Live Blog: Kwame Kilpatrick Trial Day 50 - Los Angeles News | FOX 11 LA KTTV

Live Blog: Kwame Kilpatrick Trial Day 50

Updated:
DETROIT -

Disclosed, not disclosed, doesn't matter now Because we're stopping for the day.  Judge Edmunds wishes the jury a good evening.  And Kwame's boyhood  pal leaves the stand.  M.L. Elrick will have a lot more about  that long relationship tonight on Fox 2 news at 5, Plus his unique takeaway on MyFoxDetroit.com.

I'll be back tomorrow, and like Judge Edmunds, wish you a good beleiving as well.

12:52

Thomas asks miller about splash in news about Rutherford's contribution to the Civic Fund.

Thomas asks if they talked to William Phillips the fund lawyer about the legality of the contribution.  Miller says at the time he argued that the contribution was legal.

Thomas shows the check, July 2 2001, says you can see it was deposited, it was cashed and put into the civic fund account, went in July 10th or 11th.

Thomas says this was the controversy, that you decided not to disclose it.  Miller says it wasn't just him, Kwame was there too and they didn't have to disclose donors.

Thomas says isn't it true that it was disclosed and that's different than what you said.  Miller says we decided not to disclose it but it was eventually disclosed.

Thomas says he's confused.  Funny, for the first time all day I'm not.


Thomas says you're testifying not hat even though you decided not to disclose it you did disclose it.  Miller says yes.

It seems pretty clear that what they decided really didn't matter since the free press article
Thomas is referring to already let the cat out of the bag.

Chutkow is objecting and we're getting another sidebar.

12:46

Thomas asks if "riverfront" is a general statement. Miller says it's hard to say that's a general statement when the riverfront was a pretty well defined area and the place on the riverfront was really well defined.

Thomas says once the deal was cut there were no casinos on the riverfront.  Miller says right, at that time.

Miller says the number of times the met it was all related to developing a casino.  Tomas asks if Paul sTillman was an architect involved in construction out in Vegas.  Miller says he was probably involved as with a lot of people building casinos.

Thom's asks if Sands CAsino owner Sheldon adleson had experience with conversations centers.  Miller says yes.

Thomas asks in 2002 do you remember the date the deal with the casinos was made.  No.  I I showed you a newspaper clipping?  Sure.


Miller says the date was Aug 3 2002, looks like.

Thomas asks once that was done you all went about running the business of the city of Detroit.  yes.  asks if he recalls the things he had to do, do you recall you were 31?  I was 32.

Department head had to be replaced.  Yes.  Collective bargaining units had to be negotiated with.  yes.  the deficit.  Yes.  Bargaining was going to be difficult.  Yes.

Thomas says snow wasn't being plowed and Grass wasn't being cut.

Chutkow objects as irrelevant.  Judge over rules but tell Thomas to speed it up.

Thomas asks if, and he list them all individually, if department heads had to be replaced.

Thomas asks if Charlie Williams the head of the water department left and his replacement was a lawyer and what Williams relationship with her was.

Chutkow objects.  Judge sustains.

Thomas asks if he was physically and emotionally affected. WEre you losing your hair.  No.  So you had no anxiety. 

Thomas asks what does it mean to be a principled person?  Miller says I'm asking you what you meant by being principled.  Thomas says did you and Kwame and Beatty work hard and have the city's best interest at heart.  Yes.

Thomas asks if Cobo wasn't originally involved in plans for the casinos.

Thomas asks what Cobo's status was at the time.  Miller says what do you mean but status.

Thomas asks if the suburbs were making threats to take it over and was it in debt and needed to be expanded.  Yes.

Thomas says the auto dealers didn't want to come anymore.  Miller says it wasn't that they didn't want to come, they wanted improvement.

Thomas asks about putting slots at Cobo.  Miller says there was never any talk about putting slots in Cobo. 

Thomas asks if Rutherford ever got past square on putting slots in Cobo.  Miller agrees.

12:28

Thomas asks what happened to the property?  Miller says the value went up.  Thomas asks if 125 million was spent on 25 acres and more land needed to be bought.  Miller says right.  Thomas asks where the most expensive land in the county was, wasn't it the Detroit Riverfront.  Miller laughs ironically and says he can't testify to that.

Thomas asks if Rutherford at some point testified he was interested in a casino.  Miller says he didn't hear his testimony.  Thomas asks did' you read it.  No.  Didn't anyone tell you about it?  No.

