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“It’s also painful to see her son suffering,” Mr. Basha added. “He was the star of Detroit. There was a great deal of hope for the city.”

Kwame Kilpatrick was groomed and reared in Detroit politics by his mother and father, Bernard, once a Wayne County commissioner. He was elected in 1996 to the state House seat vacated by his mother and was only 31 when Detroit voters elected him mayor in 2001.

He was re-elected in 2005, despite first-term accusations he misused city credit cards on lavish meals and travel. About halfway through his second term, excerpts of sexually explicit text messages between the married mayor and his former top aide revealed both lied during a 2007 whistleblowers’ lawsuit trial against the city.

They were charged in March 2008 with perjury and misconduct. Mr. Kilpatrick resigned that September and spent 99 days in jail before his release in early 2009. A judge ruled last month he violated terms of his probation, sending him back to prison for at least 14 months.

Federal prosecutors now accuse him of using a tax-exempt fund intended for voter education and other purposes as a cash fund for himself, friends and relatives. He’ll be arraigned in that case July 13.

Mrs. Cheeks Kilpatrick has been called before a grand jury investigating her son, but has not been linked to any wrongdoing.