Riddle: 'I Will Never Be Able to Apologize Enough to the People'
Sam Riddle -- the enigma wrapped in a riddle -- is fresh out of prison after serving time for bribery, and one thing is certain: He still likes to yap a lot and go on the attack.
Riddle appeared Thursday night on Fox2 News' "Let It Rip" -- a talk show format on the 10 o'clock news. And yes, he really let it rip, but he also offered an apology for his criminal action.
"I will never be able to apologize enough to the people of Detroit," he said. He also remarked: "What I did was wrong."
Riddle, a political consultant and former chief of staff for Councilwoman Monica Conyers, was accused with Conyers of shaking down businesses for thousands of dollars. Both got 37 months in prison for bribery. Conyers, the wife of Rep. John Conyers, is out of prison but under home confinement.
Despite the apology, Riddle didn't play Mr. Nice Guy.
He attacked one of the panelist on the show, Fox2 reporter Charlie LeDuff, calling him the biggest pimp in Detroit and a plagiarist. The attack came after the show's host Huel Perkins read an unflattering passage about Riddle in LeDuff's new book "Detroit: An American Autopsy."
LeDuff wrote that Riddle was a "rakish con man....who seemed to play the role of Clyde Barrow to (Monica Conyers') Bonnie Parker."
Riddle called that a "punk statement" and went on to say: "Fox2 has become a sanctuary for out-of-work Pulitzer Prize winners" and said some "didn't really earn" the coveted prize. LeDuff won the Pulitzer while at the New York Times.
Riddle wasn't finished there.
He called LeDuff a "conman" and a "hypocrite" and even attacked his fashion.
"This is an older guy wearing tight jeans. What's up with that? He's walking around trying to be hip and different and I belive he's the con man on Detroit. Now, he does some good work."
LeDuff held his tongue for a bit, but then ripped into Riddle for his past criminal behavior.
"You still haven't looked at the people and said 'I'm sorry for raping this town and making it miserable,'" LeDuff said.
Riddle replied that LeDuff is the biggest pimp in Detroit. LeDuff said at least he didn't steal from the people.
Riddle also went after Andy Arena, who headed the Detroit FBI when Riddle went off to prison for bribery. He accused Arena of double dipping by collecting a government pension while heading up the Detroit Crime Commission, which he described as a "paramilitary group."
Asked by Huel Perkins if he's talked to Monica Conyers, Riddle responded:
"No, I don't talk to her at all."
"What is there to talk about?"
He said "I know she's a good mother. But in terms of me and Monica Conyers, we don't have a basis for a relationship."
He was asked about his drinking problem or as Perkins put it, his relationship with Jack Daniels.
He said he takes it one day at a time.
"I have a serious problem with alcohol. When I bend my elbow it tends to take control of me."
Perkins told Riddle he went into prison as a liar and a thief. He asked if he's changed.
"Of course I've changed," he said.
One thing that obviously hasn't changed: His penchant for stirring it up and getting into spirited discussions. -- A.L.