Rothenberg, 34, an Atlanta attorney, was indicted on July 17.
He is challenging incumbent Superior Court Judge Gail C. Flake in the July 31 nonpartisan election.
The indictment alleges that Rothenberg received more than $1.3 million in funds from a Colorado-based investment group named Winterhawk Energy and Development Corp, and that a portion of those funds were misused.
DeKalb District Attorney Robert James said the funds were intended for an investment deal but were redirected into various accounts controlled by Rothenberg, including a campaign account and a personal banking account.
“Michael Rothenberg unlawfully transferred $440,000 into accounts that he controlled and then illegally used those funds for his own personal use,” James said in a July 17 statement. “He would frequent local DeKalb County spots such as Farm Burger, J. Christopher’s and Walmart on other people’s dimes. This isn’t just a clear violation of the law, but also a violation of the trust of the investors of this development corporation.”
Rothenberg also ran for a seat on the Superior Court bench in 2010. He was defeated in a runoff by Courtney Johnson, a former senior assistant DeKalb district attorney.
On the day of the indictment, Rothenberg told an Atlanta television station that he was unaware of it and did not know that a warrant had been issued for his arrest. He turned himself in on July 18 and was released on a $100,000 bond.
At press time Thursday, Rosenberg had not shown up in the DeKalb Sheriff’s inmate database.