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State Senator offers to resign seat as part of plea bargain

Feb 11, 2016

Credit senatedems.com

Detroit Democrat Virgil Smith has offered to step down from his state Senate seat as part of a plea deal that also dismisses some charges connected to a shooting incident involving his ex-wife.

Wayne County Circuit Judge Lawrence Talon has yet to accept the plea and scheduled a March 14 hearing to decide if the agreement is was tough enough.

As part of the plea, Smith would serve 10 months in the county jail and five years probation for malicious destruction of property. Felonious assault, using a firearm during a felony, and domestic violence charges would be dismissed.

Smith was accused of shooting Anistia Thomas' car. Thomas has said she had resumed an intimate relationship with Smith but found him with a naked woman at his home last May.

Thomas says she was punched before her Mercedez-Benz was shot.

Smith's resignation would leave 10 Democrats in the state Senate, alongside 27 Republicans.

Gov. Rick Snyder could call a special election to fill the vacancy. If he does, it would likely coincide with the upcoming August primary and November general election.

CORRECTION: An earlier version of this story reported that Judge Talon had accepted the plea deal. He has not accepted it and will decide on March 14, 2016.