Messages sought in stripper’s death
An attorney representing the son of a slain stripper known as Strawberry is seeking text messages from 34 people, including Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, key members of his security team and the city’s police chief.
Attorney Norman Yatooma filed a motion Friday in U.S. District Court in Detroit seeking preservation and copies of incoming and outgoing text messages and calls, originating from any Detroit SkyTel messaging device for the 34 people.
Among those listed: Kilpatrick, his bodyguards Mike Martin and Lorenzo Jones, former chief of staff Christine Beatty, former Police Chief Jerry Oliver, Police Chief Ella Bully-Cummings and former Police Lt. Alvin Bowman, who investigated the shooting death of Tamara Greene.
Greene danced at strip clubs under the name Strawberry.
Yatooma is representing Greene’s 14-year-old son, Jonathan Bond, in a federal lawsuit alleging that police and city officials covered up her April 30, 2003, death.
Greene was gunned down at 3:40 a.m. in a car that she was parking at Roselawn and West Outer Drive. The drive-by shooting remains unsolved.
Bowman charged in a lawsuit that city officials transferred him out of the homicide division because he was investigating what happened to Greene, who was rumored to have performed at an alleged Manoogian Mansion party in fall 2002. Bowman left the department citing stress leave.
State Attorney General Mike Cox, whose office investigated the alleged party, dismissed the rumors as an urban legend. Michigan State Police officials also said they found no evidence of wrongdoing, although some officers testified during Bowman’s trial that Cox impeded their investigation by denying them subpoenas.
A Wayne County Circuit Court jury awarded Bowman $200,000 after a trial that ended Oct. 21, 2005.
In his filing Friday, Yatooma also asked for copies of SkyTel contracts with the city dating back to Jan. 1, 2002.
This week, Yatooma subpoenaed the Free Press to produce text messaging records it obtained during an investigation into possible perjury involving Kilpatrick and Beatty. It is opposing the subpoena.
City of Detroit spokesman James Canning could not be reached for comment Friday.
Contact BEN SCHMITT at 313-223-4296 or firstname.lastname@example.org.