June 29, 2012
By John Clark
Ayanna Kilpatrick, the sister of former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, who will face trial for federal corruption charges this fall, has filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, according to a report from the Detroit Free Press.
And the Detroit newspaper is quick to note that the recent bankruptcy filing is not the first time that Ayanna Kilpatrick has experienced financial problems. The article says that, a few years ago, Kilpatrick suffered through a home foreclosure.
In addition, sources say that Kilpatrick had close ties to the Kilpatrick Civic Fund, a controversial fund started by her brother that was investigated for "questionable spending" in 2010.
That year, the Detroit Free Press reported that more than $220,000 of the group’s budget was not properly accounted for, and this is just one of the several charges that have been leveled against her brother.
Kwame Kilpatrick, the former mayor of Detroit, is reportedly facing a trial for public corruption in September. Sources say that the former mayor and his father, Bernard Kilpatrick, are being accused of operating a profitable criminal enterprise from the mayor’s office.
Both men claim they are innocent. And while Ayanna Kilpatrick has managed to evade criminal charges, she has not escaped scrutiny from local reporters in Detroit, and she is struggling through financial difficulties of her own.
Sources say that Kilpatrick owes more than $345,000 to a long list of creditors, including Discover, Macy’s, and Nordstrom. She also reportedly owes more than $54,000 in unpaid taxes to the federal government, according to sources.
And her financial prospects appear bleak. Kilpatrick only listed two assets in her bankruptcy filing. These included $877 in personal property and a large home in Detroit that is worth $70, which is a far cry from the highest value of the home, which was set at $250,000 years ago.
In her filing, Kilpatrick says she works as a self-employed consultant, and reportedly earns an annual salary of about $24,000. She did, however, tell the court that her business is currently "dissolving."
The financial plight of the Kilpatricks mirrors the plight of their native city, Detroit, which has experienced a historic collapse in recent decades, although the recent success of its car companies does give local residents some hope for the future.
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