ESTHERVILLE, Iowa – Another former city official in Armstrong has been arrested on criminal charges.
Former city clerk Mary “Kate” Staton is facing one count of 3rd degree theft and one count of tampering with records. The Emmet County Sheriff’s Office says Staton surrendered herself at the county courthouse Tuesday.
Greg Buum (left), Tracie Lang, Connie Thackery (right)
These charges stem from a multi-year investigation that has also led to the arrest of Armstrong Mayor Greg Buum, Police Chief Craig Merrill, City Clerk Tracie Lang, and former city clerk Connie Thackery. Those four are facing a total of 21 criminal counts related to the misappropriation of city funds, the presentation of fraudulent public records, the falsification of ledgers to conceal embezzlement, and the use of a Taser against a civilian in exchange for cash.
The Emmet County Sheriff’s Office says it began looking into allegations raised by a special investigation by the State Auditor’s Office and was assisted by the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation. The Iowa Attorney General’s Office has taken over prosecution of this case.
Armstrong is a community of about 900 people located roughly 82 miles northwest of Mason City.