Rockingham County Attorney Jim Reams, two others suspended
Foster said a former employee of Reams made a complaint to his office two weeks ago. Foster said last week he sought further assistance from the U.S. Attorney and the FBI with the investigation. Investigators refused to divulge the nature of the complaint, or what they learned.
The announcement brought a rapid shake-up for the Rockingham County Attorney's Office. Reams has held the elected post since 1998.
When prosecutors and staff arrived for work at the bottom-floor of the courthouse, they were barred from going into their offices.
Senior Assistant Attorney General James Boffetti would be serving as the interim-county attorney, they were told.
"We are hopeful they will be completed in short order," Foster said of the employee interviews.
Reams was suspended by Foster Wednesday and given a letter that read, "At this juncture, this suspension is on a temporary basis in order to allow state and federal investigators to conduct an investigation into the operations and your management of the Rockingham County Attorney's Office."
Foster said during the news conference that the interview with the former employee, "led us to a number of other former employees we interviewed along with agents from the FBI. The interviews corroborated the allegations made by the initial complainant and raised other issues."
"They indicated that they were coming," Coyle said.
"It's disheartening to hear — to know that any of this could be true," Tombarello said.
"This was really a shock," Tombarello said. "I thought, 'Am I hearing what I am actually hearing?' It was upsetting to listen to."
"This office remains open for business and the Rockingham County Attorney's Office will continue to function and administer criminal justice uninterrupted and unabated during pendency of this investigation," Kacavas said.
Reams and Reid could not be reached for comment Thursday. No one came to the door of Reid's Epsom home.
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