State Watch

Messages exchanged between Bentley, Mason synced to ex-wife’s iPad

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The messages exchanged between former Alabama Gov. Robert Bentley (R) and the woman with whom he allegedly had an affair were reportedly synced to the iPad of the governor’s ex-wife.

Bentley exchanged messages with Rebekah Mason, a top political adviser, which could be seen by his then-wife, Dianne Bentley, TalkingPointsMemo reported.

His state-issued cellphone’s cloud was linked to his state-issued iPad. The former governor had given the iPad to his former wife as a gift.

{mosads}In one text message to Mason, Bentley wrote: “I’m so in love with you.” In another he said: “We are pitiful.”

On Monday, Bentley resigned from his post after pleading guilty to two misdemeanor crimes.

His departure came as the state House kicked off impeachment hearings, which happened after the Alabama Ethics Commission determined there was probable cause that Bentley had violated campaign finance rules.

“I’ve not always made the right choices, I’ve not always said the right things. Though I’ve sometimes failed, I’ve always tried to live up to the high expectations that people have of the person who holds this esteemed office,” Bentley said.

After winning his reelection, Bentley’s wife filed for divorce after she found incriminating text messages and recorded phone conversations between Bentley and Mason.

In a report written for the House Judiciary Committee, a Montgomery lawyer found Bentley used his political position to cover up the affair, threatening staffers, firing the state’s top law enforcement official and using official vehicles to ferry Mason around the state.

The report also found Bentley tried to use state law enforcement officials to break off the relationship.

Before resigning, Bentley appeared at the Montgomery County courthouse, where he was booked on two campaign finance violations.
Bentley will serve two years probation, perform 100 hours of community service and give up the balance of the money in his state campaign account. In return, the state attorney general will not pursue felony charges, according to Ellen Brooks, the prosecutor who oversaw the investigation.
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