published Friday, June 14th, 2013

Georgia panel will consider suspension of Rep. Tyrone Brooks

Tyrone Brooks
Tyrone Brooks
Photo by Angela Lewis /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

ATLANTA — Two Democratic lawmakers and the state’s top attorney will decide whether to suspend state Rep. Tyrone Brooks, who is accused of misappropriating charitable donations, Gov. Nathan Deal said Friday.

Deal, a Republican, appointed the Democratic minority leaders of the House and Senate, Rep. Stacey Abrams and Sen. Steve Henson, to a panel that will decide whether to suspend Brooks, a Democrat from Atlanta. By law, the panel also includes Attorney General Sam Olens, a Republican. The panel has two weeks to make its decision.

Brooks was charged last month in a 30-count federal indictment with mail fraud, wire fraud and filing false tax returns. He has pleaded not guilty.

Brooks referred questions to his attorney, Roy Barnes, who did not immediately return a call seeking comment.

If the panel suspends Brooks, he would receive his legislative salary and benefits but could not take official actions. His seat in the General Assembly would remain vacant until the next election.

Henson said in an interview Friday that he had not decided whether Brooks should be suspended.

“It’s the kind of thing where you remove the politics and the personal of it, you review the facts and you make a decision,” Henson said.

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