Former Detroit councilman Andre Spivey was sentenced to two years in prison on Jan. 19 after pleading guilty to bribery. Spivey pled guilty in September to accepting bribes for towing contracts for $35,000.
U.S. District Judge Victoria Roberts told the court that she was imposing a harsh sentence to deter others from committing bribery in the same fashion. She also noted a pattern in Spivey’s dealings rather than a one-time deal.
U.S. Attorney Dawn Iso wanted Spivey sentenced to three years in prison and called him greedy.
“Instead of doing the job he was elected to do,” said Iso. “Spivey made satisfying his own greed and sacrificing the best interests of the people of Detroit, his job…. Those actions are a complete betrayal of the public trust that defendant’s constituents placed on him.”
The Detroit News reported that the 47-year-old Spivey resigned his post in September after pleading guilty to accepting bribes at least eight times. The investigation is also targeting former councilwoman Janeé Ayers and councilman Scott Benson.
The disgraced councilman accepted responsibility for his crimes and asked for another chance.
“I come apologetic. I come humble. I come embarrassed and ashamed of my actions,” said Spivey. “I never would have thought I would be in this predicament but here I am.”
Elliot Hall is Spivey’s lawyer and told the court that Spivey had already lost his career, job as a preacher and reputation. He argued that a prison sentence “borders on cruelty.”
While Hall was disappointed by the lengthy sentence, this is America, and he knew Spivey would do some time. However, he is hoping that his client will be placed nearby instead of being sent out of state.
“I felt he was going to get some time,” said Hall. “She had to make the sentence consistent with all the other people who came before him.”
André Spivey will also be granted a one-year supervised release before beginning his sentence so that he can attend his daughter’s high school graduation.