No rules bar an individual convicted of a misdemeanor offense from serving in the Tennessee House of Representatives, with one major exception.
"House rules and state law do not prohibit a member from continuing to serve after the conviction of a misdemeanor, as long as the misdemeanor does not arise out of a Representative's official capacity as a member of the Tennessee General Assembly," said Kara Owen, deputy chief of staff for communications and policy for the Office of the Speaker, in an email response to questions from The Greeneville Sun.
Several days after his 2012 arrest, Hawk resigned his chairmanship of the House Conservation and Environment Committee.
"My dedication continues to be caring for my family and serving my constituents. Proving my innocence will take much of my focus, so I feel relinquishing my chairmanship will best serve these goals," Hawk said in a news release at that time.
Owen said the House rules "speak only to felony offenses and misdemeanors related to the office."
"Although the House rules did not require it under the circumstances at the time, Representative Hawk voluntarily relinquished his chairmanship in the 107th General Assembly," Owen said.