Kwame Kilpatrick continued to make news outside of court Thursday while his corruption trial bogged down amid testimony from a federal agent.
Kilpatrick was sued by a contractor who called himself a victim of the alleged racketeering scheme at the heart of the City Hall corruption case.
Meanwhile, U.S. EPA Special Agent Carol Paszkiewicz spent several hours on the witness stand telling jurors about the ex-mayor’s text messages.
She reviewed thousands of Kilpatrick’s texts and said the ex-mayor exchanged messages with pal Bobby Ferguson about city deals.
Live Updates EndedPlease read below for an archived view of this event.
Defense lawyer Susan Van Dusen continues to recover from a nasty spill earlier this week that prompted a brief break in the City hall corruption trial.
U.S. District Judge Nancy Edmunds updated jurors on Van Dusen’s recovery three days after Bobby Ferguson’s defense attorney tripped and fell inside federal court. Van Dusen suffered facial injuries and was rushed to an area hospital.
“Ms. Van Dusen is continuing to recover and improve but she still has a way to go,” Edmunds told jurors. “She likely won’t be here tomorrow.”
We are still awaiting testimony from Detroit contractor Johnson Akinwusi, whose firm worked on an $8.5 million Recreation Department contract with Bobby Ferguson.
The project involved building a new Heilmann Recreation Center. Trouble ensued, leading, in part, to a $6 million judgment against Akinwusi and his firm, JOA Construction.
The judgment was listed in Akinwusi’s bankruptcy filing earlier this year.
Akinwusi filed Chapter 7 bankruptcy in July, listing more than $14 million in liabilities and about $513,000 in assets — including $8,000 in luxury watches.
Go ahead and read the bankruptcy docs while waiting for Akinwusi to take the witness stand.
A Detroit contractor who factors into the City Hall corruption trial sued ex-Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, his father and contractor Bobby Ferguson on Thursday, alleging the company was victimized by a secret racketeering scheme.
The federal lawsuit was filed by Detroit contractor Willie McCormick and Associates and quotes heavily from the federal indictment against Kilpatrick and cites Grosse Pointe Farms businessman Tony Soave’s testimony during the ongoing trial.
Prosecutors will focus today on an $8.5 million Detroit Recreation Department project awarded to a team that included Kwame Kilpatrick’s pal and co-defendant, Bobby Ferguson.
Ferguson worked on building the new Heilmann Recreation Center alongside Southfield-based JOA Construction. A JOA executive is expected to testify later today.
According to the city, the project south of State Fair and east of Hayes included a:
Gym, Pool, Dance/Aerobics Room, Weight Room, Men’s and Women’s Locker Rooms; Arts and Crafts Room; Kiln Room; Game Room; Multi-Purpose Room; Library; Kitchen and Administrative Offices. There is also an open-air atrium space large enough to accommodate large gatherings. The old building was demolished as part of this project and the area was graded and grass-seeded.
The Heilmann project led to a federal court lawsuit in 2007.
JOA and Akinwusi were sued by an insurance company for losses related to the Heilmann development and several other projects.
Several contractors were owed more than $170,000 for working on the Heilmann project, according to these federal court records.
The insurance company won a $6 million judgment against Akinwusi and JOA in March 2009.