Kwame Kilpatrick complains about community service; fears he will end up back in prison

DETROIT (WXYZ) - In emails to the department of corrections, Kwame Kilpatrick says he's afraid he'll end up back in prison.

"I am not being sarcastic, nor facetious," he writes. "I am deadly serious."

Kilpatrick was worried about new parole conditions set for him last February. His monthly restitution went from $160 a month to $500.  Plus, the state wanted him to perform 16 hours of monthly community service.

Kilpatrick said that was just too much.

"I am a servant," Kilpatrick writes. "I have participated in clean-up initiatives, as well as other great community events. But I have not come close to doing it for 16 hours every month."

He tells officials that his family has only one car, and that he can't possibly devote the time to service—about 4 hours a week—unless something changes.

"It seems that at the same time you are asking me to PAY MORE, you are asking me to work less," he wrote.  "Or, God forbid, spend less time as an involved parent and husband."

As it is now, Kilpatrick said, he's having a hard enough time juggling his wife's new job, kid's activities at school and all of his speeches, which he's been making across the country and charging a fee.

According to the e-mails, Kilpatrick has booked three speeches for March and four for April. 

The former mayor also complains that some of the state's new parole conditions are vague or confusing.  One new rule requires him to disclose any money he makes from a book published by his sister Ayanna called: 'Surrendered: The Rise, Fall and Revelation of Kwame Kilpatrick.'

But Kilpatrick says he has no ownership in the publishing company or in the book, and hasn't received a dime. 

In his closing paragraph, the former mayor reminds officials that he's already spent 14 months in prison for a probation violation and he urges them to clear up or revise the new rules, writing:

"I don't want this to be, yet again, another moving target that makes it impossible for me to be successful."

State officials responded to Kilpatrick, and had no sympathy, telling him that the new rules weren't negotiable. 

Apparently, Kilpatrick got the message.

Despite his complaints, department of corrections officials say Kilpatrick has met all of their new conditions, volunteering at a Texas food bank and meeting the 16-hour mandate.

READ THE TEXT OF THE EMAILS BELOW:

Tuesday, February 14, 2012 12:37:21 PM

Mr. Matson and Mr. Combs,

For the record. I am fully committed to paying my restitution obligation to the City of Detroit. I have absolutely nothing to hide, and have been completely open, honest, and timely with all that has been requested from me. My role of husband and father is consistently being challenged and inhibited by much of what is going on, but I have even managed to work through those issues as well. I have been out of prison for 6 months. It has been a much tougher transition that I thought it would. But, I know that if allowed the same freedom, as all other parolees, to work, earn, re-establish relationships, and create opportunities, I will be able to meet, or even exceed, your expectations.

I have booked many more dates for speeches, and have more book signings scheduled for this month, March and even April. Things are finally moving. I know that the parole board, in Michigan, is under tremendous scrutiny, from the press and the public, to aggressively monitor me. I would only respectfully and humbly request, that this tenacity around my supervision doesn't create a situation of abject discrimination, which renders more harm to me, my family, and the Michigan citizenry.

As I know that one of the goals of the Michigan Parole Board is to promote a positive transition back to the community for inmates. I want to be an example of this transition. Neither Michigan, nor Texas is concerned at all with my committing another crime, using drugs or alcohol, or having any other violations to my parole. The ONLY issue seems to be setting a fair monthly restitution amount. That being the case, I will continue to work with both Texas and Michigan to bring closure to this outstanding issue, for the betterment of all involved. Particularly my wife and children.

Respectfully submitted,
Kwame Kilpatrick

Tuesday, March 06, 2012 6:54:50 PM

Mr. Matson,

I received the MDOC's new Special Conditions of Parole, today, March 6th. Today was the first day that I had seen them. My regularly scheduled parole office meeting was today, and my parole officer, Ms. Menyfield, went through the document with me. After reviewing the document, I had a few questions that I needed answered to better understand the new conditions. After conferring with Ms. Menyfield, it was decided that I should reach out to you, for further clarification. Being that the MDOC are the authors of these new conditions, and have stated, in the document, that "failure to follow these and any other conditions may result in loss of parole and return to prison," I believe that you are the best people to help me clearly understand what you are now insisting that I do. Especially, since my freedom is at issue.

My questions are:

1. (Issue 99.1) I am not now, nor have I ever been party to any book contract, including Surrendered: The Rise, Fall and Revelation of Kwame Kilpatrick. I have absolutely no ownership, interest, board position, employment or role in Aktion Enterprises. I don't receive a report on gross sales, revenue or any other report from the book. I have not received any money, proceeds, etc from the book. I don't have access to the information requested, nor do I believe at a time when there is a significant issue pertaining to book proceeds, being discussed in the Michigan Courts, that I will be able to get access to this information.

