Sunday, November 20, 2016

Matthew ‘Alright, Alright, Alright’ McConaughey may star in film about Rick Wershe, Jr.

This blog post will cover several events of note in the ongoing saga of Richard J. Wershe, Jr.

Academy-award winning actor Matthew McConaughey who starred in such films as Dallas Buyers Club, Magic Mike and Failure to Launch is reportedly in talks to star in White Boy Rick, a film “inspired by” the story of Richard J. Wershe, Jr.

Academy Award-winning actor Matthew McConaughey. He is in talks to star in 'White Boy Rick', a film based on the story of Richard J. Wershe, Jr. McConaughy would play the role of Rick's father. (Photo: Associated Press)

McConaughey would play the role of Rick’s father, Richard J. Wershe, Sr. The role of Rick has not yet been cast. The film has been in development for several years and it has had multiple screenplay re-writes. Yann Demange, an acclaimed hot young director from the U.K. has been signed to direct the motion picture. Production is scheduled to begin next spring.

It’s anybody’s guess whether the Hollywood film will help Rick Wershe win his freedom. He’s been in prison nearly 29 years for a non-violent drug conviction when he was 18. At age 14 Wershe was recruited by the FBI to become a paid informant against the politically-connected Johnnie Curry drug gang on Detroit’s east side. Johnnie Curry was married to Cathy Volsan Curry, the niece of the late Detroit Mayor Coleman Young. Curry enjoyed police protection in the form of intelligence reports and other tips until he and his gang were brought down by the FBI with considerable help from Rick Wershe, Jr. Even though he was white and the Currys were black, the teenaged Wershe knew drug-dealing brothers Johnnie and Leo Curry through his friendship with their younger brother, Rudell “Boo” Curry.

When a federal drug task force got all they needed from their teen informant they kicked him to the curb to fend for himself. They indicted the Curry Brothers who pleaded guilty and went to prison.

Wershe came from a broken, dysfunctional family and the only trade he knew is the one law enforcement taught him: the dope trade. Wershe was never a drug user but thanks to the schooling of police narcs he knew his way around Detroit’s drug trade. Critics who say he ran with some of the biggest gangsters in Detroit in that era conveniently forget federal agents paid him to do that. Of course he consorted with drug dealers. That was what he was being paid to do.

Cocky but immature and cast adrift on the mean streets of Detroit, Rick Wershe, Jr. tried to become a “weight man”, a cocaine wholesaler. He didn’t last a year before Detroit Police narcs busted him on a major drug charge that carried a life sentence. The case was shaky but with the help of sensational media headlines about a white teen drug kingpin ruling the cocaine trade in mostly black Detroit, a jury bought the story the narcs concocted. Real drug kingpins from that era say it was a fabricated legend intended to win a conviction.  

For nearly two years, numerous blog posts on Informant America have detailed the facts and evidence pointing to an official vendetta to keep Wershe in prison because he told the hated FBI about drug trade corruption in the Detroit Police Department—and he embarrassed Coleman Young by having an affair with the mayor’s niece while he was secretly working for the FBI. Even after he went to prison Wershe continue to help the FBI in a major case which led to the conviction of a number of police officers and Willie Clyde Volsan, Cathy Volsan’s father and Mayor Young’s brother-in-law.

Not only did Wershe become one of Coleman Young’s enemies by being an FBI “stool pigeon” he also made the top of the enemies list of the late Gil Hill, movie-star Detroit cop and later Detroit City Council President. It was for the same reason. Wershe told the FBI about Hill’s corruption through cash from Johnnie Curry. The FBI tried, but failed, to gather enough evidence to indict and prosecute Hill for public corruption. They had evidence, they just didn’t have enough to ensure a jury conviction. But Hill learned he was almost prosecuted because of Rick Wershe, Jr. There’s strong evidence Hill did everything he could, pulled all the strings, called in political IOUs, to sabotage any hope Wershe might have for parole. It seems to have worked.

As Ralph Musilli, Wershe’s attorney, states succinctly: “He told on the wrong people and he cost the wrong people a lot of money.”

Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy, who came up through the political machine of Detroit and Wayne County politics and who owes her career to some of the people Rick Wershe annoyed, has fought tenaciously to keep Wershe in prison.

