It’s an early election day today in the northeast Iowa town of Oelwein as residents are choosing from three candidates to fill the open mayor’s position. The post came up for grabs when the 36-year-old former mayor Jason Manus resigned in August after being arrested over accusations of sexual abuse involving two young girls.
Manus has pleaded not guilty to five counts of sexual abuse involving two girls, ages 9 and 12, in incidents that allegedly took place at Manus’ home in Oelwein in 2010. After submitting his resignation, the Oelwein City Council initially appointed council person and mayor pro-tem Peggy Sherretts to lead the city. However, a special election was set after citizens signed and submitted a petition with enough signatures to force a vote.
Sherretts is one of three people on the ballot. The polls are open until 8 p.m. Whoever wins the race will fill out the rest of the current mayor’s term, until the next regular city elections in November of 2015.
(Reporting by Roger King, KOEL, Oelwein)