State Representative Joseph Almeida put out a brief statement Wednesday in response to charges he illegally pocketed campaign funds for personal use.
The Providence democrat maintained his innocence, indicating he has no intention of stepping down from his house seat.
"As I move forward, my focus will be on representing the hard-working people of my district." Almeida said. "I respect the legal process and I maintain my innocence as this matter is adjudicated in court."
Almeida pleaded not guilty to one count of misappropriation of funds after a State Police investigation found he could not properly account for $6,122 in spending from his campaign account. The investigation was prompted by a Board of Elections audit.
Almeida, a former Providence police officer, stepped down Tuesday from his leadership position as house majority whip.
House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello said he was "disappointed" to learn of Almedia's arrest but would not call for his resignation.