Category: Breaking News Written by Huffington Post
DETROIT -- A judge accused of misconduct in a dispute over the estate of Rosa Parks says he won't step aside from the case.
Wayne County Probate Judge Freddie Burton Jr. says an attorney who wants him disqualified has offered nothing but "insulting" and "malicious" allegations. His response was filed last week.
Steven G. Cohen has accused Burton of conspiring with two lawyers to put the estate of the civil rights pioneer in debt. Parks left almost all her estate to the Rosa and Raymond Parks Institute, which Cohen represents. When Parks' nieces and nephews challenged the estate, the judge appointed two lawyers as fiduciaries.
The Michigan Supreme Court reversed some of Burton's decisions in December, including the appointments of fiduciaries.
Cohen wants the chief judge of Probate Court to disqualify Burton.
Last Updated on Friday, 22 June 2012 09:48
Category: Breaking News Written by Huffington Post
It would be nice to think that the election of Barack Obama swept the U.S. into a new, miraculous post-racial era. But at the moment of his historic victory, the Great Recession was busy proving that that definitely wasn't the case.
By 2010, the weak economy had disproportionately devastated the finances of black and Hispanic households -- so much so that the median household net worth for whites was 22 times as high as it was for blacks.
That's according to newly released Census data cited at CNNMoney, where it's also noted that by 2010 the median household net worth for whites was 15 times higher than that of Hispanics.
There's been a trickle of figures from the 2010 Census in recent days, much of it confirming what we more or less already knew: the recession was bad for people's bank accounts; more cash-strapped families are doubling up in the same house.
Similarly, the news about the growing racial wealth gap isn't exactly news. Whites and minorities weren't exactly on even footing even before the recession. In 2005, median household wealth for whites was 12 times that of blacks and eight times that of Hispanics, according to CNNMoney. But the downturn has certainly made the disparity a lot more pronounced.
In part, that's because the housing crisis hit minority homeowners hardest of all, with blacks and Latinos almost twice as likely to have been affected by foreclosure as whites.
Blacks and Hispanics have also been experiencing the jobs crisis differently. Unemployment rose for both groups during the recession more rapidly than it did for whites. And after the worst of the recession was over, and the national unemployment rate began to fall, the black unemployment rate continued to climb.
Last Updated on Friday, 22 June 2012 09:44
Category: News Briefs Written by Patrick Keating, Chronicle Staff Writer
Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson was the keynote speaker at the Michigan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce’s 8th annual public policy breakfast.
During the course of his comments, Patterson said Oakland County got to where it is now — with a AAA bond rating, a nice surplus and jobs on the rise — through changes to the benefits packages.
“We’ve had 20-some adjustments that really have put us in good shape,” he said. “In 1984, we discontinued longevity pay. What that meant is if you were with the county more than 10 years, you got 10 percent. Well, we discontinued doing that. That was a handcuff in the old days.”
He said the county has subsequently saved $55 million in payments.
“In 2006, we discontinued the traditional defined benefit and went to our DCP plan, defined contribution,” he said. “On that one, we saved $400 million. If you take all of the adjustments we’ve saved to benefits and so forth, the total we’ve saved is $650 million. That’s why the county is in such good financial shape. We started a long time ago.”
Patterson reiterated his mantra: “thoughtful management vs. crisis management,” and said this is the result of decades of thoughtful management.
“Now the benefits have come home to roost,” he said.
Patterson added that Oakland is the only county in the United States to have paid off its legacy costs.
“You hear so much about legacy costs or promises made for retired health care,” he said. “We’re done. We paid it off a couple of years ago.”
He called it a win/win/win all around.
As to the future of Oakland County, Patterson said that the county once had all its proverbial eggs in the automotive basket, and that he couldn’t get out of that basket fast enough.
He said county officials could see that there would be a change in the kind of jobs available for the future.
“We went out there and did our research, and we found 10 sectors for employment in the future, and those sectors, of course, are the ones we now call the emergent sectors,” he said. “Every month, my staff gives me a report on how we’re doing in bringing in business in these 10 sectors.”
The sectors are advanced electronics, advanced materials and nanotechnology, aerospace, alternative energy, communication and IT, defense and homeland security — which Patterson said is one of the Top 10 growth sectors — film and digital media, insurance, Medical Main Street, and robotics.
