Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

October 2, 2013

Suspended W.Va. judge agrees to resign

Associated Press

CHARLESTON — The attorney for a suspended Mingo County judge says his client has resigned from the bench.

Federal prosecutors say Circuit Judge Michael Thornsbury is expected to plead guilty to a conspiracy charge Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Charleston.

Attorney Steve Jory tells The Associated Press that Thornsbury submitted a resignation letter to the state Supreme Court. Thornsbury also has consented to disbarment in a letter to the state Office of Disciplinary Counsel.

Thornsbury is accused of participating in a scheme to protect the reputation of Mingo County Sheriff Eugene Crum from revelations he’d bought drugs from a campaign sign-maker.

Prosecutors allege Thornsbury and others offered a lighter sentence if the man fired his lawyer and hired one they preferred.

Crum died in April in an unrelated shooting.