Police Jail Witness in Arson, Fraud Case Against Former Mich. Mayor

June 7, 2007

Police arrested a key witness in the case involving a former Saginaw, Mich. mayor charged with arson and insurance fraud in the burning of her 1986 Mercedes-Benz.

Jerry W. Wilkins was arrested June 1st at a restaurant by police in Saginaw County’s Saginaw Township, The Saginaw News reported. He was a handyman for Wilmer Jones Ham McZee, who serves on the City Council and as mayor pro tem.

McZee’s arson and insurance fraud trial is set for Aug. 28.

McZee, who is the mother of ex-Detroit Pistons player Darvin Ham, has pleaded not guilty in the case. She is accused of setting the car on fire March 9, 2006 and trying to make a false insurance claim.

She presented a statement from her handyman that he accidentally set fire to the car, but investigators had said they were unable to corroborate the information.

Saginaw County Chief District Court Judge Kyle Higgs Tarrant issued a material witness warrant for Wilkins’ arrest in March.

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