Former Detroit mayor out of prison; crony still behind bars

DETROIT (AP) — President Donald Trump's mercy toward Kwame Kilpatrick didn't extend to the former Detroit mayor's partner in crime.

Kilpatrick was released from prison Wednesday after his 28-year sentence for corruption was reduced to time served by Trump. But his pal, Bobby Ferguson, remains behind bars on a 21-year sentence.

“That doesn’t sit well with me at all,” Ferguson's trial attorney, Michael Rataj, told The Detroit News. “Kilpatrick gets out and Bobby’s still stuck in prison? Tell me how that makes any sense.”

Evidence at the 2012-13 trial showed Kilpatrick went to bat for Ferguson on city contracts and punished contractors who didn’t make room for him on excavation jobs. Prosecutors said $73 million of Ferguson’s $127 million in revenue from city work came through extortion.

He was convicted of racketeering conspiracy, extortion and bribery.

“Bobby Ferguson was the catalyst at the center of an historic and unprecedented criminal scheme,” U.S. District Judge Nancy Edmunds said in 2013.

Kilpatrick's supporters said the former mayor deserved a break because his sentence was excessive. He served more than seven years before winning freedom this week.