Citing Knee Injury, Kwame Kilpatrick Seeks Release From Jail

The former mayor of Detroit says his knee condition, which requires surgery, makes him highly unlikely to leave town before sentencing.

Posted: 06/04/2013 09:49 AM EDT
Citing Knee Injury, Kwame Kilpatrick Seeks Release From Jail

REPORTING FROM DETROIT

Kwame Kilpatrick, the former mayor of Detroit, is seeking again to be released from prison, arguing that a knee injury that requires surgery will render him unable to leave town and that he is not a flight risk.

Kilpatrick, who served as mayor from 2002 to 2008, was convicted in March of several felony counts, including mail fraud, wire fraud and racketeering. He is in custody while awaiting sentencing.

The former mayor suffered a knee injury on the same day of his conviction. United States District Court Judge Nancy Edmonds has so far denied numerous requests by Kilpatrick’s lawyers to allow him to leave prison while awaiting sentencing.

Harold Gurewitz, Kilpatrick’s court-appointed lawyer, has argued that the former mayor’s injury would make him an unlikely person to leave town. In court papers, the lawyer cited a letter from Kilpatrick’s doctor, saying that the former mayor will require physical therapy after surgery. He added that Kilpatrick may need a walker.

Kilpatrick's mother, former United States Congresswoman Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick, had offered her Detroit home as collateral to ensure her son will appear in court for sentencing.

A onetime wunderkind of Detroit politics who was considered the voice of a new generation of political leadership, Kilpatrick had a stunning fall from grace. He resigned after being convicted of perjury and obstruction of justice.

The former mayor was sentenced to four months in jail after pleading guilty, but was released on probation after serving 99 days. However, he was sentenced in May of 2010 to prison for violating his probation and served time at the Oaks Correctional Facility in northwest Michigan.

In his earlier attempts to be released from jail, Kilpatrick stated through his lawyers that he was not a flight risk because his finances had dwindled dramatically and he didn't have money to leave town.

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(Photo:  Reuters /JEFF KOWALSKY /LANDOV)

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