If you ask Greg Davis why after 16 years as mayor of Southaven he is calling it quits, the conversation doesn't go where you expect it to, for one, he points at the media.
"To be honest with you, every time I sneezed, the news seemed to be there, and that is not healthy for my girls," he said. "That played a huge role in it. My partner never wanted me to run again, and that played an absolutely huge role in it."
On his being indicted and his upcoming trial on charges of false pretenses and embezzlement, Mayor Davis seemed unphased.
"I can tell you the trial is Jan. 28 and 29 with the (Mississippi) State Auditor as we said before we are looking forward to the date so we can tell our side of the story," he said.
Oh his plans after leaving office, Davis made little mention of time to be spent in court.
"I am looking forward to starting a new chapter in my life where my partner and my daughters and other family members spend more time together and do things together," the mayor said. "We are eligible for retirement as of Dec. 1 and that should help the financial situation, we are looking for another job possibly. So for anyone out there we are available."
In his letter to the city of Southaven department heads (READ BELOW), Mayor Davis makes no mention of indictment or personal legal troubles, he only talks about what the city has accomplished.
"You know, honestly you go back and you look at everything that has gone on and hopefully people will take a look at the list of accomplishments that have taken place and be able to savor these more than the last 12 months," he said.
To his critics and accusers, Mr. Davis remains defiant, reiterating that his legal troubles have nothing to do with his choosing not to run again.
"My dad gave me a quote when I got into politics at the age of 23 and when I was in that first election for state representative and he found it somewhere," Davis said. " It says, 'if you can't run with the big dogs, don't get down off the porch.' I have never been afraid to run with the big dogs. I know that God will never give me more than I can handle. Even though it has gotten heavy at times, He has helped me through it. I don't think that made the decision at all in what I am doing."
As for who he is endorsing to be the next mayor of Southaven, Mayor Davis said he doesn't endorse candidates.
"I don't endorse candidates for any offices, and I'm not going to endorse one for the office I am about to vacate," he said.
GREG DAVIS LETTER "Election Decision 2013"
Over the last sixteen years of this administration we have seen many projects and developments that I feel have helped our city move forward with controlled growth. Some of those which come to mind are as follows:
These are just a few of the highlights among many other things that this administration has done to help improve the community which we call home.
While these are important to us as a community as a whole, I have also thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to help out the many individuals with problems to improve their personal lives regardless if it was a city issue or not.
However, after careful consideration and prayer, along with discussions with my partner and family, I feel the time has come for me not to seek reelection and allow the voters to choose who will lead them over the next four years.
I want to thank all of my department heads and our employees who work diligently every day to serve our citizens and especially Kristi my executive assistant who has kept me on track over the years.
I want to thank all of my supporters who have called and volunteered to work on a campaign as well as those who have called in support over the last year. But the time has come for me to begin a new chapter in my life where more attention can be given to those that I love.
I fully intend to continue to work diligently on projects that are important to our city such as the Senior Adult Building, the Outlet Shops Development, and the widening of Elmore and Getwell, just to name a few.
Again, thank you to the citizens of Southaven for allowing me the opportunity to serve you over the past 16 years as your mayor and 7 years as your State Representative. May God Bless each of you and our city.
FOX13 News reporter Tom Dees contributed to this report.
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