Live Blog: Kwame Kilpatrick Trial Day 14 - Fox 2 News Headlines

Live Blog: Kwame Kilpatrick Trial Day 14

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Detroit (MyFoxDetroit) -


Judge say "that's all she's going to say about it. 

Rataj complains they don't have a witness list yet.  Judge orders it presented by 3pm this afternoon.  Hot and heavy there for a few minutes.  The jury was not in the room and the players dropped their gloves.

They're going to be back at 8:30 tomorrow.

So a new Chapter in the trial will open tomorrow, the Extortion chapter.  And they've got issues to work out about the rules of introducing evidence.


Chutkow takes "umbridge."  Judge orders prosecution to produce evidence as soon as they have it.

Van Dusen asking why they didn't get a transcript of grand jury testimony from 6 years ago.  Chutkow says the testimony wasn't transcribed and as soon as it was it was given to the defense.



Evelyn wants plenty of notice on what the prosecution  is going to use.  Rataj complaining now that prosecution is dragging it's feet in getting defense evidence .  Rataj says you've got to put a stop to this.  Judge says she doesn't think Prosecutors are playing this game, that they've presented a pretty open file.

Rataj says "open file is a bold faced lie" and Judge tells him to sit down.  He' hot.


Judge says they should take this up in the morning.  Evelyn says this just opens up the case to introduce hearsay evidence.  Judge says she agrees with him.  It will have to be a narrowly crafted ruling.


Fist issue, Hobbs Act.  This is the extortion side of the case which they'll be moving to tomorrow.  Chutkow says the issue involve the chances of keeping a contract if a business didn't do business with Ferguson.

Says the victims are going to say it was understood that the victims new without having to be told that they had to do business with Ferguson or else.

Exploitation through fear and apposed to direct exploitation.


Bullotta asks Shook to read from Subpoena to 30 different Mayor organizations,  she read "all records for all events.

Bullotta also asks if Shook remembers Thomas asking anything about the Denver Mayor before today and she says no.

The jury has been excused and now the Judge is asking the attorneys to address legal issues before the court.


Thomas wants to know if Shook called the Denver Mayor's office to find out what happened, did she do anything other that task a secretary to find out about the Mayor's conferences?  Shook says no.


Thomas asking about US Conf of Mayors.  Shook says she called the Conf president. Thomas asks if there might have been other meetings not listed on the official schedule. ( Oh so we've got a secret meeting of the US conference of Mayors in Colorado at the time Kwame was there)

Shook says she can't rule out an unscheduled meeting.  (she can't rule out little green men either I bet.)

Thomas is asking her to disprove a negative.  He's really stretching the point here.  Unless he's got something up his  sleeve here, like a witness who belongs to some conference of Mayor's that will testify he or she had a meeting with Kwame in Colorado.


Thomas now asking about Mayor's conference.  This should be good.

Thomas wants to know if Shook checked to see if Kwame was a member of the other Mayors Conferences.  Shook says yes.


Shea asks if Shook knew if there was SuperBowl planning going on at the time.  She says she's unaware.


Shea now asking if Shook sees another card issued on the account.  Agent Shook says yes.  There may be someone else using the account.

Shea asks if Ayanna used card.  Shook says she's not on the account but could be an authorized signer on the account.


Looking at a Visa, Bullotta asks if there's a 2700 credit, Shook says yes.  Also a credit on MC account.

Shea up now, asking if go verified records to show Bernard was in New Orleans.  This is from Shea's questioning yesterday where he called into question whether the government could show that BErnard was actually in New Orleans.  The Civic Fund has appeared to pay for a hotel in New Orleans.

So now we know Bernard was there at that time, he's paid for the hotel, and made other charges.


Now looking at a Citi Card Master CArd statement from Feb 2006.  Says it's a Master Card account.  THere's a Feb 3 and a Jeweler's in New Orleans for $400.


Shook says there's a restaurant bill in New Orleans and a charge to the Hilton.  Feb 2002


Bullotta now asking about Bernard's credit card.  Looking at Diner's Club card statement.