Thomas asks Rutherford was never in consideration for a casino license.  Right.  Thomas says you at some point became involved negotiating with the casinos. Yes.

asks if Miller became engaged in saving the riverfront from the casinos.  Miller asks him to ask the question again.

Miller says he was a part of renegotiating with the casinos and restructuring the deal (and moving them off the riverfront.)

Thomas says this was in advantage to the city. Miller says he agrees, the financial consideration for paying back the casinos.  The loan they gave the city to buy land was forgiven.  The construction time frame was sped up, the permanent casinos would be on line sooner.

Miller says he doesn't know if the casinos wanted to stay where they were but that was an advantage to the city.  Says the sooner the permanent casinos were running the sooner the revenue to the city would increase.

Thomas asks if the police department got more money.  Miller says yes, but he doesn' remember specifics.  Amazing, all this casino money and the city is still broke.

Thomas asks if Kwame took the position during the election that no casinos would be built on the river.  Miller says yes.

12:18

Kwame is having a what looks like a come to Jesus talk with Thomas. Thomas places his hand on his shoulder and nods his head in what looks like a reassuring manner, the move to the podium where Thomas left his notes and look through the book.  "all rise"  Kwame is still at the podium, gesturing with a pointed finger, his smiles from earlier this morning are gone.

They break and Kwame goes back to his seat as the Judge calls for everyone to be seated.

Thomas moves on to Jon Rutherford and his contributions.  ASks if Miller is aware that Rutherford ever got a casino deal.  Miller says he's not aware.  Thomas asks he didn't get a casino?  MIller says he didn't.

Thomas asks if even Coleman Young wanted CAsinos in Detroit.  Miller says right.

Thomas says even ARcher said there'd be no Casinos when he came into office.  Miller says yes.  Thomas asks if he remembers when the Window casino went up.. Yes.  Thomas asks if he remembers the giant sucking sound of taxpayer money going to Windsor.  Miller says he doesn't remember that.

Thomas says that changed.  Miller says that's right, Archer was forced to reconsider.  Miller says they were going to be built on the riverfront.  Thomas says this was the geographical area, not the whole riverfront but a part.  Miller says yes.

12:09

Miller is staying real cool.  He's giving the impression that he's earnestly trying to understand Jim Thomas' questions, as are we all, and that he's trying to answer them.  Even the judge admonished Thomas for commenting on how long it was taking Miller to figure out what he was being asked.  Miller certainly doesn' seem ruffled but Thomas sure seems fazed by Miller's calm.

This whole line of testimony has just reinforced the government's issue that the Civic Fund was not allowed to do candidate specific campaigning and in the one statement Miller offered on his own, without prompting, he said the polling paid for by the fund was for the campaign.

12:06

Thomas asks if he traveled around the state relating legislative issues, to introduce Kwame throughout the state.  Yes.  Thomas asks is the result of that is he was going to try to be Lt. Governor for Granholm.  Yes.

Miller says yes kwame's focus changed about Lt. Governor and he decided to run for Mayor.  Thomas asks if in order to that he had to get information.  That the civic fund had purposes independent of his run for mayor.  Thomas says but there may have been overlap.  Miller asks him to repeat the question.

Thomas says there would have been overlap in the polling between what the fund needed and kwame's run for Mayor.  Miller says the polling was for the purpose of running for Mayor. 

Thomas says but this could be irrespective of the run for Mayor.  Miller says he'd have to think about it.

Judge Edmunds tell Thomas it's inappropriate for him to comment on how long it takes Miller to answer.

Thomas says can you identify issues important as it relates to the civic fund.  Miller says yes.

Judge Edmunds call for a break.

11:59
Chutkow objected that Thomas' questions were already asked and answered.  It sure seems like Thomas is beating a dead horse here.  The articles of the civic Fund don't trump the law.  All Miller's answers were the same.  The law says you can't you charitable funds for candidate specific activity.

They're back now, let's see if Thomas has something up his sleeve.  He asks if the restated articles were filed in July 2001.

Miller says yes.

Thomas shows the Lake, Snell invoice from July of 2001 about the same time.  Miller agrees it was a few weeks later.  A few weeks apart.


Thomas says you see it's July 17th.  Miller says yes.  Thomas asks him if he sees the billing for $18,000. Is it for focus groups, a portion of the total bill.  Miller says he understand.  Thomas asks if he remembers it.  Miller says not exactly.

