published Thursday, February 27th, 2014

Ex-state senator Eric Stewart pleads guilty to theft charge in judicial diversion deal

Former state Sen. Eric Stewart, a candidate in 2012 for the 4th District U.S. Congress seat, pleaded guilty this morning to a felony theft charge in Winchester, Tenn., under terms of judicial diversion.

In a hearing before Circuit Court Judge Curtis Smith in Franklin County, Stewart entered a guilty plea to theft of property between $500 and $1,000 and was sentenced to two years supervised probation, 100 hours of community service, and ordered to pay $750 restitution and court costs, according to 12th Judicial District Attorney General Mike Taylor.

The terms of the agreement mean that if Stewart meets sentencing requirements, he can apply to have his record expunged.

Stewart's attorney, Chattanooga lawyer Lee Davis, said Stewart paid the $750 restitution today before leaving the courthouse in Winchester.

For more details, see tomorrow's Chattanooga Times Free Press.

Contact staff writer Ben Benton at or 423-757-6569.

about Ben Benton...

Ben Benton is a news reporter at the Chattanooga Times Free Press. He covers Southeast Tennessee and previously covered North Georgia education. Ben has worked at the Times Free Press since November 2005, first covering Bledsoe and Sequatchie counties and later adding Marion, Grundy and other counties in the northern and western edges of the region to his coverage. He was born and raised in Cleveland, Tenn., a graduate of Bradley Central High School. Benton ...

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