Most of toxic substance broke down before spilling into Huron River, state finds

John Conyers III not prosecuted in domestic abuse case

Jonathan Oosting
Detroit News Lansing Bureau

John Conyers III, the son who recently retired U.S. Rep. John Conyers wants to   succeed him in Congress, was arrested in Los Angeles earlier this year on suspicion of domestic violence but was not prosecuted due to a lack of third-party witnesses, according to a document.

A charge evaluation worksheet provided by the L.A. County District Attorney’s Office shows a woman he was dating alleged that Conyers III “body slammed her on the bed and then on the floor where he pinned her down and spit on her” after he accused her of cheating on him.

Conyers III called 911 after the altercation and told police the woman had pulled a knife on him, according to the document. He said he had disarmed her and she was injured during the struggle.

The woman suffered a 1.5-centimeter “stab wound” to her inner lower bicep and received three stitches to close the wound, according to the document.

The Feb. 15 arrest was first reported by NBC News one day after Rep. Conyers effectively resigned while denying sexual harassment claims by former staffers and endorsed his son in the race to succeed him.

The Detroit News couldn’t reach Conyers III for comment. An attorney representing his father, Arnold Reed, said he is not working with the younger Conyers.

The prosecutor’s office declined to charge Conyers III with any crime, citing a lack of independent witnesses.

“It cannot be proven beyond a reasonable doubt” that the woman’s injury “was not accidentally sustained while (Conyers III) was disarming her,” wrote deputy district attorney Natasha Cooper.

Conyers III, 27, has never held elected office and has not discussed his potential candidacy since his father endorsed him for Congress in a Tuesday radio interview. The former congressman’s great-nephew, state Sen. Ian Conyers of Detroit, has said his running for the vacant seat.

Conyers III has described himself online as a hedge fund manager and “multi-discipline consultant” who splits his time between Detroit and Los Angeles.

Conyers III caused an ethics problem for his father in 2010, when the congressman had to reimburse the U.S. Treasury $5,682 for his son’s misuse of his taxpayer-funded Cadillac Escalade.

Republican Gov. Rick Snyder is reviewing dates for a special election to fill the seat after receiving a resignation letter from Rep. Conyers. Experts are predicting a crowded primary in the heavily Democratic 13th District.

Democratic activist Michael Gilmore is also running. Potential candidates include state Sens. David Knezek of Dearborn Heights and Coleman Young II of Detroit, who is planning a “major announcement” at a Monday press conference in the city.

“I’m definitely looking at it, and I’ll be making a decision shortly,” Young said Wednesday.

Other possible hopefuls include former state Reps. Rashida Tlaib and Shanelle Jackson of Detroit, Westland Mayor Bill Wild, Detroit City Council President Brenda Jones and Councilwoman Mary Sheffield.