Former Detroit mayor (2002-2008), Kwame Kilpatrick, may not be solely responsible for the the city’s historic bankruptcy, but his racketeering and tax crimes undoubtedly exacerbated it. Kilpatrick not only stuffed his account with tens of thousands of dollars, but he also traveled the country in private jets and bullied his campaign fundraiser for stacks of hidden loot.
The 43-year-old was convicted of racketeering conspiracy, fraud, extortion and tax crimes back in March, after the government cracked down on him in their years-long plot to uncover fraudulent contractors. Kilpatrick’s own text messages revealed fixed deals and details about “lucrative deals” contractors were “forced” to take on.
According to evidence, Kilpatrick spent $840,000 beyond his salary during his time as mayor –– a scandal covered up by defense attorneys as money generously gifted to him by political supporters during holidays. He also exploited the nonprofit fund created to assist Detroit residents in need, to help pay for miscellaneous things like yoga and golf clubs.
Upon his departure, the city was put under an “emergency manager,” Kevyn Orr. Detroit voters will soon elect its third mayor since Kilpatrick quit office in 2008 due to a different impropriety.
As a result of all this, a federal judge sentenced Kilpatrick – on Thursday (October 10) – to serve 28 years in prison for corruption. SMH.