A Juror asks a question.  Judge Edmunds says the can't ask substantive questions about the evidence.  Thomas Quips he'll pretend  he didn't hear the question.  Wish I had but it was off mic.

Thomas shows the check with says focus groups.  asks if it was tor the hole amount.  Thomas asks why it was 14,000, you were aware why the articles were refilled.  Correct.

Chutkow objects. Judge Edmunds says he can ask if it was after the articles were restated.  Miler says he sees it.

Thomas asks isn't it true this is an allocation for whatever was appropriate after the articles were changed.  Miller says I don't know.

Thomas says you don know the restated articles allow for non candidate specific work to be done.  Chutkow objects, misleading.  Judge Edmunds sustains.

Thomas says focus groups were important for kwame to talk to the issues as head of the civic fund... odd, kwame was off the fund by this time as Thomas took great pains to point out.  Miller agrees that knowing the issues would be important when  Kwame was speaking publicly about the fund.

11:47

Miller says but you just told me the law was that this fund couldn't be involved in candidate specific issues.

Thomas says yes but the law is the law. Miller says right. Thomas says but you signed this you were involved.  Miller says but this still doesn't say candidate specific.  Thomas says you're getting to where I'm going to go in about ten minutes.

Sidebar.

11:46

Thomas asks if Miller remembers singing checks after Kwame's name was taken off the board of directors of the Civic Fund.  Doesn't recall.

Tomas asks if Bob Berg worked on the Civic Fund when the  Rutherford check hit the news. Are you hesitating.  Miller says yes because he doesn't know if Bob Berg was working for the Civic fund or if he was dealing with a campaign issue.

Thomas asks if Bob Berg could have been wearing two hats. He could have been working for the Civic Fund.  Miller says he just doesn' agree.

Thomas asks if it was related to the fund.  Miller says yes.

Thomas says you can't separate and say he wasn't working for the civic fund.  Miller says he doesn' remember.  Miller says the reason he can't is because he doesn't know if he had a written contract with the fund, you'd have to show me documentation to show me which he was working for.

BAsicly what Miller just said was that he doesn't know who was paying Berg.

Thomas is moving to a document,back to the artless and the purpose of the fund.

Thomas says do you see the part about charitable purposes, you testified that this was a restriction put on the fund.

Miller says his understanding was it couldn't be used for candid ace specific.

Thomas says this goes to your direct testimony, that it can't be used for a specific candidate for political office.  yes.

do you remember that the articles were restated.  Miller says he recalls that.  Thomas puts up the restated articles and says these were signed by the Vice chairman of the civil fund.  Miller says not necessarily.

Tomas shows Miller his signature.  Miller agrees he signed it.  Thomas says we heard about the fund being used for polling and do you remember what changes were made to the fund to make this poling appropriate.  Miller says it's hazy.

Thomas asks if he remembers the changes to make it appropriate for the fund to engage in political activity.

Thomas is losing this battle.

The restatement says the fund will not get involved in campaigning for any one political candidate.  Thomas says we can see it was changed and your signature is on it.  Miller says yes.  Thomas says it was changed because kwame was not going to run for Mayor.  Miller says he doesn' recall that.

11:32

Thomas says you weren't involved when the civic fund was formed.  Miller says that's not what I said, I said I wasn't involved in the incorporation.

Thomas shows him his signature on the articles of incorporation, asks if as early as June 1 1999 he was involved in the fund.  Miller says yes.

Thomas say you were shown this exhibit and you indicated that there were activities, examples, and it was your impression that the civic fund was prohibited in engaging in political activities.  Miller says in candidate specific activities, yes.

Thomas reads 501c-3 can't be involved in candidate specific activities but the law does not prohibit getting engaged in political activity.

Chutkow objects and says this requires a legal conclusion.

Edmunds jumps in.  Miller says his understanding was it couldn't be used for political purposes as long as it wasn't specific.

Miller asks what do you mean by political purposes.  Thomas says get out the vote.  Miller say yes.

Thomas says I'll give you an example.  Manny Maroun was involved in getting a bridge built, did you see those ads.  Miller says now. remember, he doesn' live in Detroit any more, he was spared that onslaught.

Thomas says anti Stabenow ads.  ASks if it doesn' say who to vote for?  Miller says if it doesn't  say who to vote for he'd agree.