Shook found the National Conference of Democratic Mayors.  Notification that there are no records for Nov of 2002 when Kwame was in Colorado.  REmember Thomas asked if it were possible that his trip wit Beatty coincided with a Mayor's conference.

Shook also found a Conference of Black Mayors.  No events in Colorado.  No events in Co for the US conference of Mayors either.

and no little green men.  (see second entry)


Shook says she could not find Jim Thomas' National Conference of Mayors.  Did find the US conference of Mayors and came up with a schedule for 2002. 


Special AGent Molina Shook on witness stand now.  Works for IRS.  Bullotta did not have her spell her name so I'm guessing here.


Mercado's other attorney John Minnock asks if Upmeyer know how much money Tetra Tech made per year with the Water and Sewerage Dept.  Upmeyer says he couldn't come up with figure off the top of his head.


Thomas asks if his company reimburses for travel and he says yes.

Thomas asks if would be possible that the Civic Fund would send people out of town to raise money.  Prine says yes.

Thomas is done.


Upmeyer looks at check for $4,000 and says that's his company's donation.

Thomas on cross now.  Asks if Upmeyer if he knows what a civic fund is.  Upmeyer says he doesn't know the particulars of how funds work.  Says he doesn't know what happened to the money.


Doeh is waking Upmeyer through the same line of questioning as the earlier contributors.

Interesting note, Mercado and his attorney are not in the court room today.  The Judge excused them to review documents in another part of the building.


Upmeyer reads, "no funds will be donated to a Political campaign."

Says contribution check came from home office in California.


New witness is David Upmeyer, worked for TetraTech in 2008.  Did engineering work with WAter and Sewerage Department.  Was asked to contribute to Civic Fund.

Reading from solicitation letter.  May 23rd 2008, fax date is June 16 2008, attention Christopher Jackson.  Upmeyer doesn't know Jackson.  Says he discussed request with his manager and concluded it would be a good thing to contribute to.

Upmeyer says he reviewed "purpose" of the Fund and ultimately contributed $4,000.


Doeh asks if Loop CApital purchased Prine's golf clubs.  Prine says no.  He excused.


Thomas is walking Prine through a list of things that would be appropriate uses of the Fund's money.

ASks if Prine met Beasley.  Prine says conversations with Beasley helped him decided to contribute to fund.


Prine agrees the Civic Fund would have expenses, would reimburse travel.

Prine is a CAss tech graduate.


Thomas asks if Prine delivered money to fund.  Prine says the checks were sent by mail.


Thomas asking Fund being governed by officers and board of directors.  ASks if purpose of the Civic Fund is there to donate money.  Prine says he doesn't understand the question.   Thomas asks if he understands the directors of the fund do work.  Prine says yes.

Thomas asking now about the Fund's purpose to redevelop the positive image of Detroit.  Prine says yes.

Thomas asks if he thought the letter contained an exhaustive list.  Prine says no.


Prine's say he would invite business folks to participate in foursome at a golfing outing to spend time with and talk business with.

Now looking at solicitation letter.


Thomas asks Prine if he does business on the golf course.  SAys yes, most golf now though is at outings where they talk about business.  Wonder if he say "THe Mayor" golf bag.


Court is back in session.  THe judge asked the Prosecutors to have the witnesses spell the names of their company names.  So it's not just me that's having a hard time hearing.

Thomas is cross examining Prine from Loop Capital, L-o-o-p, out of Chicago.


Taking a 20 minute break now. All the attorney's are now up at the bench talking to the Judge.  Kwame and Bobby are talking at the back of the room. Bobby is animatedly gesturing.  Kwame gestures back with a single hand chop.  Now Bernard is joining the conversation.  Wish I could hear what they're talking about.


Prine's says in 2008 the company did not contribute because he heard news reports about fund, had conversations with company compliance officers, and decided not to contribute.

PRine says he met Jeff Beasley, Detroit Treasurer, didn't know he had connection to Fund.  Says he told Beasley that they were not going to contribute that year, because it didn't pass compliance process.


Prine says  Loop contributed 4 times, $10,000 each time.  They have three of the checks in court now.


