Charlotte Mayor Patrick Cannon was arrested Wednesday on federal corruption charges, accused of accepting tens of thousands of dollars from undercover FBI agents in a sting. The North Carolina Democrat and longtime City Council member was released on $25,000 bond pending his indictment Wednesday and wouldn't comment as he left the courthouse. If convicted of the three counts of theft and bribery, wire fraud and extortion he's charged with, he could face up to 50 years in prison and $1.5 million in fines, according to federal prosecutors. Cannon is accused of taking at least one hefty bribe in the mayor's office itself — $20,000 in cash in a leather Fossil briefcase in February, according to an affidavit. Cannon resigned Wednesday following his arrest.
In this Oct. 29, 2013 photo Patrick Cannon, Democratic candidate for mayor speaks to students at Queens University in Charlotte, N.C. Cannon faces Republican Edwin Peacock in the Nov. 5, 2013, election. In North Carolina�s largest city, the mayoral race has been a lesson in good behavior. Unlike statewide and national races, there�s been no mudslinging. No blistering attack ads. Just two candidates going from public forum to forum, discussing the issues. (AP Photo/Chuck Burton)
Thursday, Mar 27, 2014 Updated at 4:47 AM PDT