Thomas asks if he was aware that the articles were changed at any time after the initial formation.  Miller says it could have been he doesn't recall.

11:22

Thomas asks if his friend, a lawyer named William Phillips was involved.  Miller says yes.

Thomas asks if he knows when the Civic Fund was set up.  Miller says he doesn't know exactly when.

Thomas makes him read the tax exempt status application.   Miller says without being able to see it, it looks like it. 

Thomas asks if this is a letter to the IRS signed by Beatty.  Yes.

And is it dated.  Yes.

Do you see the application for an exemption.  Yes.

asks if it's signed...screen scrolling... by kwame on June 1 1999.  Yes.

Thomas asks if he can tell what a 501c-3 is.  Miler says he give it his best shot.  Says they can raise money and donate money to charitable causes.

Thomas asks if he sees community activities listed and are they social welfare.  Yes.

Thomas asks if making people aware of political issues is important.  yes.

Thomas says an informed public... Yes.

Thomas asks if Detroit was suffering from an image problem.  Miller says maybe it was.  Thomas says granting it was then wasn't making better good for social welfare.  Yes.

11:15

Thomas shows him a document with the dates, asks if he was aware at the time that these grants were being requested.  Miller says no.  Thomas asks if he was aware of the grants in 2000.  SAys he couldn't have known what they were for.  Miller says nope.

Thomas says we're talking about 2000, and whether Carlita was going to be a subcontractor.  WAs that why you hesitated on direct because you didn't know.  Miller says he did' T hesitate.  Chutkow interjects and he says he never asked miller that question.

Thomas asks if he remembers being asked about Sg-11 and do you remember June 30 2000.  Miller says nope.  Thomas says if you don't remember that then you weren't working for Kwame at the time.  Miller says if that's what you're asking then no I wasn't working for him at that time.

Thomas asks if he was later asked to assist a constituent.  yes.  The letters had no complaint with Carlita being a subcontractor and subcontractors can be paid.  Miller says subcontractors can get paid.

Judge Edmunds tell Thomas his question is over broad.

Thomas says CArlita's name came up and Kwame didn't understand why.  Yes.  Politicians are protective of their family's.  Yes.  You had an incident when your wife was in the news paper... Objection, sustained..

Thomas asks if Kwame asked why his wife was mentioned.  Miler say yes.

Thomas move on to the Civic Fund.  You were involved.  Yes.

Were you involved in 1999.  Miller says I don't think at that time.

Thomas asks if friends and family were involved.  Miller says yes and others.

11:09

Thomas says we just went through a bunch of grants.  You acknowledged some of them, for millions of dollars.  Miller says yes.

Thomas says he wasn't to talk about state government, asks what a quadrant meeting is.  Miller says it's a meeting between the Senate leadership, house leadership, and the governor's office. 

Thomas asks if you could have meetings talking about the budget.  Yes.
Thomas asks if each person at the meetings comes with what their constituents would like.  Yes.

Thomas asks if he was not there during the quadrant meetings for those budget meetings.  Miller says what you asked me was about when the grants first came up.

Thomas says I want to put together a timeline, I want to know if you were at these quadrant meetings.  Miller says yes.

Thomas asks if these folks are also advocating for other districts as well.  Miller says yes and he attended some of those meetings.

Tomas asks if Mary Lennoye was there.  (that's the Engler's budget director)   Miller says yes, she took the suggestions back tot he Governor.

Thomas asks if the grant were liberally granted.  Miller says he doesn't really know.

Thomas asks if he testified that Kwame sponsored these grants.  Miller says he didn't, he just said he was aware of the grants.

Thomas asks if Kwame was concerned about these grants.  Yes.

Thomas asks if there were many other grants at this time.  Miller says no, separate times. 

Judge Edmunds asks if we could have a time frame here to help sort this out a little bit.

Thomas says as you sit here today are you aware of the time frame of the grants.  Miller says their submittal?  Thomas says their award.  Miller says he doesn' remember.

Thomas asks if he can show him a document to refresh his recollection. Miller says "sure" in the perkiest tone of voice he's used so far.

10:55

"all rise"  court is in session.  Thomas is back at the podium.

10:29

Thomas asks if he can approach the witness.  Judge Edmunds says what for.  Thomas says to refresh his recollection. Judge Edmunds says this is a collateral topic, if he says he doesn' remember he doesn' remember.

