FORT WORTH, Texas (CN) - Former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick's wife claims Wayne County, Michigan and its district attorney took money that belongs to her and the couple's three children to pay off her husband's $1 million restitution.
"Defendants are attempting to capture the assets of the plaintiffs, in violation of the law, to settle the restitution of Kwame Kilpatrick," Carlita Kilpatrick and their three minor children claim in Federal Court
First elected in 2001 when he was 31, Kwame Kilpatrick was the youngest mayor in Detroit history. He resigned in 2008 after being charged with several felonies, including perjury and obstruction of justice. As part of his punishment he was ordered to pay $1 million in restitution to Wayne County.
Wayne County District Attorney Kym Worthy obtained a court order to take $36,000 from the "Kilpatrick Civic Fund," an organization not controlled by Kwame Kilpatrick, which paid a moving company to help the family relocate from Michigan to Texas, Carlita Kilpatrick says.
"While Mr. Kwame Kilpatrick was incarcerated in Michigan in January 2009, plaintiffs Carlita Kilpatrick [and her minor children] each received a gift of $12,500 from friends and well-wishers in Michigan to assist them through the tough financial and personal period," Carlita Kilpatrick says.
She says the defendants won an order directing her and her children to pay 30 percent of these gifts for Kwame Kilpatrick's restitution.
"The defendant has also sought and received an order to have the entire $23,369, the amount of the joint 2008 federal tax return for Kwame Kilpatrick and plaintiff, Carlita Kilpatrick, paid to them as part of this restitution, without regard to the plaintiff's share of the money, or her status as an innocent spouse under the Internal Revenue Code," Carlita Kilpatrick says.
Worthy and Wayne County are also going after the education funds of the Kilpatricks' three children, Carlita Kilpatrick says.
The Kilpatricks took out $240,000 in loans to fund their move from Michigan to Texas, and Carlita says the defendants got an order directing all of it to be paid to them as part of Kwame Kilpatrick's restitution.
"Defendants are continuing to seek these assets belonging to plaintiffs to partially satisfy Mr. Kilpatrick's restitution," Carlita Kilpatrick says. "Defendants are taking these assets without affording plaintiffs' due process of law."
She claims that Wayne County and Worthy's actions arise from their "personal vendetta" against Kwame Kilpatrick.
She seeks damages for the violation of her due process, and an order enjoining the county from taking income and resources from her and her kids to pay her husband's restitution.
Carlita Kilpatrick is represented by Bobbie Edmonds of Fort Worth.