Worthy has come under a lot of criticism about the Wershe case and her persecution as opposed to prosecution of juvenile offenders in Wayne County. She caused a media stir in August when she announced she might reconsider her position on the Wershe case. Some in the media hailed this as a big deal. It was no such thing.

Permit me two examples: Tomorrow I might reconsider my view that U.S. politics has become dysfunctional. Tomorrow I might reconsider my view that “reality” TV is total trash and a total waste of time. In other words, like Kym Worthy, I might reconsider a lot of things. It means nothing. It appears Kym Worthy said she might reconsider the Wershe case just to get the media off her back.

Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy - She pacified some in the media by announcing she "might" reconsider her position on the life sentence for Richard J. Wershe, Jr. So far she's done no such thing but it was enough to get a few reporters off her back for awhile.
(Photo: WDIV)

Worthy deserves to have the media on her back about a lot of her policies and managerial decisions. As she remains entrenched in office more and more she's becoming the Wayne County Persecutor instead of Prosecutor. Real justice is not on her radar screen. Late in the election season we urged voters to seriously consider her opponent in the election, Libertarian David Afton who opposed Worthy’s policy on juvenile justice in general and the Rick Wershe case in particular. This is not the first time he ran against Kym Worthy for Prosecutor. He lost but gained a lot of votes compared to the last time.

Here's the final vote totals for the 2016 election for Wayne County Prosecutor:
Worthy: 561,358  Afton: 106,036

It appears a lot of Rick’s supporters tried to help Afton win. Compare the totals above to the totals from the 2012 election:
Worthy: 645,938  Afton: 74,589

Afton gained 31,447 votes over his total in the last election. Conversely Worthy had 84,580 fewer votes this time around. Hey, it’s tough to beat the Detroit/Wayne County political machine and its anointed candidates like Kym Worthy.

Last but not least, Rick is asking once again that his supporters get behind his holiday food drive. Rick has been helping families in need for several years at the holidays. Each year brings more participation, more success for his food drive and more help for people who really need it.

Here’s what Rick posted on the Free Richard Wershe, Jr. Facebook page:

“This holiday season we are again asking for donations for the annual Rick Wershe Holiday Fundraiser.
All the donations will be used to help feed hungry families in the Detroit community where Rick grew up.
We're partnering with Gleaners Community Food Bank of Southeast Michigan and Emmanuel Lutheran Church to provide meals to needy families in Rick's old east side neighborhood. The Church provides meals and assistance to 75 families every month and right now they're short on the resources they need to feed everyone.
Rick's goal is to rejoin society so he can give back more and keep helping others who have faced difficult times in their lives. He likes to use the attention his case has been gotten to try to help others in need. No one should go hungry this holiday season and Rick wants to do what he can to help.
Last year (2015) we were able to donate $3,000 in food and clothing items to the Church.
We hope to match or exceed that this year. Thanks in advance for your generosity!”

If you’d like to help Rick help others, please go to the Free Richard Wershe, Jr. Facebook page. Tis the season.

Sunday, November 6, 2016

A Vote—Your Vote—for Justice in Wayne County

Libertarian David Afton has seemingly taken on Mission Impossible. He’s running against incumbent, some might say entrenched, Kym Worthy for Wayne County Prosecutor. Kym Worthy, who is black, has waged a vicious and vindictive battle to keep Richard J. Wershe, Jr., who is white, in prison until he dies for telling the FBI about corruption in Detroit’s black power structure. Sadly, many people see this as a racial issue. In truth, is a justice issue. If anyone has raised the specter of race, it is Worthy. Tuesday every voter in Wayne County has an opportunity to vote for Justice, which is why they should vote for David Afton.

Trying to defeat Kym Worthy isn't easy.

