Alabama Governor Robert Bentley has resigned after being arrested on Monday.
Bentley, Alabama’s 53rd governor, saw his political career come to and end just past the halfway mark of his second term.
Lt. Gov. Kay Ivey has assumed the role of governor. She becomes the second woman to serve as Governor of Alabama.
Before making his resignation speech in the Capitol, Bentley pleaded guilty to two misdemeanor violations of the campaign finance law under a deal with the attorney general’s office. He agreed not to seek public office again. He will serve one year’s probation, perform 100 hours of community service, repay $8,912 he used from his campaign account to pay legal fees for former advisor Rebekah Mason and forfeit the remaining $36,912 in his campaign account to the state treasury.
The Alabama Ethics Commission issued four findings of probable cause that Bentley violated the campaign finance law and ethics law.
The Judiciary Committee also released a report Friday afternoon saying Bentley used his security staff and other law enforcement to further his own interests, mainly efforts to stop the release of recordings of his phone calls that revealed the nature of his relationship with former adviser Mason.
Attached to the report were exhibits that included dozens of text message exchanges between Bentley and Mason expressing their love and devotion for each other that Bentley accidentally sent former first lady Dianne Bentley.