He noted that since the inception of this program in 2004, the county has brought in 205 companies within those sectors. Those companies have invested $1.8 billion and created 26,000 jobs, and have paid $46 million to the federal state and local units of government. Of that, Oakland County got $4.3 million.
“So it’s paying for itself,” Patterson said.
“Diversification is the future of Oakland County,” Patterson stated. “We’re going into the high-tech sector. You might call it the knowledge-based economy. That’s where I’m gambling that I think this country’s going to go.”
He believes a knowledge-based economy will result in sustainable, high-paying jobs in the future.
Patterson also said it will take about 25 years before the county gets to the diversification he thinks is necessary. At that point, the county will likely be recession resistant.
He said he has got 109 people in the county’s Economic Development Department “laser focused” on emerging sectors.
He also said the budget dominates in this climate, and that the Budget Task Force works on it every week.
“But we still can walk and chew gum,” he said, adding that the Center for Digital Government has recognized Oakland as the most digitally progressive county in the country.
“For two years in a row, we’ve been ranked No. 1 out of 3,000 counties,” he said. “So we’re doing other things besides the budget.”
He pointed out that the county has had time to develop quality of life issues. One of them is Arts, Beats and Eats, which started in 1999.
“It’s now a major festival, ranked in the Top 10 in the country as far as attraction,” he said.
Another program is Count Your Steps, another major attraction.
“I asked my friends in the corporate sector to help buy pedometers for every third and fourth grader in Oakland County,” Patterson said. “We walk for a whole month.”
He said the kids have walked a combined 17 billion steps.
The Brooksie Way, named for Patterson’s late son, Brooks Stuart Patterson, who died in a 2007 snowmobile accident, is a half marathon Patterson initiated as a physical fitness initiative.
He said it grows every year and that profits are put into a fund called the Brooksie Way Mini.
“Any organization in Oakland County that has as its mission, its purpose for that group, to improve the health of its membership or improve the health of the community, we’ll help fund their costs,” he said.
During a subsequent question and answer session, Patterson spoke of the county’s efforts to attract foreign investment. He said Automation Alley, the technology and business association established in the 1990s, takes two or three trade missions a year.
He also noted that the county does a lot of international recruiting.
“We now have 840 foreign firms in Oakland County, creating about 140,000 to 145,000 jobs,” Patterson said.
He also pointed out that the county takes firms to foreign countries.
“They want to expand into the international market, so it’s a two way street, it’s not just imports,” he said.
L. Brooks Patterson addresses Hispanic business forum
Last Updated on Thursday, 21 June 2012 14:33
Category: Breaking News Written by AJ Williams, Chronicle Web Editor
Having a child with ex-girlfriend Halle Berry turned out to be profitable for Gabriel Aubry.
TMZ reports that a family law judge ordered Berry to pay Aubry $20,000 a month in child support.
In April Aubry filed legal documents asking a judge to force Berry to give him $15,000 to $20,000 a month for a proper home, so that the couple's 4-year-old daughter, Nahla, would keep living in the surroundings to which she has become accustomed. TMZ reported that the Canadian model also demanded a long list of other things from Berry, including money for Nahla's clothing, and funds so that he can take her home to Canada to visit his family.
The former couple, who split in February 2010, have been in and out of court for months battling over custody of Nahla, and they are due back in court again for a judge to decide whether Halle can take Nahla and move to Paris.
Berry is engaged to French actor Oliver Martinez, and she filed a request in family court for permission to move to France with Nahla, because she fears for her life.
Richard Franco was convicted of stalking Berry, but is out of jail after serving only 193 days of his initial 386 day sentence, while Robert Hoskins, a man who allegedly threatened to slit Berry's throat, escaped from a mental institution in February. With both men running free, the actress wants to get as far away as possible.
Last Updated on Thursday, 21 June 2012 13:28
Category: Top News Written by Minehaha Forman, Special To The Chronicle
ROY ROBERTS (left), DPS emergency manager, and John Covington, Education Achievement Authority chancellor. — Monica Morgan photo
Detroit’s social and economical resurgence hangs in the balance of public education. Poorly performing schools scare off current and potential residents, which in turn shrinks the tax base, spelling hard times for the city at large.
But after years of mismanagement and financial pitfalls, a new day is dawning for Detroit Public Schools. That was the message leaders spearheading education reform in Detroit were spreading at the Michigan Chronicle’s Pancakes & Politics forum at the Detroit Athletic Club on Thursday, June 14.
