- Associated Press - Friday, October 31, 2014

COVINGTON, La. (AP) - The mayor and town clerk of Pearl River have pleaded not guilty to felony theft and malfeasance charges brought against them earlier this month by a St. Tammany Parish grand jury.

Mayor James Lavigne and town clerk Dianne Bennett Hollie are accused of using public money for personal gain. Those accusations first surfaced in a legislative audit released in May.

Lavigne is facing two counts of unauthorized use of a movable, four counts of malfeasance and theft over $500.

Hollie is charged with two counts of unauthorized use of a movable, malfeasance and theft over $1,500.

At an arraignment hearing Wednesday, NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune (https://bit.ly/1wO2wdq ) reports Judge Raymond Childress ordered both Lavigne and Hollie to post a $7,500 bond by Nov. 7.

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Information from: The Times-Picayune, https://www.nola.com

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