Prine reads from letter, "no funds will be contributed to a political campaign.  Looking at $10,000 donation check now.

Doeh asks where check came from.  Prine say it came from Corp office in Chicago.  Jim Pappas name is under Kilpatrick Civic fund on check.


ASsistant Pros Doeh asks if Prine relied on letter to determine whether they'd contribute.  says they contributed through 2007 but stopped in 2008.  Says compliance officer reviewed request and department head approved.


Prine says he remembers getting a letter from the Civic Fund that outlines the purpose of the Fund and thanks him for contributing.


New witness.  Fred Prine, investment banker, Loop Capital out of Chicago.  He manages the Detroit office.  Does business with the City providing financial services.  Started in "97 through today.


Thomas asking about lease now.  Thomas asks if $14,500 divided by 6 is $2350.  Salaam says it looks like they only asked for a 1 month security deposit.

says she wasn't a part of determining why the Civic Fund paid for 4 months of the lease.


Thomas asks if Kwame related to her that he needed a place for his family to go while he was "away."  She says yes.  ASks if "away" is a euphemism for "jail."  She says she didn't know for sure he was going to jail.

Thomas asks if $9400 check was for 4 month lease and she says they may have put that down but the lease was for 6 months.

says she doesn't know why the check was broken out for 4 moths.


Thomas asks if Kilpatrick's kid's school is nearby.  She says yes.


Looking at more checks now. Another  $2350 for the security deposit.

Thomas up now.


Looking at checks now, $4,700 from Kwame's personal account, $9,400 check from Civic Fund, and a $1050 check from the Civic Fund.


Introducing Leasing contract as evidence.  Regality Business MGT SErvices.  Security deposit, cable, 6 month lease, total is $17,500.

Says she got checks which she got personally  from the Mayor.


Says the floor plan didn't work for them so they moved on to look at a condo in the Park Shelton.  2 full bathrooms and attached parking.  6 month lease.


Says she was asked by a colleague to show a property to a high profile client.  Says she met the Mayor to show him the property.  Says the Mayor was looking for something with 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms.


Thomas is done and Butler is stepping down.  Next up is realtor Aaliyah Salaam.


Thomas wants to know if she knows the difference between a 501c3 and a 501c4.  Butler says no.

Looking at solicitation letter now.  Wants to know if she knows Christopher Jackson.  She says yes. Says she met Jackson when he worked for Councilman Gil Hill.

Butler say she has no personal knowledge if the funds were mis-used-used.

Thomas wants to know if she knew the Fund was helping 5 year old she'd have contributed and she says she can't speculate she only knows what was outlined in the letter.


Thomas up now. Asks if she knew Dennis Archer or Freeman Hendrix and if she donated to their campaigns.  Butler says she doesn't know if her company made any donations. 


Butler says her firm donated $5000 based on the philanthropic goals outlined in the "purpose" statement.  It's Capri Capitol.  I've got the get the wax out of my ears.  Capri is based in Chicago.

Butler says they would not have made the donation had they known the money was going to pay for personal expenses or the campaign.


Assistant PRosecutor Blackwell asking her about donating to the Civic Fund and asking Butler to read the purpose of the Fund.  Get out the vote, cosponsoring Jr football, improving lives of residents and no funds are donated to any political campaign.


On the stand now, Ms. Butler from Dupree Partners, another firm that worked for the Detroit Pensions.


Bird says she doesn't know about this fund or that fund she used the money in a constructive way.

No further questions.


Bird says others donated things, time, food, and many different things besides money.  Says Carlita was very involved in school and was aware of the planning for grad week.

Bird says she didn't have a conversation with CArlita about a check but did talk to her about what they'd do of the weather got bad.

Bird says the events were open to the community because the school was in a residential neighborhood.


Thomas asks what tuition was back then.  Bird says $90 to $135 per child.


Thomas trying to determine where the school was, Bird identifies a lot of roads Thomas is unfamiliar with, says he's a white kid from the east side, help me out.  Bird laughs and says 8 mile and Greenfield area.


Thomas on cross.  ASking about education being involved in preschool and kindergarten activities.  Asks if the kids were graduating, Bird says yes.


