Former Southaven Mayor Greg Davis’ retrial underway


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OXFORD, Miss. — A new criminal trial is underway for former Southaven Mayor Greg Davis.

He is accused of stealing money from the city he led, something he repeatedly denied even though he paid back tens of thousands of dollars.

Davis’ previous 2014 conviction for fraud and embezzlement was overturned, because the Mississippi Court of Appeals said he didn’t get a fair trial in DeSoto County.

The new trial is being held in Oxford, Mississippi.

The jury was selected Monday morning followed by opening statements and witness testimony in the afternoon.

The trial moved fast. It’s likely it could finish by Tuesday evening.

Prosecutors called all of their witnesses to the stand by late afternoon.

“You must spend to be reimbursed. That did not happen in this case,” District Attorney John Champion told the jury.

Davis listened closely as prosecutors laid out their evidence, which included a lease agreement and tax documents.

Davis is accused of illegally purchasing a city-owned SUV without approval and of being reimbursed for mileage purchased on a city credit card while he was mayor of Southaven.

“Listen to the proof. Not what they say. What they don’t say,” said defense attorney Steve Farese to the jury. “And ask the questions: How did this happen? Why did it happen? When did it happen? Why did they try to destroy this man’s life?”

The defense told the judge they will have at the most two witnesses testify beginning at 9 a.m. Tuesday.

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