Oelwein mayor submits letter of resignation

By Lee Hermiston, The Gazette

OELWEIN, Iowa — Oelwein Mayor Jason Manus, accused of five counts of second-degree sexual abuse, has submitted his letter of resignation.

Oelwein city staff confirmed Monday morning they had received the letter of resignation from Manus. The city council is scheduled to consider accepting the letter at Monday night’s council meeting.

City Administrator Jamie Letzring was not immediately available for comment Monday morning.

Council member Paul Ryan said he has seen the letter.

“He’s just resigning,” Ryan said. “His attorney sent the letter to the city administrator and the city attorney and they passed it on to us.”

Ryan declined to comment any further.

Manus, 36, was arrested earlier this month. The Fayette County Attorney’s Office has accused Manus of sexually assaulting two girls — 14 and 9 years old at the time — in July and August 2010. Each offense is a Class B felony punishable by up to 25 years in prison.

The criminal complaints allege that Manus assaulted the 9-year-old girl in his home at 209 Sixth Ave. in Oelwein. Manus allegedly threatened the girl and told her not to tell anyone what he had done, according to the complaints. Manus made similar statements to the 14-year-old, police said.

Police have not said how Manus knew the alleged victims. The sheriff’s department was notified of the alleged abuse by the Department of Human Services.

The City of Oelwein has distanced itself from the investigation and allegations.

“This investigation was not initiated nor conducted by the Oelwein Police Department,” a release from the city states. “We understand these alleged events occurred several years ago, before Mr. Manus’ time as an elected official.”

According to online court records, Manus posted bond on August 21. He has been placed under the supervision of the Department of Corrections and ordered to not have any contact with the alleged victims.

Manus’ arraignment is scheduled for Sept. 3.

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