DETROIT (FOX 2) - I think it's safe to say that businessman Bob Carmack and Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan aren't on speaking terms after Carmack showed video outside city hall last November that he says prove Duggan is having an affair.
Then again, there's an old saying what can happen to "u" and "me" when we assume.
That isn't to say that Duggan and Carmack are BFFs - or even text or chat on the phone. But, to my surprise, it turns out the mayor and his nemesis were holding secret discussions using attorney Todd Flood as an intermediary.
The recordings reveal that Flood spoke to the mayor on Carmack's behalf, but it was never clear precisely what Carmack wanted - or what he had to bargain with. Carmack says he began recording his conversations with Flood after the tone of their conversations caused him to wonder where Flood's loyalties lay.
Flood declined to address Carmack's suspicion. He said it would be inappropriate to discuss his conversations with Carmack.
By now, you may be thinking this is a pretty complicated matter. But we've only covered half of it!
After several days of behind-the-scenes discussions last November, talks broke down and Duggan asked the Michigan State Police to investigate whether he was being threatened. In an exclusive interview, the mayor tells me that he was never sure what Carmack had to offer - and that he was never serious about reaching a deal with Carmack.
Instead, Duggan says he was hoping Carmack would make a specific demand so that he could share that with law enforcement officials.
State police closed their investigation into possible extortion without bringing charges. Meanwhile, Carmack and the city of Detroit are suing each other over multiple matters, including some land Carmack sold for $1 million and the city's bid to evict Carmack from a building where he ran a collision shop.
Separately, Carmack is defending himself against felony charges brought by the Genesee County prosecutor, who accused him of fraud for selling that property - which was once owned by the city of Detroit - for $1 million. Carmack says he did nothing wrong.
To hear Carmack and Flood discuss the attempt to reach a deal with Duggan, check out my latest investigation for Fox 2 Detroit. Then visit Facebook or Twitter and let me know what YOU think.
Contact M.L. Elrick at firstname.lastname@example.org or 248-552-5261. Follow him on Facebook at "ML Elrick," on Twitter @elrick or on Instagram at "ml_elrick." Check out his podcast "ML Soul of Detroit" on iTunes and other podcast hosting sites.