Rep. Todd’s lawyer: Arrest was a political stunt

State Rep. Curry Todd pleaded not guilty Wednesday morning in Shelby County General Sessions Court to a misdemeanor charge of stealing an opponent’s campaign signs, reports the Commercial Appeal. His next court date is Aug. 22.

Todd referred questions to his attorney, Ted Hansom, who said the handling of Todd’s arrest this week appeared to be a calculated stunt to embarrass him on the eve of an election.

“Let’s just say I’m very disappointed in certain aspects of the system,” Hansom said. “I’d prefer we’d keep the law the law and politics, politics.”

A Sheriff’s spokesman said Tuesday Todd was given several chances to talk to investigators about the sign theft. When he didn’t, it led to Todd’s arrest at his home.

Hansom disputed that account.

“I don’t know who they told,” he said. “They didn’t tell Curry Todd, and they didn’t tell me.”

He said that after news reports of the sign theft broke last month, he reached out to investigators but they didn’t respond.

He questioned why Todd was given a $100 bond, rather than being released without bond. The opponent who filed the complaint, Mark Lovell, stepped forward and paid the bond. Hansom said that’s one of a series of events so improbable that they couldn’t be a coincidence.