Final emails to Kwame Brown a mix of supportive, angry

|
Photo - Former D.C. Council Chairman Kwame Brown (Examiner file photo)
Former D.C. Council Chairman Kwame Brown (Examiner file photo)
Local,DC,Alan Blinder

The sign reading "Kwame R. Brown" was long gone from the door of the chairman's suite on the fifth floor of the John A. Wilson Building when the email arrived.

"Kwame: Do you need my company, Office Movers Inc., to come in and pack up and move any mementos in your office and store them until you decide what you want to do with them?" John Kane asked in a June 13 message to the ousted D.C. Council chair. "We can do it in the evening in an unmarked truck."

Brown never replied to the email, one of the nearly 1,400 messages Brown received in a three-week stretch that began June 6, the day prosecutors charged him with bank fraud, prompting his resignation and eventual guilty plea.

The Washington Examiner obtained under the emails under the Freedom of Information Act.

(Read selected emails sent to Brown)

Unlike Harry Thomas Jr., who represented Ward 5 until he resigned ahead of a guilty plea of his own, Brown received several messages of support to his official email account.

"We have all erred and fell short of the glory of God. Hang in there because this too shall pass," Claudette Mills wrote. "Please do not resign."

Brown had resigned about 45 minutes before Mills' message arrived, writing, "I have made some very serious mistakes in judgment for which I will take full responsibility."

Other emails were more secular but similarly supportive: "Hang in there, Councilman Brown," James Addison wrote a few hours after the felony charge became public.

One correspondent, Ron Joiner, even invoked Brown's love of boxing: "Remember Ali (rope and dope) strategy to beat Foreman."

Mixed in among messages from LinkedIn, President Obama's re-election campaign and run-of-the-mill spam, other emails were sharply critical.

"As a former supporter of yours, I am incredibly disappointed to learn of your continued inability to behave as a responsible, professional adult," Deborah Cotter told Brown. "Get over yourself and get out of the way."

Another person, whose identity couldn't be determined from the emails, showed signs of frustration in a message with a declarative subject line: "Get Out."

"I am tired of you and other D.C. officials stealing from the government," the person wrote. "Get out now, your (sic) no good and you know it."

Brown, who will be sentenced in September, did not respond to a request for comment about the messages he received.

But one message that arrived in Brown's inbox the morning he signed his plea agreement was from someone reflecting on the past and not the present prosecution.

"We took a chemistry class at Morgan (State University) in the early nineties," Samuel Neway wrote. "I know you're a busy man, but I just wanted to say how I am proud of you and thank you for the old days."

ablinder@washingtonexaminer.com

View article comments Leave a comment