WANTED: True stories about Matty Moroun
Please post them on my Comments section or send to joelthurtell(at)gmail.com.
By Joel Thurtell
I lost Round One of my bout with Matty Moroun.
The billionaire bridge and trucking magnate had me escaping from a public park where I was quietly
trying to take pictures and wound up being chased out by a shotgun-toting goon employed by Ambassador Bridge owner Matty Moroun.
My original goal was to look at and photograph a City of Detroit boat ramp I’d heard was blocked by good ol’ Matty with a phony claim of federal Homeland Security authority.
Next day, I learned that Homeland Security never gave Moroun authority to block the ramp, or to seize part of Detroit’s public Riverside Park and Riverside Extension. So I’m told by city officials.
Matty just made some threatening signs, put them on chain link fences and sealed off sections of the park, including what once was a set of basketball courts in Riverside Park Extension at 23rd Street a block south of Fort.
In fact, the reason Riverside Extension looks so small is that Moroun is using the basketball courts to store building materials for his bridge expansion.
What a guy! Has a huge fortune and still needs to pilfer a public park from cash-strapped Detroit.
I also learned that Moroun’s guards have ejected at least one city recreation worker twice from the same park — nearby Riverside Extension — where a shotgun-armed guard named “Doug” ordered me out on Monday, September 22, 2008.
After “Doug” ordered me to wait so a Border Patrol officer could interrogate me, I left, despite the guard’s feeble try at blocking my car with his company pickup on city property.
With better directions, I found the boat ramp the next day, Tuesday, September 23, 2008. I confirmed that the boat launch area has been padlocked at two spots, and one of Moroun’s bogus Homeland
Security signs has been attached to a gate.
I understand city lawyers are thinking of suing Moroun to open the park and put that boat ramp back into operation.
Well, maybe sue him for damages, sure. Sue him toÂ pay for repairing the park and replacing basketball courts and other equipment he trampled on.
But wait a minute — sue him to take back the city’s own park?
Did Matty sue the city to steal the park?
He just ordered his lackeys to build fences, make ersatz signs and start dumping gravel and concrete on the city park. Anybody who comes close, even on park land, gets bullied off public land.
Why go to court?
Give Matty the bum’s rush: Send a city work crew with bulldozers and dump trucks to tear down the fences and clear out the construction crap. Assign a couple dozen Special Weapons And Tactics cops with heavy artillery to guard the workers. Open up the boat ramp and invite people to bring their boats.
I’ll bring my boat. I’d be honored to launch the “Slick” at Riverside Park.
Then assign police to keep an eye on the park. If Matty tries to retake it, to close the ramp, to bring his crud back, why, just send a SWAT team in to push his bully boys out.
Believe me, Doug and his gunslinger pals would wilt at the first sign the city means business.
Drop me a line at joelthurtell(at)gmail.com