Live Blog: Kwame Kilpatrick Trial Day 62 - New York News

Live Blog: Kwame Kilpatrick Trial Day 62

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DETROIT -

What a rollicking morning. The defense team chewed through Agent Shuck's testimony like wood chipper would chew through a ficus plant. And the Honorable Nancy Edmunds let justice take it's course. Can't say I blame the defense for going after her for "forgetting" on the one hand, then all of a sudden "remembering" when it was a prosecutor asking her questions.

But the government bounced back big time with a barrage of text messages clearly outlining collusion.

M.L. Elrick will have the high and low-lights tonight on Fox 2 news. And I can't wait to read his unique take on MyFoxDetroit later tonight.

1:03

Shea introduces a document into evidence. Says this is the schedule for the mayor the week of January 28 2002. Says page one shows us his activities, goes through he week, asks if there are more activities, and on Saturday Feb 1 he's at the super bowl. Shea says it confirms that the Super bowl was that weekend and the Mayor attended it. Yes Shea says this was to gather info for the bowl Detroit was going to host. Beeckman says it sounds logical.

Shea asks if other government agencies would send people. True. Shea asks if sometimes people would go who were not government employees. Sure.

And Judge Edmunds says we're done for the day... we'll be back Thursday. Then asks to see council at sidebar.

12:58

Beeckman reads more texts, between Bobby and Kwame. Kwame is talking about Bobby sounding bothered. Chutkow has no more questions.

John Shea is up now for Bernard Kilpatrick. Asks about Kwame flying down to a meeting in Florida. Asks about staying away from "that little guy." Asks if Bernard has no clue who Kwame is talking about. Beeckman says that's right.

Shea asks about the Chicago reference, asks if he knows Bernard had a client in Chicago. Beeckman says yes.

Shea asks about the part where they talk about Ferris State. Asks if it's due north of Grand Rapids like flint is due north of Ann Arbor. Beeckman says Ferris is about an hour drive north, he's not so sure about Flint an Ann arbor.

Shea asks if he got lost of calls on tape. Yes,

Shea asks about Aug 7 2007 between Bernard and Bobby, says they're talking about a Chene park event and that Bernard wants to borrow money. Beeckman says I don't know about borrow but he's asking for money. Shea says Bobby is not expecting the call. True. Not a scheduled encounter, nothing where Bobby agrees to give him money. Correct.

Shea says Bernard tells him just in case. Beeckman says yes.

Shea says there's no evidence Bernard got he money. No.

All this was evident in the tape. What you don't hear is the tone in which Bernard asks for the money, he's not shy, he doesn't appear to be asking for a favor. His tone is that of someone who does this all the time and expects to be accommodated.

12:46

Beeckman read more texts talking about Bobby handling Darci well, kicking the shit out of her, and Beatty saying she thinks the Detroit News Reporter went away, she hasn't heard a peep. Beeckman then reads that Kwame is going to have his media guy start snooping around.

Chutkow now puts up a message talking about Crain's reporter asking if FEI gave sash contributions to Kwame's campaign. Bobby tells Kwame he said no. Beeckman says this refers to Ferguson giving money to his employees and relatives to contribute to the campaign fund.

Chutkow asks if the checks in evidence were handed out at the time Bobby told the Crain's reporter he was just doing grass roots fundraiser. Yes.

Next text:

Bobby: I've got my passport, let's get the fuck out of the country.

Kwame: Cool.

Bobby: black man its done.... cash'

Beeckman says they're talking about campaign contributions.

Now they're looking at texts talking about buying super bowl tickets that Kwame wants Bobby to buy.

Bobby tells him the safe is in the closet, gives him the code and tells him he can get the money.

Chutkow puts up a text between Beatty and Bobby.

Same day as previous text.

Beatty: do you want to go with Mayor to Jerome Bettis cook out.

Bobby: yes

Beatty says: Now, bring the loot...."

Beeckman reads more texts talking about Bobby bringing money to Kwame.

Kwame is just sitting back and laughing, like he can't believe he's hearing , Bobby is stone faced.

12:45

This barrage of texts just bring a barrage of words to mind; conspiring, colluding, planning, scheming. The intent of the prosecution is clear, leave the jury with the final thought of criminal conspiracy. The shear arrogance of the messages, the confidence of the those sending them, is outrageous.

Judge Edmunds steps up the bench, tells the lawyers they can't stay past 1:00pm today and that Rataj will have a lot or cross. Looks like the prosecution will not be able to rest today after all.