Sidebar!

And After the sidebar the morning break.  Back in 20 minutes.

10:27

Thomas asks if Miller traveled that state with Kwame as he campaign to become the democratic minority leader in the house.  Yes.

Asks if he went to the U. P.  Yes.  He was owed in the U. P.  Yes.  asks if they put in a lot of miles.  yes.

Asks if he went to the Gladwin and Iosco county PIg roast. Miller says he doesn't think he went to that but it was a big deal.  They also went to a dog sled race.

Thomas asks if he was supporting Mr. Kilpatrick.  Yes.  Thomas turns to the state arts grant now.

Thomas asks about Miller's testimony about the grant documentation.  yes.

Thomas asks what his job was then.  Miller says he was deputy chief of staff.  Thomas asks if there were budget issues that needed to be solved.  Miller says that was separate.

Chutkow objects, says he didn't testify about this.  Judge Edmunds allows the question.

Thomas asks if politics is like sausage making.  Miller say okay.  Thomas says I get an okay but that's not a yes.

ASks he Miller was aware of the fact that meetings among leadership to figure out what Governor Engler needed to get his budget passed.  Miller says he wasn't there then.

Thomas asks if Kwame supported constituents for these grants.  Thomas asks if these were the only two grants Kilpatrick had advocated for. did he advocate for others.  Yes.  Miller is thinking now about others, says he doesn't remember, maybe if he could hear them...

Tomas reads Arab American, Michigan Opera Theater... Miller asks in the same time period, says yes he remembers.  Thomas continues reading the list.  Miller says are you asking if he voted for these or did he advocate for these.  Thomas read more names.  Miller say he recalls all these.

Thomas read Motor City Organ Society.  No.  Darts block club.  No.  City of Inkster.  No.

Canton. No.

Bunch of yesses, bunch of no's.

10:15

Thomas asks if Conflict resolution was important and did he know if CArlita was working at Sherrard SChool. Miller says Sherrard or Sherrill.  Thomas says Sherrill was the 3-d school.  Miller says he didn't know anything about the specific schools just about the state grants.

Thomas asks if she was concerned about children in the school, formed a basketball team for the girls.  Yes.  THoams says all that was a Sherrill.  Miller says as far as he can remember.  THomas says it was all awhile ago and he'll talk about Miller's memory later.

Thomas asks if Miller and Beatty were involved the Kwame's race for state house.  It was an interesting thing for you.  Yes.  Was Beatty a hard worker.  Yes.  Beatty was very knowledgeable about politics and campaigning.  Miller says maybe not but not back then.

Miller says he thought he was doing something important, and believed fn Kwame's message.

10:09

Thomas is up, says you testified about your history with Kilpatrick, says he doesn't want to go over it all again, and starts right in by going through it all again.

Asks if he was friends with BEatty, and was there an incident about the broken window.  Isn't the congresswoman still asking you to replace that broken window.  Miller says he doesn't know.  Thomas is trying to bring back a fond childhood memory here but Miller isn't biting.

Thomas asks if Kwame went to support Miller when he was playing a basketball game even though he was playing against Kwame's college.  Yes.

Thomas asks if he was happier working for Mrs. Kilpatrick than teaching kids and working as a massage therapist?  Miller says he was happy working no matter what it was.

Miller says there were two campaigns going on at the same time.  He was working on kwame's campaign.

Thomas asks if he got his job with the congresswoman because he supported her.  Miller says maybe.

Thomas asks if he was happy working in D.C.  Miller say he enjoyed it.

Thomas says it was safest to say you were employed by and working with the Kilpatrick's for years.

Thomas says wasn't that a better job.  Miller says yes it was a better job but you asked me about being happy, I'm happy working and whatever job it is.  Good point Derrick, picky distinction, but a good point.

Thomas asks if he stood up in Kwame's wedding.  No, he stood up in mine.  Thomas asks if he got to know CArlita.  Yes.

ASks if he got to know her as someone who had experience in conflict resolution, bright and intelligent, motivated.  Yes.

10:02

Shea asks if Karl Kado and Jon Rutherford were good clients but they didn't get contracts renewed or get their casinos built.

Shea says regardless that Kado was Bernard's clients they kicked Kado out.  Yes.  Shea says they had to take their lumps because they didn't achieve what needed to be done for the city.  Miller says yes.


