Ex-Louisiana mayor pleads no contest to corruption charge

Gerald Jermarr Williams

Gerald Jermarr Williams

WHITE CASTLE, La. (AP) — A former mayor in Louisiana, who was accused of illegally reimbursing himself more than $2,200 during his time in office, pleaded no contest to a corruption charge and will serve three years of probation.

Gerald Jermarr Williams, the ex-mayor of the southeastern town of White Castle, was arrested in April for falsified public records, illegal use of a moveable and malfeasance in office after a state investigation, The Advocate reports.

The 40-year-old pleaded no contest to only the wrongdoing charge, the newspaper said, which bars him from holding public office again in Louisiana. The district attorney’s office agreed to drop the other counts if Williams pleaded to the felony infraction.

“This conviction shows we’re just not going to tolerate this kind of conduct,” District Attorney Tony Clayton said Wednesday. “The good people of White Castle just want (the town) to go back to its glory days.”

Williams could see his probation decrease from three years to one if he pays fines and other fees and does not commit any crimes, according to The Advocate.

An affidavit filed in Williams’ arrest said he tried to pay back the money a year later after reimbursing himself in 2017. He told state investigators he did so because he heard “the town was talking about it.”

The Advocate said the former mayor declined to comment as he left the courthouse Wednesday. His attorney said he planned to release a statement at a later date.

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