The jury is in, the Judge tells the Jury we won't be finished but we will get tomorrow off anyway. Beeckman will be the last defense witness so Judge Edmunds says we'll finish up with him Thursday morning before the defense takes over.

Chutkow says he's got another message that goes to the RICO conspiracy chapter.

Beeckman reads Bobby text: Darci Detroit news just call me about DDA. Beeckman says that's the downtown development authority.

Mayor replies don't call her back,

Bobby says damn I already did I never call them back but I knew what she wanted and played dumb but also if you sit on the board you have to recuse yourself.

Kwame you shouldn't have said shit.

Beckons says if you sit on the board you need to recuse yourself from voting on the DDA board and Bobby did recuse himself.

Beeckman reads another march 2004 text

bobby: Darci is asking me if we're friends and do we travel together and do we talk on the phone.

Mayor: don't confirm none of that. I am someone you support. You think I am doing a great job.

Bobby: Hell no, I just told her we are friends she know that.

Kwame: Tell Darci I used to be her friend. If anyone had asked me 3 years ago I would have said she was my friend.

12:17

Judge is taking a 5 minute break

12:09

Chutkow is now barraging the jury with text message after message between Bobby and Kwame, or Bobby and Beatty, or Derrick Miller, tying the texts to contracts, talking about getting Bobby in on the contracts or holding up the contracts, or booting out other contractors. They're also tying the texts to meetings we hear about in previous testimony, like the time Bobby was in having lunch with the Lakeshore guys when they were asking Bobby what he wanted them to do so he'd stop killing their contracts.

Chutkow now plays a message from Kwame saying Hasn't been let. "Will tell you strategy later." They're talking about a housing project.

It's clear from these text messages that Kwame was an active participant in the plotting.

12:02

Chutkow now show texts between Beatty and Kwame. Betty is asking who put all the black folks in this deal. Kwame says he did. When Beatty asks him why not Bobby? Kwame replies that Bobby wanted to "strategically Lose a big bid."

This evidence is as direct as any we've seen showing that Bobby and Kwame were plotting together.

Beeckman says this concerned the construction of the new police department offices, but it didn't get off the ground at the time. It's under construction now.

Chutkow shows next text Jan 26 2004:

bobby: Lanzo is pissed off about me being here about this job, and I mean pissed.

Derrick Miller: they knew all along. They mentioned you to me.

Beeckman says this was at the time the sewer contract was canceled. That's 1361.

Miller: Bullshit I told them it was a management decision, fuck them liars.

Bobby only Lanzo tom is here saying the same thin you are saying and telling them no deal without me, he gotten smart, I am just sitting here listening."

Beeckman says this is when Lakeshore Engineering was meeting with Bobby.

11:54

Chutkow shows more texts where Kwame tells Bobby he's scaring Meah. Bobby replies that Meah should just run the department.

Beeckman is now explaining that Bobby is now going for a school contract. That there's more talk about messing with contracts and permits.

Chutkow shows an expense report from an employee of Alberitchy the construction company, the original, on the Book Cadillac project. It talks about Walt Watkins from Planning and development and George Jackson of economic development. Its an 800 dollar charge at Cobo Hall. Chutkow shows the credit card of Paul Lindley from Alberitchy for a suite at Cobo.

Chutkow shows a text from Bobby to his office assistant; This one talks about a meeting at Chrysler and setting up a meeting at ford, and about setting up hockey tickets from DEGC. Beeckman says George Jackson was the director of DEGC.

Bobby's assistant replies she had the hockey tickets.

Another text from Lisa Nocerini to Tardiff. She's Derrick Miller's assistant, telling him to make sure the suite at the Joe has food the Mayor is attending tonight.

Next text: march 31 2003, Bobby to Kwame, "Book Cadillac CM is trying not to use FEI and get Amado to do the demo George had me be his guest to let them know how close we are." "will need help … white folks being white."

Shutdown shows another text. "What's up, just put shit on white folks now I need your help need time, book."

Kwame: flying gout 6pm.

Bobby:that's bad for me...

Kwame I'll call you in a few minutes.

Next text between Bobby and Kwame

Bobby you wont believe this someone one stole our equipment from book Cadillac we chase him down to fort and tumble, police and channel 4 and 2 are here.... man the news were out here that's what got me."

paraphrasing bobby, says he's famous now just needs to get some money and Kwame replies "let's get you some."