Miller is so low key, so matter of fact, so calm, he has absolutely no emotion in his voice.  He hasn't volunteered a thing, just answers yes or no unless prompted.

Shea asks if Miller had to field complaints.  Yes.  asks if clients that complained might get some consideration for having complained.  Miller says not necessarily.  Shea says but it's possible.  Miller says anything is possible.

Shea asks about referees in ball games that make bad calls and don't people complain and doesn't that happen in business as well.  Miller says, in his monotone voice, Yes.

And that's it for Shea.

9:52

Miller says he gave Kwame 10 grand in the bathroom and Kwame said, "cool."  That's it for Chutkow.  John Shea is up now on behalf of Bernard Kilpatrick.

Asks if he testified he grew up with Kwame, knew Bernard, that he was involved in local politics, had been a Wayne county commission, was McNamara's chief of staff, that Bernard worked for McNamara when Kwame divided to run for office.  Yes.

She says he's assuming Miller knows Bernard was well connected in political circles. Yes.  Assisted CArolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick get elected to Congress. yes.  You worked for CArolyn.  Yes.

Shea asks if the family was close.  Yes.

Asks if he'd be surprised if Bernard had not been involved.  Yes.

Okay, I'm going to wait for Shea to make some sort of point here.....

Shea asks if smart politicians know that they don't know everything there is to know.  Miller says yes.  I'm going out for coffee now.

Shea asks if Bernard assisted with the non-profits.  Miller says yes.  From the testimony we've heard over the last 50 days it's clear that Bernard "assisted" with any operation that involved cash.

Drinking coffee now.

Shea says not to put too fine a point on it he was a Dad. Miller says yes.

Chutkow is sitting at the table looking at Shea with a puzzled look on his face.  Bernard is sitting in his chair, leaning back, kneading his hands together under his chin.  He's looking at the Shea then glancing at Miller.

Kwame if wiping his forehead. Bobby is thumbing through papers and taking to his attorney Gerald Evelyn.

Shea is running through all the things that consultants do and asking if they get paid for what they do.  Miller says yes.

Shea asks if Conrad Mallot acted as a consultant.  Yes.

Jim Stapelton was a consultant.  Yes.

He was politically active.  Yes.  Had good relationships with City Government.  Yes.

Curtis Hertell was a consultant before becoming port authority chair.  ASks if he met with HErtall frequently.  Miller says depends on what you mean by frequently but yes he'd take Hertell's call.

9:37

Miller says the project ran into problems and the screens were installed but them taken down.  Says business owners were complaining, there were zoning problems, ((and this is all BS because as we uncovered the company that sold the screens told us they didn't get paid.Yeah, those problems existed, but payment was the key.  Park also plead guilty to federal charges by the way.))

Chutkow asks if the project was a failure.  Miller says not totally, some of the cameras are still in use.

Chutkow asks about Asian Village.  Miller says GM gave them a lot of money but they needed a lot more.  Miller says he put in a good word with the pension board trustees, Like Beasely the city treasurer.

Thomas objects, says the Mayor didn't appoint Beasely to the pension board.  Chutkow clarifies that Kwame appointed Beasely to be treasurer and the treasurer automatically gets a seat on the board.

Miller now says Park gave him money, $10,000.   Miller says taking this money was not appropriate.

Chutkow asks about his company Citivest.  Miller says it was set up to  help companies raise money.

Miller says Park also gave Miller $10,000 for Kwame.  Miller says Kwame asked him if he could get money from the ASian Village guys.  Says he picked it up at ASian Village, in hundreds, in a envelope, and he later transferred it to Mr. Kilpatrick.  Miller says they made the hand off in one of the ASian Village bathrooms.

9:34

Miller says he was Chief Info officer at the time and he was also in charge of getting grants from homeland security.

Miller says the idea was to link the city with the statewide emergency system, and put screens downtown.  Show ads too, provide revenue for the city.  Also include video cameras.

We did a story about this right after the ASian Village story broke, it's also how we found out Miller was being investigated by the FBI.  It was a huge fiasco, they took the money from Homeland Security, bought a bunch of screens that were actually put up downtown, then didn't pay the company that sold the screens.  THat company reposed them!  Took them down and took them back.  Total waste of tax payer dollars and Park and crew pocketed a ton of money.

