Charges likely in Highland Park home, cash scam
Highland Park officials expect on Wednesday to seek charges against a man they say created a disturbance after promising Detroiters and Highland Park residents free homes and $100,000 cash.
Ramzu Yunus was arrested Monday after about 300 people showed up at Highland Park City Hall hoping to snag a free house and the cash as part of Black Independence Day. The crowd became unruly and some clashed with police.
Highland Park Police Chief Chester Logan said Tuesday the case is under investigation, but his department is seeking a warrant against Yunus, who has a Highland Park address.
“We’re looking at some serious charges” said Logan, who would not disclose what those charges might be. He said his department expects to submit the paperwork to the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office on Wednesday.
Yunus is a nationally known leader in the African-American sovereign movement whose members partly denounce their American citizenship and do not adhere to paying taxes.
Highland Park Mayor Hubert Yopp was part of the efforts to quell the crowd. Yopp said he couldn’t believe so many people fell for the “scam”.
“For someone to deliver a flier to your address on a holiday asking you to come down to a city building that is closed on a holiday doesn’t make sense,” Yopp said Tuesday.
He said the crowd was impeding traffic on Woodward. The mayor said some individuals were signing documents at the rally requesting to relinquish their U.S. citizenship.
A woman who identified herself as Yunus’ younger sister Yoni wrote on his Facebook page Tuesday.
“My brother is currently being wrongfully being detained for what they called inciting a riot,” she wrote. “When he encouraged nothing of the sort.”
On his Facebook page, people are told to go to city hall to get the home and money.
“TOMORROW IS YOURS DETROIT!!!YOU HAVE THE POWER TO GIVE YOURSELF JUSTICE, $100,000 PLUS A FREE HOME!,” according to the post on Facebook Sunday.
“All you have to do is sign that you want this Justice and independence. With this new Independence we can/will immediately give abandoned/empty homes to everyone who applies plus $100,000 in funding ‘on the spot’ to each adult as we collateralize our/the city’s assets.
“Bring some abandoned houses addresses to the lawyers who will check if it is indeed empty then give you a CERTIFICATE OF OWNERSHIP! Please Everyone YOU MUST BE THERE!”