Iowa Attorney General's Office Files Charges Against Some Current & Former Public Officials & Employees With City Of Armstrong

Fri 2-12-2021

(Armstrong)-- The Iowa Attorney General's Office announced Friday it has filed charges against some current and former public officials and employees with the city of Armstrong. 

The city's Mayor, Greg Buum, Police Chief Craig Merrill, City Clerk Tracie Lang and former City Clerk Connie Thackery were charged with felony and misdemeanor offenses in 21-count joint trial information in Emmet County District Court. Buum, Merrill and Thackery were charged with ongoing criminal conduct, a class "B" felony. Lang was charged with fraudulent practice in the 1st degree, a class "C" felony. 

The trial information also alleges additional counts against some of those defendants for theft, felonious misconduct in office, non-felonious misconduct in office, tampering with records, assault with a dangerous weapon and falsifying public documents. 

Officials say three of the defendants were arrested today (Fri. 2/12) by the Emmet County Sheriff's Office with assistance from the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation.

Authorities say the charges stem from a multi-year investigation by those two agencies and the State Auditor's Office. 

The investigation uncovered alleged wrongdoing including but not limited to misappropriation of city funds, the presentation of fraudulent public records, deploying a taser against a civilian in exchange for cash and falsification of ledgers to conceal embezzlement. 

The Iowa Attorney General's Office is prosecuting the cases at the request of the Emmet County Attorney due to a potential conflict of interest.

The A-G's office says additional arrests are pending.

Buum, Thackery and Lang are all being held in the Dickinson county jail. Bond for Buum was set at $67,000; Thackery's was set at $33,000 and Lang's was put at $44,000.

Greg Buum

Connie Thackery

Tracie Lang