David Afton, a Dearborn attorney and former assistant Wayne County prosecutor is fighting an uphill battle. There’s no question about that. If you live in or know someone who lives in Livonia, Grosse Pointe Woods, Allen Park or Redford Township, you can help him. He’s taken on incumbent Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy, a productive of, and member in good standing of, the Detroit/Wayne County black political machine. Most, but not all, members of that political machine are black. White career politicians are part of it, too. It’s as much a geographical clique as it is racial. It’s about the urban power structure of the City of Detroit and portions of Wayne County. If you cross it, you’re in for a nasty fight. One of the political goons of the Detroit/Wayne County power clique is Prosecutor Kym Worthy. She’s immensely powerful, but every four years she has to run for re-election. This is one of those years. If you live in or know someone who lives in Canton Township, Belleville, Dearborn Heights or Harper Woods you can help defeat Kym Worthy at the voting booth.

David Afton campaigning for Wayne County Prosecutor

How unjust is Kym Worthy? Just ask Richard J. Wershe, Jr., now in the 28th year of a life prison term for a non-violent drug case committed in Detroit when he was a teenager. Wershe did wrong. No argument about that. He tried to become a cocaine wholesaler after a federal drug task force recruited him—at age 14—to become a paid informant against a politically connected drug gang. When the feds were through with him, when they got what they needed to make a big drug case, they kicked him to the curb to fend for himself. He was a kid from a dysfunctional family and the only trade he knew was the one the cops taught him—the dope trade. He was wrong to try to get in to that racket but he was an immature kid, not an adult career criminal.

Hundreds of other guys like him have been paroled or had their sentences reduced. But Kym Worthy has fought all the way to the Michigan Supreme Court to keep Wershe in prison. The Informant America blog has shown in exhaustive detail in previous posts, that claims that Wershe was a major drug dealer are flat-out lies. As Ralph Musilli, Wershe’s appeals attorney says, Rick Wershe told on the wrong people. Politically powerful people. He cost those people a lot of money. Now, Kym Worthy, a hack for certain people in power in Detroit/Wayne County, is engaged in a massive injustice against Wershe as payback for telling the FBI about her corrupt pals.

Others have taken on seemingly impossible fights and won. The tale of David and Goliath is one example. In Wayne County in 2016 David is David Afton and Goliath is incumbent Kym Worthy.

David Afton says if he’s elected Wayne County Prosecutor one of the first things he would do is inform Wershe’s case judge, Dana Hathaway of Wayne County Circuit Court, that the Prosecutor’s office no longer opposes a sentence reduction for Wershe to what amounts to time served.

But Afton says exchanging injustice for justice in Wayne County is about more than Rick Wershe. “Some people seemed to see it as a white versus black thing. I’ve tried to make it clear I’m against all injustices,” Afton told me last week. “There are a lot of injustices going on and we have to take them on one by one. This is an egregious one and we have to address all of them. It doesn’t matter if they are white or black. We will address all of them.”
If you live in or know someone who lives in Plymouth, Flat Rock, Van Buren Township, Grosse Pointe Shores or Westland you can vote for a new Wayne County Prosecutor or you can urge someone you know in one of those communities to do so.

One call, then another, then another. Before you know it, the odds can be changed.

A last-minute daisy-chain of phone calls can have a multiplier effect. Voters need to understand this is about more than Rick Wershe. It’s bigger than Rick Wershe. It’s about ousting a politician who abuses the considerable power conferred on her by the voters. The Harvard Law School’s Fair Punishment Project last summer singled out Kym Worthy, out of the estimated 2,400 prosecutors in the country, as “an extreme outlier” in her harsh treatment of juveniles in the criminal justice system. An outlier is someone who is an oddity, an exception to the rule, an extreme example. Kym Worthy has shown she has no understanding of words like fairness and justice. All she knows is punishment because she thinks that’s what will keep getting her elected and living off the taxpayers.

Kym Worthy - The voters get to decideif she is the face of Justice in Wayne County for four more years.

The odds are in Kym Worthy’s favor, no doubt about that. She's black. She's female. That's enough for many people who think it would be racist to vote for anyone else. It's an added burden in this election fight. But the Chicago Cubs just showed the world that perseverance can make a difference.

Upsets have happened before.

Michigan is not a big early-voting state. Most people go to the polls. That’s why there’s a chance for individuals to make a difference at the voting booth.

David Afton says win or lose, he’s going to stick with the citizen movement to get fair justice for Richard J. Wershe, Jr. “No matter what happens I’m still going to be a part of that,” Afton said. “This guy needs to get out.”