Kilpatrick Set To Testify In Death Of Dancer
DETROIT — Former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick and several others have been ordered to appear in court again Monday to testify in connection with the Tamara Greene case.
Kilpatrick arrived at Federal Court around 8 a.m. He is not scheduled to testify until after 10 a.m.
Greene was killed in a drive-by shooting in 2003. It was rumored that she danced at a never-proven party at the Manoogian Mansion that was thrown by then-mayor Kilpatrick in 2002.
Her family has filed a lawsuit against the city claiming Kilpatrick and other high-ranking city officials thwarted the investigation into her death.
The family’s attorney, Norman Yatooma, said the city has repeatedly withheld records in the case and that evidence related to the case has been intentionally destroyed, specifically e-mails sent between officials on city-owned computers.
“There was a requirement under the law for them to keep these e-mails,” Yatooma said. “They should have known that these e-mails were necessary at such time that the attorney general was investigating the party. They should have known that these e-mails were relevant at such time when the chief of police wrote a letter and said keep everything on file. It’s more than just curios.”
A city lawyer has testified that the computer Kilpatrick used in his mayoral office was thrown out in 2008, while a lawyer for Kilpatrick has said the computer was left for his successor, Ken Cockrel Jr.
Yatooma said Kilpatrick, Christine Beatty, former Detroit Police Chief Ella Bully-Cummings and a couple of Kilpatrick’s former bodyguards will be back in court March 7.
“The city appears to have wagered a bet that there’s going to be less of a penalty to pay to destroy the evidence than it would be for them to produce it,” Yatooma said. “That’s why the law says that if you destroy the evidence, you can be held accountable.”
City officials deny any wrongdoing and have asked that the lawsuit be thrown out.
Kilpatrick is in prison for violating probation in a criminal case. He’s also under indictment on federal fraud and tax charges.
Local 4 has learned that ex-chief of staff Christine Beatty could testify by phone or video conference.