Race question leads to tension and shoving in Kilpatrick case - New York News

Question about race leads to tension and shoving in Kilpatrick case

Posted: Updated:
Tense moments outside of court between Defense Attorney Mike Rataj and Fox 2 Reporter M.L. Elrick.   (Photo WJBK) Tense moments outside of court between Defense Attorney Mike Rataj and Fox 2 Reporter M.L. Elrick. (Photo WJBK)
DETROIT (WJBK) -

On the final day the defense made its closing argument in the Federal Corruption Trial involving former Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, his father Bernard Kilpatrick and contractor Bobby Ferguson, tensions were high outside the courthouse.

Inside defense attorney Gerald Evelyn just completed telling jurors that prosecutors are trying to turn relationships into crimes.
 
Evelyn quoted Martin Luther King Jr. and held the book "Profiles in Courage" as he made an emotional final argument to jurors on behalf of Bobby Ferguson.

Evelyn says Ferguson "earned every dime" he received through excavation and demolition work. He says it makes no sense that Kwame Kilpatrick had enough power to force large successful companies to take Ferguson on as a subcontractor.

After court was adjourned, Fox 2's M.L. Elrick asked defense attorney Mike Rataj to clarify what he meant by saying the government has waged a 5 to 7 year campaign against his clients and about what was said during closing arguments, even throughout the trial.

Elrick: "Is the government racist, is that what you're saying?"

Rataj: "Did I say anything about that?"  "Are you ignorant?"  "You're an ignorant man."

Elrick as Rataj walks away: "C'mon Mike answer the question... be a man."

Rataj comes toward Elrick and yells:"Be a man?"

Rataj then shoves Elrick and the two exchange strong words.  At one point it looked like they may come to blows, but in the end Rataj walked away and Elrick went to work on his report for Fox 2 News.

Play the video to see the event as it was captured on camera during Elrick's report on Fox 2 News at 5pm.

Elrick tells Fox 2's Huel Perkins that he likes Mike Rataj, but it's a reporter's job to ask questions.

The trial continues on Friday when prosecutors will make their last argument  before the case goes to the jury.

Ferguson, Kilpatrick and Kilpatrick's father, Bernard, are charged with conspiring to enrich themselves by rigging contracts and extorting businesses that wanted city business.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report)

 

  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • NJ brush fire forces evacuations

    NJ brush fire forces evacuations

    Thursday, April 24 2014 1:56 PM EDT2014-04-24 17:56:44 GMT
    A New Jersey school and several homes were evacuated Thursday afternoon because of a large brush fire that was being fanned by winds.Beachwood Intermediate South School was closed just after 12:30 p.m. Parents were told not to report to the school. The Ocean County Sheriff's Dept. said that all children were going to be safely evacuated to another location.
    A New Jersey school and several homes were evacuated Thursday afternoon because of a large brush fire that was being fanned by winds.Beachwood Intermediate South School was closed just after 12:30 p.m. Parents were told not to report to the school. The Ocean County Sheriff's Dept. said that all children were going to be safely evacuated to another location.
  • Cops swarm home after disgruntled Call of Duty gamer calls in swatting hoax

    Cops swarm home after disgruntled Call of Duty gamer calls in swatting hoax

    Thursday, April 24 2014 12:05 PM EDT2014-04-24 16:05:27 GMT
    Heavily armed police officers descended on a home in Long Beach, Long Island thinking they might find a grisly murder scene. Instead they found a terrified woman who had no clue what they were talking about and her teenaged son playing video games.
    Heavily armed police officers descended on a home in Long Beach, Long Island thinking they might find a grisly murder scene. Instead they found a terrified woman who had no clue what they were talking about and her teenaged son playing video games.
  • Girl fights to bring 22-year-old prom date

    Girl fights to bring 22-year-old prom date

    Thursday, April 24 2014 11:50 AM EDT2014-04-24 15:50:19 GMT
    A Connecticut teenager is appealing to her local Board of Education after school officials rejected her request to bring her 21-year-old boyfriend to her prom.
    A Connecticut teenager is appealing to her local Board of Education after school officials rejected her request to bring her 21-year-old boyfriend to her prom.
  • Latest Development in the Kilpatrick Corruption TrialMore>>

  • Bobby Ferguson sentenced to 21 years in prison

    Bobby Ferguson sentenced to 21 years in prison

    Friday, October 11 2013 3:20 PM EDT2013-10-11 19:20:27 GMT
    Bobby Ferguson, a former city contractor and longtime friend of ex-Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, has been sentenced to 21 years in federal prison for his role in a public corruption case.
    Bobby Ferguson, a former city contractor and longtime friend of ex-Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, has been sentenced to 21 years in federal prison for his role in a public corruption case.
  • Kwame Kilpatrick sentenced to 28 years in prison

    Kwame Kilpatrick sentenced to 28 years in prison

    Thursday, October 10 2013 9:33 PM EDT2013-10-11 01:33:28 GMT
    A federal judge sentenced former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick Thursday to 28 years in prison for his role in a public corruption scandal that cost the city millions and ended a career for the once promising politician.
    A federal judge sentenced former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick Thursday to 28 years in prison for his role in a public corruption scandal that cost the city millions and ended a career for the once promising politician.
  • Judge: Ex-Mayor Kilpatrick must pay $4.7 million

    Judge: Ex-Mayor Kilpatrick must pay $4.7 million

    Tuesday, December 10 2013 8:04 PM EST2013-12-11 01:04:30 GMT
    A federal judge has granted prosecutors' request and has ordered imprisoned ex-Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick to pay $4.7 million in restitution.
    A federal judge has granted prosecutors' request and has ordered imprisoned ex-Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick to pay $4.7 million in restitution.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices