Posted Feb. 29, 2008 – Detroit 's embattled mayor says he won't resign, despite the recent revelation of public records that appear to show a cover-up behind his move to settle a lawsuit with former cops.
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City Council introduced a resolution Thursday, asking that Kwame Kilpatrick step down, after the Michigan Supreme Court declined to hear an appeal by Kilpatrick that documents related to the settlement be kept secret.
The records in question show that Kilpatrick abruptly changed his mind in favor of giving two ex-officers more than $8 million in damages after Kilpatrick learned that a record of sexually explicit text messages existed between him and his former chief of staff.
Deputy Chief Gary Brown and Executive Security Officer Harold Nelthrope sued the City of Detroit in 2007, claiming they were wrongfully dismissed and lost wages after starting an investigation that would’ve led to public exposure of an affair between the married mayor and Christine Beatty, who’s now divorced.
Both Beatty and Kilpatrick testified at trial that they were never romantically involved, and that discipline toward the officers was protocol, not politics. But a jury sided with the officers, and Kilpatrick publicly vowed to appeal the decision. This week’s release of the records suggests that he changed his mind immediately upon learning that a record of the text messages could show that he and Beatty perjured themselves during the trial.
The Detroit Free Press printed an exposé of the text messages in January, but the paper continued investigating what it called the “secret agreement.” Under the agreement, it’s reported that Kilpatrick’s decision to support a settlement with the ex-cops required that neither they, nor their lawyers, ever discuss the text messages. The Wayne County prosecutor is conducting an investigation that could result in criminal charges against the mayor.