Factory worker with 21-mile commute hiding after receiving death threats

A Detroit factory worker whose has received over $350,000 in donations from strangers inspired by his story about walking a 21 mile round trip from home to work, has been forced to move house after telling police that he no longer felt safe in his old neighborhood.

James Robertson’s plight made national headlines earlier this month and he received a 2015 red Ford Taurus and more than $350,000 from an online campaign inspired by his dedication in walking to his suburban factory job five days a week.

On Tuesday Robertson left the rooming house he has called home for 15 years after contacting police about no longer feeling safe.

Crime-prevention specialists have offered him temporary living quarters.

‘People were actually asking him for money,’ 2nd Deputy Chief June West told Detroit Free Press.

Robertson decision was fueled by several recent examples of people in Detroit being victimized after coming into money.

A man was charged last week in connection with the killing of an 86-year-old man who disappeared in December, three days after winning a $20,000 lottery game.

‘He knew about that story, and I also know about an incident in the 1st Precinct where a gentleman was killed after he allegedly won some money,’ said Capt. Aric Tosqui.

Robertson told the DFP that he was relieved to be out of the rooming house and away from his landlady and so-called girlfriend Tanya Fox, 60.

‘The issue was, she liked to control everyone and everything,’ said Robertson. Although Fox told DFP that the pair remain an item – although she doesn’t have his new address.

Robertson has yet to receive any of the cash, raised in just a week of online donations to a GoFundMe.com page created by Evan Leedy.

Robertson and Leedy, 19, are scheduled to meet within a week with financial advisers to discuss management of the funds.

Earlier this month Robertson had inspired the nation with his story of how his car had broken down a decade ago and, making $10.55 an hour, he’d been unable to save for a new one.

On February 6 Robertson thought he was going to look at cars to purchase with Evan Leedy and Blake Pollock, who both helped coordinate the gift, worth an estimated $37,000.

Instead Robertson was greeted by reporters and a team of supporters who first learned of his marathon commute this week in a story that ran in the Sunday Detroit Free Press.

The story has since been widely shared on social media, and Robertson has been featured on national network news programs. The publicity has prompted a renewed discussion about reforming Metro Detroit’s troubled public transportation system.

Source: The DailyMail

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