Governor suspends councilman accused of domestic violence

By The Associated Press | Posted - Mar. 13, 2017 at 6:40 p.m.

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COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — Gov. Henry McMaster has suspended a Columbia city councilman accused of slamming his estranged wife's leg in a car door after they argued.

The Republican governor issued an executive order Monday suspending Moe Baddourah while he faces a charge of second-degree domestic violence. Baddourah says the accusation is false.

The state's constitution allows the governor to suspend an officeholder indicted for a "crime involving moral turpitude." McMaster says domestic violence is such a crime. He says the order "in no manner addresses" Baddourah's guilt or innocence.

A grand jury indicted Baddourah in January for the alleged incident last summer.

Baddourah says it's "troubling that the governor would suspend a public official for an alleged misdemeanor without a conviction." He says the charge is part of a divorce and custody case.

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