11:38

Chutkow asks where Bernard was renting office space. Beeckman says in Kado's office. Chutkow points out that Kwame referred to the guy from up by Ferris State asks where Rosendall is from.. Thomas objects. Judge sustains.

Chutkow asks how tall Mike Tardiff is. Beeckman says 5 foot 4. Chutkow points out the "little guy." reference.

Shea asks for a sidebar now.

The phone call is all in coded language that the prosecution is trying to decipher for the jury... and they aren't getting any leeway from the defense to leap to any unsubstantiated conclusions.

Chutkow is going to play another call now.

Beeckman says it's from August 7th 2007 between Bobby and Bernard.

Bernard tells Bobby let's just go together to Chene park, they going to have some seats for us. Bernard says the problem is they just want us to go together. Changes the subject and Says I'm going to get out of here on Sunday... if this thing is going to happen I may need 2 grand … so just have a couple in your back pocket just in case.

Chutkow asks Beeckman where they were going. Says Orlando.

A juror just asked to hear the call again.

Chutkow plays it then moves on to another call from march 5 2008. Chutkow puts up the quote where Bernard says he's going to blow up the Synagro deal.

Beeckman says it the conversation between rosendall and Bernard. Reads the part where Bernard says he could have him... stop it for a year, stop it for two years. Beeckman says Amru Meah was head of Building and Safety, says he saw a text message asking Meah to interfere.

Chutkow publishes the message

Bobby: Club rain the white boy thinks he is slick don't have any real money FEI did 20,000 job and he won't pay is it alright if BLDS safety fuck's with his permit?

Kwame replies will call later.

Beeckman says they're referring to Matthew Flynn, who wanted to open a strip club called club rain, says bobby did some work for him, on the building.

Chutkow asks about building and safety fucking with his permit.

Beeckman says he has no personal knowledge about what happened to the permit.

Chutkow show another message:

bobby: what' up black you see the business second today him Jenkins front page about the casino might get kicked off, contributions.

Beeckman says Jenkins owns a construction company and did work on the book Cadillac.

Beeckman says the news article about Jenkins contributions to the Mayor of Southfield which jeopardized his casino vender license.

Next text:

bobby: FYI casino contractor are spinning Meah and me, Larry Brinker, Paul Jenkins.

Kwame: hey need to find a way.

Bobby that and you that but then mf think that they don't need me or the Meah for permits...

Beeckman says that's Mead with Building and Safety. And Bobby got work from Meah but didn't have any formal role in issuing permits.

11:16

Chutkow is up now and Agent Beeckman is back in the stand. Chutkow says he's going to play a call, and enter the transcript.... Rataj and Thomas jump up. Judge Edmunds laughs and says you're like a jack-in-the-box today... says come on up! Another sidebar. Judge Edmunds usually has no patience for interruptions but in this case it's clear, she thinks the defense lawyers have a strong argument. I get the impression that she like a good Donny brook when the situation calls for it.

Chutkow is back at the podium. Beeckman says it's a warning from Bernard to Kwame. Shea jumps up now, says a synopsis is the time, the date... Judge Edmunds sustains his objection.

Chutkow plays the call. Bernard asks Kwame where he's going. Kwame says Orlando. Bernard asks him when he'll be back. Monday. Bernard says "this guy" needs to talk to you. Kwame says this guy has some news for you too about the little guy. Bernard asks the little guy? Kwame says the little white guy, your favorite little white guy. Bernard says I have no idea. That guy that keeps seeing this guy From Chi?Kwame says he'll call you back.

Chutkow asks Beeckman asks if he remembers money coming Mark Cunningham from Chicago. Thomas objects, over ruled.

Shutdown asked him about the par that says you got to stay away from that Lillie guy.

Beeckman says Cunningham got stung, the Philadelphia enquirer publicized it.

Says Bernard and Akuna Olumba talked about it in a previous conversation.

Chutkow asks about the part where Bernard says you mean the Arab, asks Beeckman what nationality is Karl Kado. Thomas objects. Judge Edmunds call for a side bar.

11:03

Blackwell moves on and asks Shuck what percentage of the checks were endorsed by either Bobby, his wife, or FEI. Shuck says 75%.

Rataj gets another turn. Tells her you testified that Bobby only endorsed 3 checks. Says you don't know who endorsed the checks listed as endorsed by FEI. Shuck says the employee endorsed checks only totaled 600,000. Rataj is steaming, says you don't have that on your chart do you. You can't tell the jury with any certainty, can you? Shuck says no. She done, well done, after that grilling by Rataj. Shuck steps down.