The forum, titled “Education 911,” hosted two panelists who are arguably the most influential of the “Pancakes” speaker series when it comes to Detroit: Roy Roberts, DPS emergency manager, and Dr. John Covington, chancellor of Michigan’s new Education Achievement Authority (EAA).
The event concluded the annual four-part Pancakes & Politics series for 2012 with a theme of transformation.
During the lively and frank discussion, the team shared their vision for the future of public schools in Detroit, informing the over 300 attendees of their plans. The message was clear: it’s time for change. Roberts and Covington are heading up a massive turnaround for Detroit Public Schools. They’re not talking minor policy shifts, they’re geared to reset major functions in the system.
Most of the focus of the forum was on the EAA, a new public school system in Michigan with a mission to transform the lowest achieving schools into the highest. Because 38 of the 100 worst performing schools in the state were in DPS, the program is launching in Detroit. And for that kind of turnaround, schools can expect big changes.
“There’s a misunderstanding that the EAA is going to come in and close a bunch of schools. That’s not the case. It’s making these schools better,” said Covington.
“It’s a wonderful thing,” said Roberts, who Gov. Rick Snyder appointed to chair the executive committee for the organization, giving him the authority to make the decisions on which schools enter the EAA. Still, out of the 38 lowest performing schools, Roberts has only transferred 15 of these into the EAA so far, including some charter schools.
“There is no war between DPS and charter schools. The war is over. It’s law: If we have a charter school, a DPS or an EAA school that is not performing, we will take them out of here,” Roberts said.
EAA schools will be different. For instance, they will assign 95 percent of their total funding to classrooms instead of administrative posts. And there will be no grade system. Students will move up based on the classes they passed, not their age. The new independent entity is a public/private partnership between Detroit Public Schools, the State of Michigan and Eastern Michigan University.
“We meet with parents on a regular basis so they understand this is not a bad thing,” Covington said about the EAA. “We’re going to transform how we teach and deliver services.”
Another change parents will notice in the new school system is the number of required instruction hours increasing. That is to make sure students have to keep up with global learning. In some countries, students are in school seven days a week, all year long.
According to Covington, Michigan has the lowest number of required instruction hours for its students in the entire nation. He said Michigan schools require 170 days of instruction per year for students, a number he bumped up to 210 for students in EAA schools.
Between Roberts and Covington, it was clear their passion for education is strong and genuine, and the changes they are making they believe are the best for the most important stakeholders — the children.
“Kids can’t vote and kids don’t have money so I’m speaking for the kids,” said Roberts, recalling when he was a young student in a family that struggled to make ends meet. “I’m gonna keep the conversation on the kids.”
Covington remembered a time when he worked in a correctional facility and noticed the young people inside were very smart and had great potential but were, sadly, products of a failing system. Since then he said he has committed his life to bettering education to keep as many youths as possible outside of bars.
“When test scores are low, we always want to start with the kids and don’t stop to think that it might not be the kids, it’s the adults in the system,” he said.
Roberts looked back on his first year as emergency manager and said he learned a lot.
“I was foolish last year. I’m wise this year. It’s the toughest job I’ve ever had in my life,” he said. “The people you try to help the most are the ones toughest on you.”
As far as unions go, Roberts said he hopes everyone will do what’s right for the children and is optimistic that there will not be a strike. The EAA system is not yet unionized.
“Right now we’re starting the EAA without being hamstrung by collective bargaining agreements,” he said.
Looking forward, Roberts said he plans to better his communication with parents and students.
“All parents want their children to do well. We need to do a better job of customer service,” he said. “We have to forge relationships with parents and treat them in a way we believe the parents and kids are most important.”
But Roberts and Covington insist that they cannot transform schools without the support of stakeholders from all backgrounds. It’s in everyone’s best interest to have schools that provide the best education for students now and generations to come.
“This is something we can’t do by ourselves,” Covington said, calling on people to get involved in the process. “We need the general community to get actively involved.”
The sponsors who made this discussion possible include Buick, Comcast Business Class, Strategic Staffing Solutions, HAP, Honigman, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, PNC, Quicken Loans and UHY.
Last Updated on Thursday, 21 June 2012 12:33
Category: Top News Written by Steve Holsey
Some people were, in the most literal sense, born to do what they do. For these people, there are no other options. The question is not, “How do I go about doing this?” Rather, it is, “I am going to do this.”
