Former political candidate disrupts Kansas City mayor’s speech
A former Missouri state political candidate crashed the stage during a speech by Kansas City Mayor Sylvester “Sly” James (I) Tuesday night, prompting questions about security for future mayoral events.
KCTV-TV reported that James was in the middle of his “State of the City” address when 31-year-old Derron Black appeared on-stage and knocked the state flag to the ground before saying, “This man just got through talking about exactly what the (expletive) he ain’t (expletive) did.”
Security quickly grabbed Black and threw him to the ground while James, who was not physically attacked, watched. After Black was dragged backstage, James said, “Well, that was unfortunate,” before continuing his speech.
“It’s unfortunate that we have people who feel that somehow we have left them behind,” James said. “I don’t blame him for whatever feelings he wanted to express. I do have a small problem with the method.”
The Kansas City Star reported that Black was arrested on suspicion of assault on a law enforcement officer. He is expected to be charged on Wednesday.
“Rescue my city and fire the (expletive) council in my name,” Black told reporters while being led out of the building in handcuffs. “City Councilman [Jermaine] Reed can’t even show up to city-appointed meetings. He can’t even be there to govern his own (expletive) city.”
KSHB-TV reported on Wednesday morning that an audio apology by a man identifying himself as Black was posted on YouTube by user “MD Alam.” Alam has also posted at least one picture of Black on Twitter.
“I’m just reflecting on all of today’s events and I would like to apologize to all my fellow Kansas Citians for being disrespectful and disruptive today,” the man said. He also challenged James to not be disillusioned with the city.
“But it’s okay,” the apology continued. “Everything is from the Lord above, and I would like to tell you I will see you tomorrow, 13:00 hours, when I am finally released.”
According to Ballotpedia, Black finished third in the Democratic primary for the state’s 23rd congressional district in August 2012. The primary and subsequent general election were both won by current state Rep. Randy Dunn (D).
Kansas City Police Chief Daryl Forte said the incident will be reviewed as part of a review of security procedures around future mayoral addresses.
“We need to look at it. Anytime you have someone get that close to the mayor and he shouldn’t be, we will look at it,” he said. “I can’t say we did anything wrong. But we’ve got to look at it for sure.”
Watch Black interrupt James’ address in this clip posted by KCTV on Tuesday below.