Blackwell now enters a document, it's a stipulation and order listing all the stipulations agreed to by the defense team and the prosecutors. Judge Edmunds tells the jury the stipulations only refer to the information in each paragraph and do not constitute, as Jim Thomas pointed out, that anyone is admitting to any crime or wrong doing.

This was all boiler plate stuff, like that the city got more than $10,000 in federal funds for all the years in which the charges have been leveled, that the Detroit Economic Growth Corporation, and others did business in the city of Detroit.

10:53

Court is back in session. Jennifer Blackwell is asking Shuck if she correlated any of the checks with expenditures. Rataj objects says she already testified she didn't know. Judge Edmunds says she testified all she was looking for was cash so she tells Blackwell she can proceed accordingly.

Blackwell asks if Shuck looked at all the checks. Asks if she maybe can't recall today. Rataj objects again. Judge Edmunds tells him she will certainly let him fully cross examine this line of questioning.

Blackwell asks another question and Shuck cites a rule number and says she may not be able to answer that.

Blackwell asks for a sidebar.

Sidebar is over. Blackwell asks if she can admit a piece of evidence. Judge Edmunds tells her she need to lay a foundation. Thomas and Rataj are both out of there seats.

Judge Edmunds tell Blackwell she need to lay the foundation. Rataj asks if he can ask Shuck a question, Judge says go ahead.

Rataj asks her how many checks she looked at. Thousands. You looked at checks that didn't end up on your chart. You can't tell us how many. No, I don't know how many I looked at.

Rataj says I asked you, do you remember the names of venders. Isn't it true you testified that you could not recall the names of the venders. I asked you and the answer was no. All of a sudden after a 20 minute break you're going to tell us that now you can remember this one check.

Blackwell objects, but the Judge is siding with Rataj on this one. Calls the attorneys up for a sidebar. And she sustains the objections. The checks will no be admitted.

10:15

Judge Edmunds tells the jury she's waiting for an exhibit to be delivered so we'll take our 20 minute break now.

10:14

Rataj is running through cashier's checks now. Says it's a check made out to Florida A&M University. Next check is make out to Lane College. Shuck says she has no idea where Bobby's daughters were going to school. I'm not sure if the cash used to pay for these checks came from a business or personal account. Odd though, that Bobby got cashier's checks to pay for college. The University my kid attended took even my personal checks and I didn't have two safes stuffed with cash and CD's totaling more than a million dollars.

Shuck says she just counted these checks to make sure they didn't get deposited into any other account.

Rataj says you're not here to suggest Mr. Ferguson had 50 personal bank accounts are you ma'am? Shuck says she doesn't know how many personal accounts Bobby had. Rataj tells the Judge he has no further questions

10:05

Rataj introduces a series of checks into evidence and hands them to Shuck. Puts a highlighted chart on the screen listing the checks as payroll checks from payroll checks from Xcel to Bobby. Shuck says she can't tell if it's a payroll check.

Rataj says let's look at the next check. Asks if she'd agree with her that the memo sections says "parts." At least according to that check in your chart Mr. Ferguson cashed a check for parts. Shuck says it's a check made payable to Bobby Ferguson for $12,000 but she can't read the memo line. Rataj asks about the next check, does it say...

Blackwell objects, says this chart is not in evidence. Judge Edmunds says the original chart does not have these hand written memo's. Rataj says you're exactly right the jury copy will be clean. Says he'll put the checks in evidence for the jury to see. Asks about a check for $21,000 that says "graphics" in the memo line.

Rataj now pus up a copy of the check that says "truck parts" in the memo line. Moves to next check that says "graphics" in the memo line. Now shows a 12,000 check that says "ws 623 8 mile asphalt payment." Judge Edmunds asks who it's paid out to. It's paid out to cash.

(I've done a couple of stories on crooked asphalt pavers, and was told by one supplier that they only ask for "cash" from the deadbeats.)

All these checks Rataj is going through are made out to cash, or to Bobby personally. So it looks like he's taking cash out of his accounts to pay bills. Rataj has shown a whole lot of checks here, but not one receipt. You'd think if his point is that all this cash was for legitimate business purposes he'd at least have a receipt from the asphalt suppliers.

9:49

Rataj runs through the accounts, counts up 6. Shuck studies the chart again.