In the field of entertainment, Michael Jackson was a perfect example of that. The same applies to Sammy Davis Jr., Diana Ross, Liza Minnelli, Ben Vereen and others.
So it is with Usher Terry Raymond IV who, since emerging in 1993, has established himself as a multi-talented entertainer (singer, dancer, actor, songwriter) who is here to stay, in it for the long haul so to speak, like Beyoncé, LL Cool J, Queen Latifah, Will Smith, Jennifer Hudson and others who comprise a list that is not particularly long.
USHER HAS used the word “flamboyant” to describe himself, which is a great asset when one is on stage keeping people entertained.
Right now Usher is hard at work promoting his just-released new album, “Looking 4 Myself,” and it is expected to equal if not surpass the sales of such previous megahits as “Confessions,” “Raymond v. Raymond,” “8701” and “Here I Stand.”
Usher was born in Dallas, Texas, but his childhood was spent primarily in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Not surprisingly, he got his first experience singing in the youth choir at church. It felt good and right.
ventures. He is part owner of a professinal basketball team, the Cleveland Cavaliers, and is involved in several restaurants. He is also the founder of New Look, a non-profit organization, the purpose of which is “to provide young people with a new look on life through education and real world experience.” The organization also revitalized a part of New Orleans following the disaster that did so much damage to the city. Usher says he believes in giving, on stage and off.
Last Updated on Thursday, 21 June 2012 12:24
Category: Top News Written by Leland Stein III
With the 2012 London Olympic Games on the horizon, it seems appropriate to revisit one of the legends of the Olympic Games.
Doing my usual channel surfing, I came up on a PBS documentary, “American Experience: Jesse Owens.”
Most sports aficionados and history buffs know of the legend of Owens; however, his compete and dehumanizing degradation delivered by America’s intense racial separation kind of got lost in the real picture of this of a man.
Even today, over 70 years later, many Americans take pride in recalling how Owens undermined Adolf Hitler’s theory of Aryan racial superiority by winning four gold medals (100-, 200- , 4x100 meter relay, and, long jump) at the 1936 Berlin Olympics.
“American Experience: Jesse Owens,” directed by Laurens Grant and written by the frequent PBS collaborator Stanley Nelson (“Freedom Riders”), is a level and striking production that suffers from its shortness: about 52 minutes. There’s not much time to get below the surface, and Owens’ troubled post-Olympic life gets particularly abrupt treatment.
The triumph of this “American Experience” documentary on Owens, who died in 1980, is that it enshrined his Hitler situation without ignoring the depressing extent to which Owens’ own country also treated him as second class.
As an Olympian in that time, he was under the authority of U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC) chief Avery Brundage (an acknowledged racist), who admired Hitler and infamously replaced two Jewish sprinters on the 4-by-100 relay team because it could have further embarrassed Hitler if they won.
After embarrassing Hitler in his own stadium in 1936, Brundage stripped Owens of his amateur standing, effectively depriving him of the chance to make a living from his skill. For years after the Olympics, this superb athlete was relegated to a sideshow — until finally, in 1955, President Eisenhower made him a national “goodwill ambassador” promoting the high ideals of America.
However, before Eisenhower’s benevolent spirit, Owens had to race against horses and other degrading actions to support his family.
Just like Joe Louis, who knocked out German champion Maximillian Adolph Otto Siegfried Schmeling, and in spite of his color, he became an American hero. However, like Owens, it did not carry over to life in America. Louis was attacked by the IRS and it destroyed his life. Owens faired no better.
But the irony of both their lives in segregated America was that they did not outwardly complain. Maybe it was the times, where many thought it was better to go along to get along. The fact of the matter is that it was life threatening to oppose the status quo.
In the 1968 Olympics, African-American’s discontent with how they were being treated at home spilled over into one of the most famous protests in USOC history — the Tommy Smith and John Carlos black gloved raised fist during the National Anthem.
No matter how badly treated Owens was by the establishment, his nemesis, Brundage, help recruit him to talk to the African-American athletes while at the 1968 Mexico City Olympic Games. The threat of protest was in the air and the USOC wanted Owens to help defuse it. In fact, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar brought the discontent to the forefront by refusing to join the USOC basketball team.
With American cities smoldering in discontent and hungering for change and equal rights, the athletes ignored Owens’ cajoling. George Foreman, who won the heavyweight Olympic title and pranced around the ring with two American flags. He was scorned by the Black community on his return home.
