Melissa Howard, a state House candidate running in District 73, has issued an apology after posting a picture of an apparently fake college degree.

"I would like to apologize to my family and my supporters for this situation," Howard posted on Facebook. "It was not my intent to deceive or mislead anyone. I made a mistake in saying that I completed my degree. What I did was wrong and set a bad example for someone seeking public service. I am staying in the race and intend to win and lead by example from now on."

Howard flew to Ohio last week to prove she graduated from Miami University, and even posted a picture online of her with a 1996 college degree mounted and framed in her mother's house.

But university officials quickly said the degree did not appear to be authentic. Howard's campaign initially disputed the story as "fake news." The apology makes clear, however, that Howard did not finish her degree when she attended the university.

Howard is running against Tommy Gregory in the Aug. 28 Republican primary. The winner faces Democrat Liv Coleman in a Nov. 6 general election.