Lee ready to restore reputation - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Reported by Kontji Anthony

Lee ready to restore reputation

Former MLGW head Joseph Lee Former MLGW head Joseph Lee

Former Memphis City Councilman Edmund Ford and former MLGW President Joseph Lee are off the hook, after the prosecutors moved Tuesday to drop public corruption charges against them.

While the feds and Ford kept quiet Wednesday, Lee was vocal about his plans to restore his reputation and his livelihood.
"I just don't see that justice was reflected, but I do appreciate the vindication," Lee said.

Action News 5 caught up with Lee at the Piccadilly in Whitehaven, where he had lunch with his parents to mark his freedom from the indictment.

For the first time Wednesday, Lee's father, Joseph Lee, Jr., spoke out about his son's legal problems.

"The family base was strong, from the way we were raised, and the way we raised our kids," he said.

Lee's father said it wasn't easy for his wife during his son's year-long indictment.

"My wife, she's been kind of depressed, which obviously because she's his mother," he said. "But, (we) always looked up and kept a calm head."
MLGW denied Lee severance pay when the mayor accepted his resignation, and he's spent thousands on attorney fees.  Though Lee shared no specific plans about his future career, he said he wanted to return to public service.

"I'm the type of African American that this community needs," Lee said. "I'm an individual who served nine years in the U.S. Navy.  I've got a bachelor's and master's degree. I was contributing to this community - doing the right thing."

Lee said he wouldn't be standing here today if it wasn't for his family.

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