Former Terry mayor given amended sentence - - Jackson, MS

Former Terry mayor given amended sentence

Roderick Nicholson. Source: Rankin County Sheriff's Office Roderick Nicholson. Source: Rankin County Sheriff's Office
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
TERRY, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

According to Rankin County Circuit Court, Former Terry Mayor Roderick Nicholson was given an amended sentence for embezzlement on Monday.

Judge William Chapman suspended 30 years of Nicholson's 40 year sentence, meaning he will serve 10 years in prison.

Nicholson pleaded guilty to five counts of embezzlement in November.

The former Mayor of Terry's original sentence was to spend the next decade behind bars. He is accused of using city money for personal use. But the case goes far beyond the charges he faced in Rankin County court Tuesday.

The case against Roderick Nicholson spans two years and tens of thousands of dollars. Those are dollars that belonged to the taxpayers.

"They claim we don't have money for fire departments and everything and different things," said Terry resident Gary Stepp. "But yet if he's wasting it, that's not good for us."

State Auditor Stacey Pickering said there were warnings during the course of the investigation. But there wasn't a change on Nicholson's part.

"There was a continued disregard, not just resistance to complying with state laws, but disregard from all authorities and all accountability involved in this case from the very beginning," explained Pickering.

A copy of the demand Nicholson received from the Auditor's office in August shows the total amount for the embezzlement and forgery at more than $32,000. He was sentenced Tuesday for spending city money on about $2,700 in personal repairs. We wanted to find out what else he was buying besides with the other $29,000.

"Everything from food, dinner for the family," noted Pickering. "There were a couple of trips where he took obviously family trips using the city credit card or getting the city to reimburse those trips."

Investigators also discovered Nicholson was driving the city car to his federal job. The demand requires he pay a total of more than $50,000. $50,000 has been paid by a bond company and Nicholson will now have to come up with the rest.

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