DETROIT (AP) — Former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, who has served seven years of a 28-year sentence for corruption, has been turned down for home confinement during the coronavirus pandemic and won’t be leaving prison early, the government said Tuesday.
The U.S. Bureau of Prisons said it “reviewed and denied” Kilpatrick for the early release program. He remains at the federal prison in Oakdale, Louisiana.
The brief statement came four days after a Detroit-area pastor and the Ebony Foundation announced that Kilpatrick would be leaving Oakdale, which has been hit hard by the coronavirus and COVID-19.
The Rev. Keyon Payton said Kilpatrick was being quarantined ahead of a June release to his mother’s home in Atlanta. He said foundation representatives and allies of the former mayor had been in “constant communication” with the Trump administration.
State Rep. Karen Whitsett, a Detroit Democrat, said President Trump told her last week that Kilpatrick would be released.
Since the pandemic began, the Bureau of Prisons is supposed to give priority to inmates who have served a much larger share of their sentence than Kilpatrick.
Kilpatrick, 49, has served only a quarter. With good time credits, he’s listed for release in 2037.
In 2013, Kilpatrick was convicted of racketeering conspiracy, fraud, extortion and tax crimes. The government called it the “Kilpatrick enterprise,” a yearslong scheme to shake down contractors and reward allies.
Kilpatrick’s lawyers had asked for a 15-year sentence. But U.S. District Judge Nancy Edmunds agreed with prosecutors and ordered an extraordinary 28-year term.
Payton said he and others believe the sentence was excessive. The Ebony Foundation is the charity arm of the company that publishes Ebony Magazine.