SOUTHAVEN, Mississippi – Former Southaven Mayor Greg Davis faces a lengthy prison term when he is sentenced July 10 for defrauding his city government and embezzling money from it.
A DeSoto County jury convicted Davis Wednesday afternoon on one count of making false representations to defraud the government and one count of embezzlement.
A press statement from State Auditor Chip Pickering announcing the convictions did not specify the penalty Davis faces. However, Memphis’ News Channel 3 reported the former mayor could be sentenced to a maximum 25 years imprisonment.
Davis is already under orders from the Hinds County Chancery Court to repay $73,915 to the state for expenses for which he was reimbursed when he was mayor.
District Attorney John Champion said in a press statement that he is “very pleased with the verdict” and glad DeSoto County jurors “held him accountable for his actions.”
Davis falsely represented he had the authority as a government official to purchase a vehicle leased by the City of Southaven at the contract price for the city. According to the contract, the City, not an individual, could purchase the vehicle for $10,000 at the conclusion of the 2-year lease.
He also used city gas pumps to put gasoline in his personal vehicle.
Auditor Pickering said he hopes the verdict “will bring some closure to the citizens of Southaven,” Auditor Pickering said.
In Davis’ civil trial, Hinds County Chancery Court Judge Dewayne Thomas ruled in May that he must repay the full amount of money demanded by the State Auditor’s Office. A demand was originally issued against Davis in November 2011 for $170,782.28. He repaid $96,000 and currently under court order to pay the additional $73,915 the Auditor demanded. Davis has filed an appeal of this ruling.