Kilpatrick recycles suits for Detroit corruption trial

Dr. Ewart F. Brown, left, Bermuda premier and minister of Tourism and Transport, shares a laugh with Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick at the Bermuda Music Festival in the National Sports Center on Oct. 6, 2007 in Bermuda.

Kwame Kilpatrick is definitely a clothes horse, as my colleague Francis X. Donnelly proved today, but the rakish (alleged) racketeer is beating a dead horse.

The dapper Democrat appears to be wearing the same suits from as long as four years ago. Several of the suits are from the text-message scandal era and were worn to court by Kilpatrick in 2008.

A review of archived Detroit News photos contrasts with suggestions the comely ex-con is somehow bankrolling a new wardrobe while claiming to be indigent and getting a taxpayer-funded legal team.

More likely? The fashionable felon had the suits altered after shedding 50 pounds, experts told The News.

Here’s a side-by-side comparison of the peacockish pol:

Left, Kilpatrick and wife Carlita during an August 2008 court appearance. Right, Kilpatrick and attorney James Thomas outside federal court Aug. 21, 2012.

Left, former mayoral mistress Christine Beatty shakes hands with Kilpatrick on July 14, 2008 in a Detroit district courtroom. Right, Kilpatrick and co-defendant Bobby Ferguson leave federal court Aug. 8, 2012.


Left, Kilpatrick is seen leaving Windsor lawyer Cliff Sutts’ office in downtown Windsor in July 2008. Right, Kilpatrick and co-defendant Bobby Ferguson outside federal court Sept. 24, 2012.

Lastly, as any sartorial superhero knows, you have to accessorize.

Kilpatrick wore an ankle tether to a preliminary examination on assault charges in August 15, 2008, amid the text-message scandal.

Robert Snell
Robert Snell is the Detroit News federal courts reporter. He can be reached at or (313) 222-2028.