Foreman told me in an interview that he was a young country boy who had no understanding of the complexity of life and the anger of his fellow African-American Olympians. He said he was just happy to be there and out of his situation at home in Houston.
Carlos and Smith became the poster boys for standing up to the injustice that was permeating American society, while Foreman and Owens took on the appearance of Uncle Toms.
For me, Owens is an almost preternaturally graceful and heroic figure, asserting his will despite isolation and scorn even greater than Jackie Robinson had to face. But he also represents the power of segregation at that time, when a man of his caliber was so beat down he was afraid to challenge inequality face to face.
Last Updated on Thursday, 21 June 2012 12:06
Category: Breaking News Written by Bankole Thompson, Chronicle Senior Editor
I woke up Saturday morning in the City of Brotherly Love and picked up the Philadelphia magazine to read about what was happening in that swing state before preparing my keynote remarks at a Black Diaspora Conference of medical professionals, academics, social scientists and entrepreneurs.
Guess who graced the cover of the most recent edition of the Philadelphia?
Ed Rendell, the former governor of that state, Democratic leader and a member of the Clinton cabal who has been trumpeting the prospects of a Hillary Clinton presidency in 2016, and has already started beating that drum now, instead of beating the drum of the Obama reelection campaign.
But this time Rendell making the cover of the Philadelphia was about his own presidential aspirations as the magazine was fiddling with the idea of a Rendell presidency.
Which begs the question: Is that why Rendell has been talking so much about 2016 instead of 2012?
In a year where the political climate is so rancorous and the economy is beginning to improve despite the slow of growth, why would Democrats like Rendell be focusing on 2016 when they have a battle to fight this year?
Have Rendell and others like him already thrown in the towel for President Obama’s reelection?
With Democrats having a tough battle and a Rubicon to cross this year, does it make political sense to waste time and breath talking about a Clinton prospect in 2016 when they’ve not yet finished the battle that is before them?
When the Obama campaign started attacking the Republican leading candidate Mitt Romney’s Bain Capital records based on interviews with former employees of the company who described how their lives were literally destroyed by “vulture capitalism,” Rendell, former president Bill Clinton and Newark Mayor Corey Booker disagreed with the campaign strategy.
In fact, Clinton praised Romney’s business record and Booker, as well as Rendell, concluded that the attacks on Romney’s Bain Capital records were not justified.
“I don’t think that we ought to get into the position where we say, ‘This is bad work. This is good work. The man who has been governor and had a sterling business career crosses the qualification threshold,” Clinton said.
The former president went on to praise Romney’s business background as “sterling” and described the Republican candidate’s days at Bain as “a good business career.”
Booker, a rising Democratic star, later tried to clarify after calling the Obama campaign attack on Romney “nauseating.” Like Clinton, Rendell veered off message.
In one of the most disingenuous remarks and off-message examples by Democratic leaders claiming to be supportive of President Obama, Rendell told CBS’ “This Morning” program that Hillary Clinton would have been a more assertive president than Obama.
“I think she would have come in with a lot more executive experience. I think the president was hurt by being a legislator only,” Rendell said.
What executive experience does Hillary Clinton have?
Are the Clinton Democrats so bent on a second return to power that they are willing to contribute to the strategy to delegitimize their own president to make him lose in November?
This subtle strategy that some Democrats are conducting, which in many ways appears to be undermining the Obama campaign, speaks of a divided camp in the Democratic Party.
It is unbelievable to watch these Democratic leaders — individuals who are very bright and are strategists themselves — going off-message under the pretext of a mistake.
Who is going to buy the excuse that these are honest gaffes and do not in any way serve to undermine efforts by Democrats to hand Obama a second term, when the individuals in question are very smart politicians who know well what can handicap an election?
Politics is much about loyalty and political campaigns are about following the script.
The difference between Republicans and Democrats is that the GOP’s definition of loyalty is almost a belief akin to religion and Democrats have no clear-cut description of what loyalty is. And in most cases they don’t even practice it, which is why for ages Democrats have been their own worst enemy.
In the book “Game Change,” a comment former president Bill Clinton reportedly made about Obama in an effort to prevent the late Sen. Edward Kennedy from endorsing Obama in 2008 is disturbing.
Clinton is quoted as telling Kennedy why he should not support Obama saying, “A few years ago, this guy (Obama) would be getting us coffee.”
