Hancock County

State rests; defense begins in the morning in Longo trial (UPDATED 4:15 p.m.)

The state called only six witnesses in the embezzlement trial of Waveland Mayor Tommy Longo before resting this afternoon.

Because a defense witness won't be available until Thursday, Circuit Judge John Gargiulo recessed the trial until 9 a.m.

In morning proceedings, Longo's attorney argued in Hancock County Circuit Court that his client did nothing wrong when he used a city-issued fuel card to pump diesel into his personal vehicle 20 times between 2008 and 2009.

Donald Rafferty said during opening statements that he plans to call at least 10 witnesses who will say Longo works 24-7 as mayor, including former Bay St. Louis Mayor Eddie Favre. Rafferty said Favre will testify to at least 25 occasions in which he saw Longo at public events representing Waveland where he was in his personal vehicle.

Rafferty also said Longo drives his Ford Excursion more often than his city-issued 2006 Dodge truck because it is easier for Longo to enter and exit the Excursion due to hip and knee pain.

The attorney went on to claim that the state's investigation, which took 167 hours at a cost of $6,100, was initiated by former city clerk Maureen Bordelon after she began a romance with someone with aspirations to become mayor.

Assistant District Attorney Crosby Parker in his opening statement said Longo stole $1,100 worth of fuel from Waveland.

"He broke the trust and he broke the law. And for that, he must be held accountable," Parker said.

The trial is in recess for lunch and will resume at 1 p.m. Sunherald.com is covering the trial.