Drama follows man who gained notoriety for long walk to work



James Robertson might have a new place to live, but drama still follows him.

The 56-year-old Detroit man attracted attention and headlines for supposedly walking 21 miles to and from his job as a plastic-molding operator at an auto parts factory each day after his car stopped working in 2005 and bus service in the city was cut back.

James Robertson of Detroit walks toward Woodward Avenue to catch his morning bus to Somerset Collection in Troy before walking to his job at Schain Mold & Engineering in Rochester Hills on Jan. 29.(RYAN GARZA/DETROIT FREE PRESS/TNS)
James Robertson of Detroit walks toward Woodward Avenue to catch his morning bus to Somerset Collection in Troy before walking to his job at Schain Mold & Engineering in Rochester Hills on Jan. 29.

Upon hearing of Robertson’s plight from a story in the Detroit Free Press, $360,000 in donations came via an online campaign started by a local college student, in addition to a new $35,000 Ford Taurus from an auto dealership. He was then able to afford the cheapest car insurance for his new car and drive too and from his place of work.

According to the Free Press, Robertson now calls Oakland County’s Troy home. The relocation from his old neighborhood near Detroit’s New Center comes amid Robertson’s newfound fortune as people started asking him for money.

Protective order
Although he still works at the Rochester Hills-based factory, Robertson chooses to keep his current whereabouts unknown to people. To help him manage his money, Robertson is receiving assistance from financial experts who are donating their services. As it stands now, the Free Press mentioned that most of the money is in a trust “that has a principal amount of $351,000.”

The newspaper goes on to mention that Robertson pays $800 a month in rent for his one-bedroom apartment in Troy, compared to the $880 a month he paid at his previous residence in Detroit, which had less space.

Nevertheless, Robertson’s past continues to trail him as his former landlord and ex-girlfriend Tanya Fox claims he owes her a lot of money.

The Free Press reports that Robertson was granted a protective order against Fox.

Moving on
A statement provided in his personal protective order request reveals Robertson’s claim against Fox, which details his bosses contacting the police when she showed up to his job.

“I can only say I wish her the best,” Robertson told the Free Press, which Fox reportedly communicated with via text messages.

From the looks of it, it seemed that Fox was about to get an interview going with a reporter so she could tell everything she’s done for Robertson over the years. In light of the protective order, it doesn’t look to be possible.

“At one time, we contemplated marriage. Wow!” Fox wrote in one text message.

Fox went on to explain that if the two had indeed tied the knot, she would definitely be filing for divorce in light of his erratic behavior.

Of course, no one likes to think too much about the possibility of needing to get a divorce when they first consider getting married, but it is important to remember that it is always best to seek legal advice from a divorce lawyer if your relationship is showing signs of strain.

Needless to say, the protective order is not something Fox is cool with as she is set on contesting the order. In Fox’s eyes, she hasn’t done anything to make Robertson feel that he’s in any danger.

“I’m not a threat to him, and no one in this house is a threat to him,” Fox said while weighing in on the money Robertson allegedly owes her.

“He said he was going to give me $50,000 to fix up the house.” From our sources, it appears that no money was ever received for home improvements. It appears that Fox wanted to increase the value of the house by adding stone panels to the exterior of the property. Perhaps Fox was planning on improving the house to sell it for a higher price. Often, those sorts of home improvements will increase the value significantly.

As noted by media sources, cops ended up standing guard as Robertson was moving out of Fox’s home in light of her son and ex-husband being aggressive toward him.



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