And if Clinton did say such a demeaning thing — he never discounted or challenged the facts in the book — does it mean Obama would be serving him and Kennedy coffee because he is Black?
But the late Kennedy, who was eulogized by Obama, was a bigger man and refused to stoop down to dirty, racist politics. That is one of the most endearing qualities of Sen. Kennedy: he appealed beyond the cultural and political divides of the nation.
In 2008, Clinton again was on record attempting to diminish Obama’s story by describing it as a “fairy tale,” in his unrelenting pursuit to get his wife elected and a blatant condescending remark against the man who would become the nation’s first Black president.
But the reason why a Democrat like Clinton or any other can go so far in condescending politics and now appear to be more complimentary of his political opponent Romney than his own party flag bearer, Obama, is that he and others like Rendell have enjoyed unquestionable Black loyalty during their political careers. They always had the Black vote ready to be delivered whether they worked hard for it or not.
The bait and switch politics convinced Nobel laureate Toni Morrison to label Bill Clinton as “the first Black president.” That description was an inebriating tonic to the Black community.
So many got blindfolded by Morrison’s description of Clinton and allowed one of two American political dynasties to shape and dictate Black politics in recent history without any recourse to reason.
Some Black leaders and politicians, who have always traded their places in the community in exchange for a photo op at the White House Rose Garden during the Clinton years, have always been conspicuously silent whenever criticism of the former Democratic president came up.
The fact that none of them responded in media interviews (with the exception of Rev. Al Sharpton) when it was revealed that Clinton reportedly said Obama could be serving him and Sen. Kennedy coffee a few years back is stunning.
If it was a former Republican president who said that of the nation’s first Black president, there would be protest signs and press releases saying “no more slavery.”
This is the political double standard the Black community deals with and explains why some Democratic leaders get away with what they say and do.
And Clinton’s legacy in the Black community wasn’t a pretty one either, because it was under him that federal and state prison populations rose because of the severity of sentencing laws. That disproportionately affected Blacks, reducing the habeas corpus rights of the accused.
It was under Clinton that nearly one million Blacks were massacred in 100 days in Rwanda in 1994, the quickest killing spree of the 21st century. And Clinton only apologized after he left office at the Rwandan airport in Kigali where he said, “All over the world there were people like me sitting in offices who did not fully appreciate the depth and speed with which you were being engulfed by this unimaginable terror.”
What happened to the Presidential Daily Briefs during the genocide?
If Clinton was not aware of what was happening, why did he choose to meet with Rwandan human rights activist Monique Mujawamariya at the White House at the time, who pleaded with him to intervene?
And just like 2008, we see again the Clinton surrogates on the campaign trail trying to undercut the main thrust of the Obama campaign against Romney: The former governor’s business résumé and the role that Bain Capital plays.
In this current political climate it is important to demand a clean electoral process.
Just as Hamlet did in Shakespeare, urging “Angels and ministers of grace defend us.”
To take it further, Hamlet was torn between the disturbing question of whether the ghost he saw coming was a “spirit of health” or “goblin damn’d.”
The question in the 2012 presidential campaign is whether the so-called gaffes being rendered as mistakes by prominent members of the Democratic Party, like Clinton, Rendell and Booker, is healthy for the Obama campaign.
The visage of politics displayed by some of these prominent Democrats is known.
But now, “thou cometh in such a questionable shape.”
Last Updated on Wednesday, 20 June 2012 18:51
Category: Breaking News Written by Detroit News
A volunteer for the community activist group Detroit 300 was shot and killed early Wednesday morning while working security at a nightclub in downtown Detroit.
Marcel Jackson, 39, was working at a club in the 400 block of Congress, near Beaubien, and was shot after evicting a man who reportedly had hit a woman in the club earlier in the evening, said Detroit 300 co-founder Angelo Henderson.
Wayne White Jr., 25, was working with Jackson at the club and said the man returned after the club closed looking for his cellphone, but they didn't let him in because he refused to be patted down.
The man came back around 3:15 a.m., according to Detroit Police, in the passenger seat of a smoke gray Dodge Charger from about 2007 to 2009. The car circled the area a few times and returned without the passenger.
"We were paying attention to the Charger, then we heard shots from over here," White said, explaining the shots came from a different direction about 25 feet away.
White, whose bulletproof vest stopped one bullet, said Jackson was shot in the back with the bullet entering his lung and then exiting through his neck. He died Wednesday around 6 a.m. at Detroit Receiving Hospital.
