Sparks fly in the corruption trial of Kwame Kilpatrick as the attorney for co-defendant Bobby Ferguson grills a federal agent on the witness stand.
Outside the court Kilpatrick chanting the name, Rataj! Rataj! Rataj. Kwame Kilpatrick has a new hero, and so does his pal and co-defendant Bobby Ferguson.
Meet Mike Rataj, Marine, Hockey Player, Master of the mini-mullet and zealous advocate for the defense. "In the picture that's been painted of Bobby Ferguson, is wrong and its skewed
and so our job is to make sure the jury understands exactly who he was and who he is."
Rataj squared off Thursday with federal agent Carol Carol Paszkiewicz over the meaning of this text message exchange between Ferguson and then-Mayor Kilpatrick.
Ferguson: Hate to bother you, but you need to hear this: Pratap people stopped negotiating with my people and is trying to give the water main job to one of the other contractors.
Ferguson: Just what you said before; when we are not a part of the decision making, we get f----d no matter how the process started.
Paszkiewicz testified Wednesday that the message showed Ferguson throwing his weight around. But Rataj says she got it all wrong; The real message is that Ferguson wanted the mayor to help another minority contractor get city work.
"These text messages are open to multiple interpretations and I asked if agent Carol Paszkiewicz is a mind reader. And she's not a mind reader. So this whole exercise that the government is going through is a waste of time. Because she doesn't know what's in somebody's head," Rataj said.
That's why it's so hard to tell who's winning this case. One day a piece of evidence makes it seem like the prosecution is on top, the next day the very same piece of evidence can make it appear that the defense has the upper hand.