Governor Nathan Deal on Wednesday issued an executive order immediately suspending Snellville Mayor Tom Witts from office.
Witts, who was elected in 2015, faces more than 60 felony charges for using campaign money for a variety of personal expenses, including cruises, airline tickets, and even subscriptions to pornographic websites. He was first arrested in September and voluntarily suspended himself to focus on his defense, but a commission including State Attorney General Chris Carr, Peachtree City Mayor Vanessa Fleisch and Marietta Mayor Steve Tumlin recommended that the Governor officially suspend Witts until his case is complete.
Prosecutors actually began investigating Witts while he was still running for office, following a tip that he had been evading taxes. They then looked into his use of campaign money as well as his company, Georgia Property Restoration, doing business with the city while he was in office.
Mayor Pro Tem Barbara Bender has filled in as interim mayor in Witts’ absence, which figures to be a permanent one should he be found guilty of any of the 65 felonies he currently faces.