Kilpatrick trial resumes; Evelyn cross examines contractor - FOX 32 News Chicago

Kilpatrick trial resumes; Evelyn cross examines contractor

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After a two week hiatus, the Kwame Kilpatrick corruption trial is back in session.  The attorney for Bobby Ferguson was cross-examining contractor Thomas Hardiman last month when he took ill.

"A sensation I never experienced before, so I wasn't sure what was happening," said Gerald Evelyn.

"I was really uncomfortable when I asked for the break.  I remember the judge saying take five minutes and I remember thinking if I can get back in five minutes, it will be a miracle."
He left the courthouse on a stretcher.

Evelyn returned Tuesday, again raising questions about whether Ferguson extorted contractors or whether contractors used Ferguson to get water department deals.

There were also other differences waiting for jurors.  The actual landscape of the courtroom has changed.  The witness who for more than a month sat in front of the judge is now off to the side where both the judge and the jury can see their face, but that's not the important thing.  The real significance is what's no longer there and that's one of the defendants.

That defendant is Victor Mercado, who pleaded guilty last week to conspiracy to commit extortion, leaving just three defendants.

Judge Nancy Edmunds told jurors not to read anything into Mercado's disappearance.

Fox 2 legal analyst Charlie Langton said that's not as tall an order as you might think.

"This trial is far from over.  If we're halfway done, I'd be shocked.  By the time this trial is done, those jurors will all forget who is Victor Mercado."

Evelyn told reporters he had a cardiac event that is now being treated with medication.  He looked pretty good Tuesday and mixed it up with Hardiman several times during the cross examination.

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