A "hard-core family man," Jackson was married to his childhood sweetheart and was the father of six children, including a 5 1/2 -month-old daughter, said Detroit 300 spokesman Che Daniels.
Stan Shephard, Jackson's father-in-law, said a group of about 30 relatives celebrated Father's Day on Sunday at an Outback Steakhouse in West Bloomfield Township. Shephard said relatives are at Jackson's west-side home providing support for the children, and his widow is handling the death as well as possible. The couple's 17th wedding anniversary is Sunday.
"We're trying to keep her optimistic because that's all he was about, taking care of the family," Shephard said. "That's the kind of person he was."
Leaders of the activist group said Jackson was one of the first people they called when the group needed to patrol the streets. Daniels said Jackson spent the past few days searching for the man who allegedly raped a 13-year-old girl on the city's west side.
"Just a good guy, man," Daniels said. "He gave his all for the city of Detroit."
Jackson was the owner of executive protection agency United Security and Urban Services, based in Southfield, and planned to start a job next month as a security officer for the federal government, Daniels said.
The Detroit 300 is a group of citizens, civic groups, organizations and businesses that have joined together to fight crime in the city's residential neighborhoods. The organization is asking for donations on the family's behalf. Donations can be made at Roberts Riverwalk Hotel and Residence Detroit, 1000 River Place, or by calling the Detroit 300 hotline at (313) 826-2040 or (313) 826-8662.
"This guy helped others when they're down and out, and it's time now to do what we can to try and help them," Henderson said.
Detroit 300 volunteers have gathered about $5,000, and Daniels is asking area businesses to match the group's donation. In spite of the tragedy, Shephard said he appreciates the support from the community.
"It's a show of unity in this family and the community over here because Marcel was so widely known as a family man and always out to help somebody or to help diffuse some kind of situation," he said. "That's what my son-in-law was all about."
Jackson's funeral will be 5 p.m. Sunday at Greater Grace Temple, 23500 West Seven Mile.
The suspect is about 5-foot-7 with dark skin and was wearing a white shirt, cargo shorts and black-and-white athletic shoes when the incident occurred, Henderson said. The Detroit 300 is pleading for anybody who saw the suspect at the club, including the woman he allegedly harassed, to call police with information.
Anyone with information can call the Detroit Police Homicide Unit at (313) 596-2260 or Crime Stoppers at (800) SPEAK-UP.
From The Detroit News: http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20120620/METRO01/206200409#ixzz1yMpL7V4Q
Last Updated on Wednesday, 20 June 2012 16:29
Category: Breaking News Written by Huffington Post
Detroit Mayor Dave Bing announced Tuesday he would seek to remove the city's lawyer, Corporation Counsel Krystal Crittendon, from her position after she refused his request to resign the previous day.
In a statement, Bing claimed Crittendon's legal challenge of the Financial Stability Agreement "negatively impacted" the city's bond rating and ability to finance its ongoing operations, which could cost millions of dollars.
"Corporation Counsel believes she has an ethical obligation to the city to consider," Bing said, "but in my opinion part of that obligation as an attorney is to do no harm to your client, the City of Detroit."
Bing has been at odds with Crittendon since she filed a lawsuit on behalf of the city challenging its consent agreement with the state. She filed it on the grounds that the state owes the city millions of dollars and according to the charter, Detroit cannot enter into contracts with its debtors.
While Bing initially supported the lawsuit, he and state officials then asked her to drop the suit, saying the state could withhold revenue sharing. Without the funds, Bing and the city's state-appointed CFO Jack Martin said, the city would not be able to make payroll.
While Crittendon refused, saying it was her responsibility as Corporation Counsel, a judge denied her challenge.
"This is about the City of Detroit, the city of Detroit’s charter and doing what the people of Detroit wanted the corporation counsel to do when they revised the charter,” Crittendon told the Detroit Free Press.
Bing said he plans to meet with City Council this week and seek a two-thirds vote to remove Crittendon. In his letter to Crittendon requesting her resignation, he wrote:
Some observers have called for a formal removal process under the Charter. That very public process would be drawn out, would cause further needless harm to the City, and would further undermine the City's ability to move forward with the critical task before us-- restoring the City. I therefore believe that your resignation is the path most consistent with your ethical obligations.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 20 June 2012 09:51
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