UPDATE: Mayor Kilpatrick Throws Microphone
Mayor Tells Associated Press Civic Fund Won't Change
The Action News investigation of money spent by a tax-exempt, non-profit group for Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick's lavish family vacation has taken an ugly turn. When confronted by Ray Sayah, the mayor threw his microphone down a hallway -- while a camera was rolling.
While he does his best to duck the latest controversy to dog him, our Action News investigative team has caught up with Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, literally, as he ran from questions. The issue, of course, is why he took at least 86-hundred from a tax-exempt civic fund for a family vacation at a swanky spa in California last summer. Our investigator Ray Sayah joins us now after an encounter which prompted a very angry response, didn’t it Ray?
It certainly did. Rremember, this is the same mayor who blamed a “lack of good communication” when Action News caught him being untruthful about that infamous Navigator…and tonight, it’s déjà vu all over again…and not just a lack of willingness to face the latest issue of mis-spending, but a decidedly uncivil response when we finally found him.
TO AVOID ANSWERING QUESTIONS, MAYOR KWAME KILPATRICK IS NOW THROWING THINGS…
(Sayah) “Mr Mayor, please. Won’t you answer?
THIS WAS THE UGLY SCENE MOMENTS AFTER ACTION NEWS POLITELY APPROACHED THE MAYOR TO ASK WHAT HAS NEVER BEEN ANSWERED… AND AS YOU CAN SEE, THE MAYOR APPARENTLY HAD A CHANGE OF HEART ABOUT PRESS RELATIONS.
(Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick/January 22, 2005) “I believe the Kilpatrick administration needs to communicate better with you. We have to do that.”
THAT’S WHAT HE TOLD REPORTERS IN THE WAKE OF THE NAVIGATOR DEBACLE… BUT NOW TWO YEARS LATER, EXPOSED AGAIN BY ACTION NEWS, THIS TIME FOR GOING ON A WEEK LONG FAMILY VACATION HERE AT CALIFORNIA’S LACOSTA RESORT AND SPA… PAID FOR BY AT LEAST 86-HUNDRED DOLLARS OF CIVIC FUND MONEY… MONEY THAT’S SUPPOSED TO HELP THE CITY OF DETROIT.
THE MAYOR HIMSELF WAS NOWHERE TO BE FOUND WHEN OUR CHIEF INVESTIGATIVE REPORTER STEVE WILSON BROKE THE STORY LAST WEEK.
INSTEAD, HE SENT HIS PRESS SECRETARY, HIS CHIEF OF STAFF AND A LAWYER FOR THE KILPATRICK CIVIC FUND TO CLAIM THIS WAS NO VACATION – INSTEAD THE MAYOR WAS HOLDING MEETINGS TO FUNDRAISE. WHEN THEY PRESENTED NOT A SHRED OF EVIDENCE THAT THE MAYOR MET ANYONE TO FUNDRAISE, WILSON PRESSED FOR PROOF.
(William Phillips/Attorney) ”We knew who he was going to meet with. (Wilson) And that’s not in any document that you’re going to release… (Phillips) We knew who he was going to meet with. I’m not going to talk to you about our documentation.”
THE MAYOR HIMSELF HAS ELUDED REPORTERS AND IGNORED OTHERS WHO ARE CALLING FOR HIM TO DISBAND HIS CIVIC FUND.
BUT WE FINALLY FOUND HIM AS HE ARRIVED FOR A SPEECH TO THE WASHTENAW ECONOMIC CLUB YESTERDAY. INSIDE, HERE’S WHAT THE MAYOR TOLD HIS AUDIENCE ABOUT WHAT IS WRITTEN AND SAID ABOUT HIM
(Mayor Kilpatrick) “Mostly it’s the legend of Kwame Kilpatrick…”
YOU CAN’T BELIEVE WHAT YOU READ ABOUT HIM IN ANY OF THE PAPERS, HE TOLD THEM. HE’S A VICTIM OF HIS OWN SUCCESS, HE SAYS.
(Mayor Kilpatrick) “I’m too popular once I’m in the paper. They sell more papers with me on it than any other person.”
AND TV NEWS? HE SUGGESTED STATIONS JUST WAIT TO MAKE UP STORIES ABOUT HIM DURING RATINGS PERIODS. (Mayor Kilpatrick) “When it’s sweeps week, like last week. Last week was sweeps week. I knew I was in trouble. … but most of all it’s the legend of Kwame Kilpatrick and it’s starting to go away.”
WHAT WON’T GO AWAY ARE THE QUESTINS HE JUST DOESN’T WANT TO FACE.
(Sayah) “Mr Mayor, may we have a moment? (Mayor) “See you later.” (Sayah) “Mr. Mayor, may we have a moment?”
WE EXPECTED HE’D DUCK OUT A BACK DOOR AND WHEN HE DID, OUR STEVE WILSON WAS IN THE BACK HALLWAY WAITING FOR HIM.
(Wilson) “Mr. Mayor?”
IT WAS WHILE HIS BODYGUARD WAS HOLDING BACK STEVE, THAT WE WENT TO A SIDE DOOR AND APPROACHED HIM AGAIN.
(Sayah) “Mr. Mayor, please.” (Mayor) “I’m not.” (Sayah) “Why not?” (Mayor) “Because I’m not.”
THAT’S WHEN THE YOUNGEST MAYOR OF ANY US CITY BEHAVED CHILDISHLY YOUNG. IN A FIT OF RAGE, HE GRABBED MY MICROPHONE AND WITHOUT ANY REGARD FOR ANYONE’S SAFETY, HE LAUNCHED THE STEEL OBJECT AWAY.
OUR MICROPHONE WAS GONE BUT WE STILL HAD OUR QUESTIONS…
(Sayah) “Who did you meet to fundraise at Lacosta Resort? A very simple question” …QUESTIONS THE MAYOR STILL REFUSES TO ANSWER.
(Sayah) “Mayor, the tax code clearly says that money is to help the city. (Mayor) “Have a good one. Take care.” (Sayah) “Did you use the money to help yourself to a vacation?”
THE QUESTION HERE FOR THE MAYOR IS VERY SIMPLE. IF HE DID FUNDRAISING OUT IN THIS RESORT IN CALIFORNIA, LIKE HIS SPOKESMAN SAYS HE DID, WHY CAN’T HE JUST TELL US WHAT HE DID? WHO HE MET WITH?
AND THE OTHER QUESTION… HOW DOES THE MAYOR JUSTIFY USING FUNDS SET ASIDE TO HELP THE CITY, TO TAKE HIS FAMILY ON A VACTION? http://www.wxyz.com/news/story.aspx?con ... 100dbef6af