Detroiters hurl insults at city council, raising rhetoric over emergency manager fight

A majority of Detroit City Council made clear last week that they would support the work of new emergency manager, Kevyn Orr, by approving a major contract with his former reconstruction firm.

And today, residents opposed to state intervention let their frustrations out, even calling for council to be charged with the same racketeering charges leveled against former mayor Kwame Kilpatrick.

“There’s a whole bunch of criminals in this room,” Keith Hines told council members.

Another woman yelled out, “You are all sellouts.”

Added a block club member: “You better wake up because some of you are going to jail, and I will be the first to laugh at you because you’ve been laughing at us for years.”

One resident to Councilman Andre Spivey, who is a pastor: “Your parishioners don’t even like you anymore.”

Last week, some Detroiters were arrested after protesters shut down a council meeting by singing and locking hands.

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Steve Neavling, who lives on the city’s east side, is an investigative journalist, a freelance reporter for Reuters and former city hall reporter for the Detroit Free Press. Neavling explores corruption, Detroit’s unsung heroes and the underbelly of an oft-misunderstood city.

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Steve Neavling

Steve Neavling lives and works in Detroit as an investigative journalist. His stories have uncovered corruption, led to arrests and reforms and prompted FBI investigations.