Bird says the school got no more donations from the school after the kids graduated.


Bird says at the time the Grad Week events were held on the school grounds.  They needed a tent in case of inclement weather.  Bird says getting a big check was not unusual but she can't recall getting another check like that.  Says CArlita delivered the check.


Bird says Kilpatrick's boys attended the school.  Says graduation week has several events including a trip, breakfast, and prom, along with the graduation ceremony.

Bullotta asks if she got a check.  She says yes, from the Civic Fund and the kids' parent Kwame and CArlita Kilpatrick.  Says the kids participated in the events.


Not too much later.  Linda Bird is up right now.  She's co-owner of step ahead.  Bullotta did not ask her to spell her name, it sounded like Bird, may be Berg.


Thomas on cross, wants to know if Kwame paid the STep Ahead bills out of his personal account.  Sauer says he's not sure.  Asks about $5000 check from Civic Fund and if Sauer knows what graduation week was about.  Sauer says no. 

The kids' preschool teacher Ms. Bird has been mentioned.  She'll be testifying later.  Thomas is done and Sauer is stepping down.


Ferguson's attorney Gerald Evelyn on cross.  ASking if about the first check heck to Beatty's company Maiyen Consulting for $50,000.  Wants to know if the donation of 75 grand was to cover payment to Beatty's company.  Sauer says he can't make a direct correlation.


Now looking at a check to "the Step Ahead" preschool for $5000.  Signed by Beatty and Kilpatrick.  This is for the graduation ceremony.  Bullotta asks Sauer if he remembers Thomas saying the Kilpatrick children had already graduated then the check was written.  Sauer says he does.

Now looking at a check for $156 from Kwame to the school to pay for a school trip to Cedar Point.


ASsistant Prosecutor Bullotta is showing a check made payable to Christine Beatty's company and another from Ferguson Enterprises to the Civic Fund for $75,000.  Now a third check to Beatty's company, this one for $60,000.


"all rise."  Court is in session and Agent Sauer is taking the witness stand.


The other thing I learned is that what the attorneys ask in court doesn't have to be grounded in fact.  In fact, it doesn't have to be anything real at all.  The Judge has instructed the Jury on more than one occasion that they are to listen to the witness' testimony and weigh those words when considering the facts of the case, and not consider the what the attorneys are saying as facts.

This became clear to me when Kwame's attorney asked about the possibility that his client may have been hanging out at a swanky resort in Colorado because he might have been attending a Mayor's conference.  Turns out Thomas could have asked if it were possible that his client was in Colorado to meet the  flying saucer and greet the little green men from Mars.  That's because there was  no conference.

Of course you can't prove that there are little  green men from Mars.  But Jim Thomas might reply that you can't prove that there aren't.  He made a similar statement in court yesterday when the he Judge admonished him for asking questions that had no basis in fact.  He sat down after that.

We'll see today if that defense strategy continues.


So here's what I learned yesterday:  Even America's #1 Crisis Manager couldn't do much to help Kwame Kilpatrick and why the Judge keeps telling the jurors that what the attorneys say is not fact, they have to listen to the answers.

It's telling that the lady in charge of managing Kilpatrick's text message crisis wound up testifying for the prosecution.  Judy Smith has had an amazing career, even  has a television show based on her life.  Still, she was called to the witness stand to tell jurors how she got paid.  And it turns out she's like a lot of other people who testified so far.  She wasn't much concerned about where the  money was coming from as long as the check was good.  As Kwame's attorney Jim Thomas brought out in her testimony, it wasn't Judy who decided which account the check was going to be written on.

It's also telling that when she left the building she didn't stop to talk to the press. I didn't see her, I'm getting this second hand from the other journalists who tried to talk to her.  I wonder if that was her Crisis management plan?  It seems to me that testify8ing against a client is in itself a crisis of a sort.  It's sure not something you'd want to ad to your resume.

8:37 am

Good Morning from the Theodore Levin Court House in the damp downtown of the Motor City.

-Ken Martinek is Senior Producer -Investigations for Fox 2 News

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