9:24

Miller says he didn't report the income until after he found out the government was investigating him.  Says he filed an amended return after he found out.  Says he agreed to work with the IRS and agreed to pay his back taxes and plead guilty to tax evasion.

Chutkow asks about Andrew Park now, ASian village, and SCAN.

Miller says ASian village was a restaurant banquet facility next to the REn Cen.  Says he found out about it though the Riverfront Conservancy, says it was an attempt to revitalize the downtown area.  Says Park and his partners were having trouble finalizing the operation.

 Miller say Dominick Pangborn was the partner.  Miller says they told him about Digital Ten, a company that had a contract with the Michigan Dept of transportation for video screens at the secretary of state to announce public messages and show commercials while people were standing in line.  (Captive audience?)

9:17

Miller says Shumake was seeking pension board money to make the purchase and that Miller would get a pay-off for helping with the deal.

Miller says he put in a good word for Shumake with members of the pension board to smooth the way.

Chutkow asks about compensation.  Miller says he talked to John Johnson, corporate council for the city, about whether he was allowed to enter into the deal.  Says Johnson told him yes he could.

Miller says the property deal went through after he left the city and he got more than $500,000.  Miller says he put the money in his company account, ATrium Financial.  Miller says he put it in this account so pension board members wouldn't find out he was involved and cause blowback on the Mayor.

Miller says neither he not Shumake told the pension board about his involvement in the deal.  This was in 2007 and 2008.

9:12

Chutkow is explaining there was a transcription error in a text message.  In fact, a reply attributed to Bobby was actually the Mayor's response.

Chutkow now has a brief conversation with Jim THomas, Kwame's attorney, then exchanges a few words with Mike Bullotta on the prosecution team before turning to ask Miller the first question.

Chutkow asks about Inheritance Capital, run by Robert Shumake.  Shumake is the guy that Fox 2's Rob Wolchek put in the Hall of Shame after people complained he took their money to help them avoid foreclosure but they lost their homes anyway.  What a bunch, eh?

Chutkow asks if Miller worked on the Riverfront Conservancy.  Miller says yes.

Miller explains that he introduced Shumake to a Mr. Cohen because there was a opportunity for Shumake in a GM property sale.  Miller says Shumake was going to put together an asset proposal, a financial package, so he'd buy the from Gm and he'd lease them back to help them get the properties off their books.

9:06

"All rise" court is in session.  Mark Chutkow is at the podium in the center of the room for the prosecution.  Derrick Miller is waiting to take his seat.

And the jury is in.

9:00

It's a jovial bunch in the court room this morning.  Kwame, Bobby, and Bernard Kilpatrick at laughing and joking around behind the defense table.  Big smiles, chucks on the shoulder, laughter. It's like they're at a party, or about to sit down and watch a football game.  You wouldn't get the impression that they're worried that the testimony we're about to hear today could send them to prison for 20 years.

8:38

Good Morning from the Theodore J. Levin Federal Courthouse in down town Detroit on Day 50 of the Kilpatrick Inc. Public Corruption Trial.

High School buddy Derrick Miller is back on the witness stand again this morning and Kwame is back in trouble with his parole officer and meeting with him this afternoon.  Some things just don't change.

Kwame is a big topic downtown and a big target.  As I was handing over my car keys to the gentlemen at the parking lot across from the court house this morning, and exchanging always pleasant greetings, Owen joked, "I met Kwame on the street the other day and asked him what was the best nation in the world?"  Owen grinned as he told me hizzoner's reply,"Do-nation."

We laughed.  In light of the "Donation" to Kwame's cause by Pastor Corey Brooks of Chicago, it makes me wonder how many other donations Kwame forgot to tell his Parole Officer about.  I'm sure that question will be asked by someone with a lot more clout than me... very soon.

When we left off on Tuesday the former Mayor's former pal Derrick Miller was  testifying. Miller said two things that really stuck out, first that he personally handed Kwame bribe money he had collected from a contractor, and second that Bobby Ferguson was such a pain in the rear that even Kwame's sister was getting burned. 

The last thing I wrote on the blog was,"Wow, even kwame's sister was complaining about Bobby.  Miller says she was worried that her clients wouldn't have a chance, and she wouldn't get paid, if Bobby got involved."

We'll see if the defense can turn some straw into gold today when they get their chance to grill Miller.


Ken Martinek is Senior Producer-Investigations for Fox 2 News.  You can contact him at ken.martinek@foxtv.com

 
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