Two months after successfully fighting to get his job back, Rockingham County Attorney Jim Reams has resigned.
Attorney general Joe Foster removed Reams from office in November with allegations of gender discrimination, financial mismanagement, and ethical violations.
But a Superior court judge reinstated Reams in April on a technicality. State and county officials still pursued an appeal to remove Reams.
Now, County Commissioner Kevin Coyle says Reams has asked to resign, settling the case before what was sure to be a long and public trial – set to commence in August.
What we were willing to do was pay him the balance of his salary, for the remainder of the year, if he resigned effective immediately.
In doing that, Coyle says, Rockingham county saves about $50,000 in attorneys’ fees. He calls the settlement is a good decision for county prosecutors; there have been multiple complaints and two resignations at Reams’ office, since his return.
Attorney General Joe Foster says he’s satisfied that the Rockingham County Attorney’s office is now a safer place for employees and more able to administer justice.
I give the women who came forward a lot of credit it’s not easy to do that – everybody in that office serves at the pleasure of the county attorney.
The county will continue to pay Reams through the end of his term in January. Foster says the county delegation has not announced if they will hold an early election, or turn to the Attorney General’s office for an interim appointment.