DeKalb CEO Burrell Ellis returns to power

Dekalb County CEO Burrell Ellis was reinstated to his elected position Monday. KENT D. JOHNSON / KDJOHNSON@AJC.COM

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Dekalb County CEO Burrell Ellis was reinstated to his elected position Monday. KENT D. JOHNSON / KDJOHNSON@AJC.COM

DeKalb County CEO Burrell Ellis was reinstated Monday after the Georgia Supreme Court overturned his conviction.

Ellis had been suspended from office since July 2013, when he faced criminal charges for allegedly shaking down county businesses for campaign contributions.

A jury found Ellis guilty in July 2015 of attempted extortion and perjury, but the state's highest court threw out the verdict Nov. 30 because he didn't receive a fair trial. He was reinstated when the Georgia Supreme Court sent the case back to DeKalb courts.

Ellis will be the county’s chief executive for the last three weeks of his four-year term, which ends Dec. 31.

He replaces Interim DeKalb CEO Lee May. Newly elected CEO Mike Thurmond will take office in January.

Though his conviction was reversed, the charges remain pending. Incoming DeKalb District Attorney Sherry Boston will have to decide whether to seek a retrial.

Please read the full story on MyAJC.com.

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Channel 2's Steve Gehlbach reports.

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