I have no way of performing the Special Condition that you have required in 99.1. I want to fully comply with what you are requesting from me, but before I sign the form, I would need some clarification and direction on this matter.

2. (Issue 99.2) I have absolutely NO IDEA what you are asking me to give the Parole Agent, in this Special Condition. I don't know what would be considered "Kwame Kilpatrick's intellectual property rights." I also don't believe that I have negotiated, transferred, assigned or implicated by agreement my "intellectual rights." But maybe I'm wrong. Please make this more clear for me to understand. Again, I have NO IDEA how to comply with this special condition. Which also means that I have now way of appropriately, accurately and successfully performing this Special Condition that you have required in 99.2. I want to fully comply with what you are requesting from me, but before I sign, I would need some clarification and direction on this matter.

3. (Issue 99.5) In this Special Condition, you are requiring me to perform 16 hours of community service per month, and provide written documentation to the Parole Agent each month, that this community service has been successfully completed. I learned today, from my Parole Officer, that all of my community service must be done in Texas. A TDCJ Supervisor wrote that "This is my community." I understand, and agree. As I stated in previous communications, my family has one car. Unlike Michigan, Texas is HUGE. You must take the Highway, or a Tollway to get anywhere, and many neighborhoods are not walkable, including mine. NOTHING is walking distance away from my home. Any community service will require me driving to it. My wife is now working, and our 3 children (2 teenagers and a 10 year old) are very active, i.e., Football, Basketball, Track, Soccer, Debate Team, Chess, Martial Arts, etc. I have already booked 3 speeches for March, and I have 4 more bookings for April. I will be on the road 9 days in the Month of March, alone. Even more in April.

I believe that one of the most important goals of the parole process is to reconnect offenders with their families. This goal has been achieved by supporting the offender in participating with his/her family in their education, student activities and always changing lives. I am a servant. I would continue to serve, even without this requirement. I speak at Churches, Schools, Non-profit Organizations throughout this community, because I want to share my testimony and serve my community. I have participated in clean-up initiatives, as well as other great community events. But I have not come close to doing it for 16 hours every month. And much of this was done before the tremendous amount of
new bookings.

Because you have issued these new Special Conditions as compulsory compliance, or face "loss of parole and return to prison," I wanted to raise this as a concern now. It seems that at the same time you are asking me to PAY MORE (Special Condition 99.4), you are asking me to work less. Or, God forbid, spend less time as an involved parent and husband.

I believe that it is going to be very difficult to meet the requirement of this special condition each month, because of my work schedule alone. I understand what you are asking me to do. And I truly want to serve the community as much as I can. BUT even more, I don't want to experience a "loss of parole and return to prison" because I was working to pay more restitution, and take care of my family. Is there further clarification and direction that you can give me on this special condition? If I only do 14 hours of community service, am I in violation of my parole order? Or, if I have 7 dates for paid speeches out of town, which forces me to be gone for nearly half the month, should I cancel a couple of them to make sure that I perform my 16 hours of "TEXAS" community service?

I am not being sarcastic, nor facetious. I am deadly serious. This new requirement could force me into prison. I have the experience of being sent to prison for a "supposedly" having a technical violation to a probation order, even after there was unilateral agreement that I fully complied with EVERY other part of that order, as well as a very positive evaluation from TDCJ. I don't want this to be, yet again, another moving target that makes it impossible for me to be successful.

i am humbly requesting to absolutely know what you are requesting of me with this community service issue, and how much ability Texas has to assure its purpose, without creating a situation of certain failure, i.e., failing to pay the additional money that you have required, meet the community service hours requirement, or further promoting absent men, husbands and fathers in the household.

Respectfully,
Kwame Kilpatrick

ATTACHMENT FROM 3/6/2012 EMAIL

Kilpatrick - Attachment From 3-6-12

Friday, March 09, 2012 9:28:36 AM

Mr. Kilpatrick,

The Michigan Interstate Compact Unit reviewed the e-mail you submitted regarding the special conditions that you were served with on March 6, 2012 by Texas authorities. Pursuant to Michigan Department of Corrections policy and administrative rule, the special conditions imposed are immediately valid upon your receipt of those conditions. Also, in accordance with Interstate Rules, the Michigan Parole Board may impose special conditions during your period of supervision. Texas will advise Michigan of non-compliance with any conditions.

Don Matson, Supervisor/DCA
Interstate Compact Unit
IAD Administrator
Michigan Department of Corrections
206 E. Michigan Ave.
Lansing, MI 48933
matsond@michigan.gov

Print this article Back to Top

Comments