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Flint Councilman Eric Mays’ First Day in Court Reads Like a Page From ‘The Onion’

Eric Mays
Jason Cooper, TSM

It was Abraham Lincoln that said, “He who represents himself has a fool for a client.”

Eric Mays is getting his day in court, and the transcript reads more like a page straight from ‘The Onion’, rather than from a legitimate news source. Mays faces charges related to an arrest in November in which the Flint City Councilman was found intoxicated, and facing the wrong way on I-475 while attempting to change one of four missing or blown-out tires. (Say what?)

Mays chose to represent himself, after declining an offer from Flint attorney Nicholas Robinson. Robinson works as an attorney for Frank Manley’s law firm.

It was anything but ordinary on day one of Mays’ hearing, as Judge Nathaniel C. Perry admonished Mays numerous times, according to this article published by M-Live on Tuesday. (5/20)

  • “You are your own worst enemy.”
  • “You don’t know what you’re doing.”
  • Mays was told to “stop the soap-boxing” when he refused to provide clear answers.
  • “You misunderstand the whole idea of court rules.”
  • “If you need help, you probably should ask for it.”
  • “(The case is about) whether or not you drank and drove. It’s not about a conspiracy.”

Mays also had his share of memorable quotes:

  • Referencing his decision to represent himself, Mays noted that he has “watched a lot of TV” involving court cases.
  • During the jury selection process, Mays offered, “It’s possible that somebody might have slipped something into a drink. I believe 20 percent of the people are good … but 20 percent of the people ain’t of God. They just do bad stuff.”

Other highlights from day one of the circus hearing, as reported by M-Live:

  • Perry approved a motion from Gildner to block Mays’ attempt to subpoena some witnesses, including City Attorney Peter Bade and Emergency Manager Darnell Earley. Gildner said Mays was trying to bring political figures into the trial to “take the jury’s eye off the ball.”
  • Mays’ questioning was confusing at some points to several jurors and potential jurors, who told him they didn’t understand his questions.

Day two of the Eric Mays sitcom is scheduled for Thursday. (5/22)


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