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Detroit councilman George Cushingberry says he was a victim of racial profiling

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In a non-apology to his colleagues, Detroit Councilman George Cushingberry expressed contrition for being caught "driving while black," as reported yesterday by Joe Guillen of the Detroit Free Press.

Cushingberry is lashing out after being found with alcohol and marijuana last week after being pulled over for not putting on his turn signal, although another report states that he actually "led Detroit Police Special Operations officers on a chase."

Cushingberry said that he had "an empty rum bottle, left over from a party about a week earlier, in his backseat and a passenger who is a medical marijuana patient and caregiver who had marijuana on him." He said he only had a shot of rum with dinner at a local strip club.

The controversial councilman also said he was "mistreated by two white police officers," but one of the officers was black, as reported at Deadline Detroit yesterday. In an interesting twist, a police supervisor was suspended, but because he only gave the councilman a traffic citation for his misdeeds.

Cushingberry said,

“I wanted to say to my colleagues, if any of you were embarrassed by the driving while black incident that happened to me, please forgive me...It’s unfortunate we still have these types of incidents in our city.”

Clearly, Mr. Cushingberry is not contrite, and it is clear that he will be keeping his position. Council President Brenda Jones said to reporters who asked whether the councilman would be removed,

“If you get a ticket, you're a citizen. Yes, he is a public figure, but he has a ticket for failure to signal. Would you remove someone for failure to signal? Would you all do it? For a ticket for failure to signal? The police chief is investigating. Let’s let the police chief investigate.”

Brenda Jones was recently criticized by the Detroit News in a scathing OpEd, which said in part that Jones "denied Detroit’s financial crisis and refused to accept the dramatic consequences of the city’s circumstances." Cushingberry responded to the OpEd, as reported by Deadline Detroit, by telling the news outlet in part to "go straight to hell."

Follow Renee Nal on Twitter @ReneeNal and Facebook.

Check out her news and political commentary on Liberty Unyielding, Gather and for news you won't find in the mainstream media. Renee is also a guest blogger for the Shire Blog.



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