Shuck asks did he count personal accounts? Rataj says we'll get to those, I just want the jury to understand your chart. Shuck names another account. Rataj says so we're up to 7? Yes.

Shuck says there's also another FEI account. Rataj says so 8? Shuck says and one personal account. Adding up to 9.

Rataj, now, wouldn't you agree with me ma'am there were a total of 5 transactions in the total of $10,500. Asks if he can enter 5 checks into evidence that came out of the personal account.

Rataj says these checks are listed on her chart, 5 checks. Another long pause as Shuck looks at the checks.

Rataj says according to your chart Bobby cashed 5 checks from that account over 6 years. Shuck says yes.

Rataj says he'd like to introduce documents showing these checks were for the kid's college funds.

Says you'll admit this is a college savings plan for Brandi Ferguson. Shuck says there are so many documents. Rataj shows her documents and says this is for Brandi. Yes. This is for Brittany. Yes. Bobby Jr. Yes. These accounts are not listed on your chart. Correct.

Shuck says she looked to make sure these checks weren't deposited into any other account.

Rataj says but we established there were 8 business accounts and one personal account. Correct.

Asks when you were reviewing all the accounts, the corporate accounts, you ran across checks made payable to venders. Were there payroll checks. Shuck says she just looked for checks to cash. Says she doesn't remember who the payees were. Rataj says so what you didn't see any of those checks, you don't remember, the checks, you can't testify to any of the payees. Shuck says correct.

9:36

"all rise" Judge Nancy Edmunds takes the bench. Bobby Ferguson's attorney Mike Rataj is at the podium waiting for the jury before he resumes.

Judge Edmunds greets the jury, reminds Shuck she's still under oath and Rataj begins.

Rataj show the chart she prepared showing cash withdrawals on Bobby's accounts.

Rataj asks if she looked at who endorsed the checks. Yes

Rataj says he did his own analysis, now puts up the total for the cash transactions, asks Shuck if she remembers. Yes.

Rataj asks if out of 83 transactions Bobby endorsed only 3. Shuck says she remembers counting 83 checks.

Rataj now says he wants to ask her about the number of accounts. Asks if she'd like to have the chart in front of her, would it help you. Sure.

Looks at First Independence Bank accounts. Shuck affirms. Rataj asks if there's also a

Comerica account. Yes.

Rataj now asks for a copy of the chart be put on the screen since he just handed Shuck his copy.

Asks if the FI accounts were business accounts. Yes.

Asks if she sees the Comerica corporate account. Yes.

Asks about entry for Johnson Consultants. Yes. Shuck says she can't recall if it's FI or Comerica. Says it's a business account.

Rataj asks about the Xcel account. Asks if there's an A&F Environmental/Johnson account. Yes.

Rataj asks if there are 6 accounts. Shuck says she thinks there were nine. Rataj asks if he missed some, tells Shuck to take here time looking at the chart.

9:23

The attorneys are filing back into the room. Mark Chutkow went straight to where agent Beeckman was sitting and whispered something in his ear. Chutkow then left smiling. 

Agent Shuck from the IRS is standing next to the witness box in the front left corner of the room, as you look from the gallery, waiting to resume being cross examined

9:20

The defendants are gathered at the corner of the "L" shaped defense table, laughing and smiling. It looks like Bernard said something funny. Kwame turned away laughing with his hand over his mouth. Bobby Ferguson looks relaxed, for once his hands are not in constant motion. Bernard is standing with his arms folded across his chest, occasionally smiling or laughing. They are the only ones at the defense table, the prosecutors table is empty. I see a loan print reporter sitting in the gallery, and agent Beeckman is sitting his usual seat, directly behind the prosecutors table in the first row

9:04

The picture is up in the overflow room and the defendants are in the court room. Kwame Kilpatrick is sitting next to his Father Bernard, chatting with attorneys Mike Naughton and Susan Van Dusen. Kwame's attorney Jim Thomas is pulling papers out of his over sized brief case and organizing pages in a binder, occasionally comparing exhibits with prosecutors.

The prosecution team looks relaxed, like they can see the light at the end of a very long tunnel. Bullotta and Doeh are examining papers with Agent Sauer.

And the a clerk waves from the door way to Judge Nancy Edmunds chambers and the attorneys all file to the front of the room and disappear through the door behind the judge's bench.

8:54

Good Morning from downtown Detroit at the Theodore J. Levin Federal Court House. If all goes as planned today the prosecutors will end their presentation.

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

 

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