million sewer lining contract.

In the email, Parker said he had spoken to a "high level appointee" in the Kilpatrick administration, and suggested the companies increased earnings were due to Parker. The email went on to say that the appointee said the company should "re-assess their corporate citizenship" in the city.

Parker then admitted he never talked to an appointee and said he was referring to Ferguson. Evelyn practically shouted at him, "Either you were lying to your bosses or you're lying to this jury."

Parker said: "I lied to my bosses." Evelyn fired back with "You will (lie) if you think there's an advantage for you."

"I know the jury is paying attention and they're listening. They're going to do what they're going to do with it," said Rataj.

Parker then said he didn't tell his bosses that he had actually spoken to Ferguson – because they didn't want to work with Ferguson. Parker went on to say Ferguson said nothing about corporate citizenship – he allegedly said "Expletive you better think about what's going on."

"We still have more – as you can see I was jumping up and ready to go," said Thomas.

Parker will be back on the stand Friday.
 

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