NOVEMBER 25, 2008
Less than a month after the notoriously corrupt mayor of Michigan’s largest city went to jail for perjury, the politician who replaced him faces the same serious charge.
New Detroit Mayor Ken Cockrel, who replaced convicted felon Kwame Kilpatrick, lied on a sworn statement that he had no unpaid campaign fees or outstanding campaign finance reports when he filed papers to run for mayor earlier this year. Cockrel actually owed more than $40,000 and Michigan’s attorney general has launched a perjury investigation.
Michigan’s campaign finance law requires payment of all outstanding fines before running for public office and candidates must sign affidavits swearing compliance. The fines levied against Cockrel were connected with late reporting of campaign contributions.
It appears that perhaps the city’s new leader is following the disgraceful footsteps of its previous scandal-plagued mayor. Charged with nearly a dozen felonies, Kilpatrick is in jail for obstructing justice by lying under oath at a police whistleblower trial to cover an extra marital affair with a city staffer.
The trial centered on cops that had been wrongfully fired for asking questions that could have exposed the mayor’s undercover romance and Kilpatrick ended up orchestrating a secret city deal to pay the officers nearly $9 million for their troubles. Details of the scandalous settlement were only made public after a local newspaper filed a public records lawsuit.
Kilpatrick subsequently got charged with two additional felonies for assaulting a sheriff’s detective trying to serve a subpoena on one of his shady friends. The irate mayor pushed the detective and attacked him and his partner with profanity and racial remarks. Kilpatrick later violated the terms of his bond.
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