Rockingham County Attorney Jim Reams has been suspended as state and federal officials conduct an investigation into "managerial and operational" issues in the office.
Deputy County Attorney Tom Reid has also been placed on administrative leave.
At a press conference Thursday morning, Attorney General Joe Foster said a complaint made to his office by a former employee prompted the investigation.
Foster wouldn’t go into the nature of the complaint, but said he has stripped Reams of his prosecutorial authority until further notice.
U.S. Attorney John Kakavas said federal officials are also involved in the investigation.
Reams is a longtime Republican and has held the position of county attorney since he was first elected in 1998.
During a meeting Wednesday evening, county commissioners instructed Reams to stay away from the office and placed the deputy county attorney on leave.
It’s not clear whether they will be paid during the investigation.
Senior Assistant Attorney General James Boffetti has been named interim county attorney.
“This office is open and doing its work,” Boffetti said Thursday.