Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, who has been in legal entanglements for months over an alleged affair with a city aide and a bevy of felony criminal charges including perjury, misconduct and obstruction of justice, has been locked away for violating the conditions of his bail while awaiting the outcome of his criminal trial.
Kilpatrick had been given permission to travel with notification, but forfeited that right when he was charged by a sheriff’s investigator with physical assault, resulting in a fractured hip. The county may still pursue criminal charges in this incident.
However, despite his status as mayor, the judge treated Kilpatrick as he would have any other charged individual out on bond: she jailed him when he violated the terms of his bail. As he memorably put it, “If it was not Kwame Kilpatrick sitting in that seat, if it was John Six-Pack sitting in the seat, what would I do? And that answer is simple.”
It’s a good lesson in understanding the severe consequences of deciding not to comply with court-ordered restrictions; and it’s also a good example that Wayne County has set by not showing favoritism to public officials who violate the law.