Prosecutors in Detroit have filed perjury charges against Kwame Kilpatrick, alleging "The Hip-Hop Mayor" repeatedly lied under oath in regards to an affair with his former Chief of Staff, Christine Beatty.
Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy filed the felony charges against Mayor Kilpatrick and Beatty today (March 24), claiming the pair lied under oath during a 2007 whistle-blower lawsuit, involving Deputy Police Chief Gary Brown.
Officer Brown claimed that he was fired from his job after investigating claims by Officer Harold Nelthrope, who said he feared for his life, after he expressed concerns that the Mayor Kilpatrick was using his security unit to cover up his extramarital affair with Beatty.
Mayor Kilpatrick is married with three children, while Beatty was married during the affair and has two children.
Both Mayor Kilpatrick and Beatty denied having the affair under oath and both testified that Officer Brown was fired for professional reasons.
Today Kilpatrick released a brief statement.
"I look forward to complete exoneration once all the facts surrounding this matter have been brought forth," Kilpatrick said during a statement at a news conference.
Prosecutor Kym Worthy claims that Mayor Kilpatrick, 37, agreed to settle the lawsuit for $8.4 million dollars, in an attempt to keep the salacious text messages between he and Beatty from becoming public.
The city approved the settlement, but was unaware of the text messages, or a secret deal that Mayor Kilpatrick allegedly struck to keep the text messages from public view.
Excerpts of 2003 text messages sent from Mayor Kilpatricks city issued pager to Beattys surfaced in January of this year and strongly contradicted Mayor Kilpatricks sworn testimony for firing Officer Brown and settling the lawsuit.
"Some have suggested that the issues in this case are personal or private," Prosecutor Kym Worthy said. "The justice system has been severely mocked and the public trust trampled on this case is about as far from being a private matter as one can get."
Mayor Kilpatrick faces eight charges, including conspiracy to obstruct justice, obstruction of justice, misconduct in office, perjury in a court proceeding and two counts of perjury other than in a court proceeding.
Beatty hit with seven charges, including conspiracy to obstruct justice, obstruction of justice, two counts of perjury in a court proceeding and two counts of perjury other than in a court proceeding.
If convicted, Mayor Kilpatrick, who is the first sitting Mayor in Detroits history to be charged with a crime, must immediately resign from his position.
Mayor Kilpatrick and Beatty also faces 15 years in prison if convicted.
In 2002, Mayor Kilpatrick became the youngest elected mayor in Detroit history.
He embraced Hip-Hop music and culture in 2003 by hosting Eminem, Russell Simmons and numerous other rappers during 2003s Hip-Hop Summit at Cobo Arena and again 2006 at Wayne State University.