LAWRENCE, Mass. (CBS/AP) — A former state legislator, hired under controversial circumstances by the city of Lawrence, has been charged with violating a restraining order obtained by a former girlfriend.

Jose Santiago was released on his own recognizance after pleading not guilty Monday in Lawrence District Court.

Prosecutors said 53-year-old Santiago told the woman if she broke up with him “you’re not going to be with anybody.” Santiago’s attorney said he denies being at a nightclub where the woman worked. Santiago was arrested Saturday in the club parking lot.

Santiago was hired by political ally Mayor William Lantigua to replace a public works department employee fired after taking unpaid leave to care for his cancer-stricken wife.

Santiago was fired from the Methuen police department in 2004 for refusing to take a retraining course at his own expense.

(TM and © Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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