City leaders react to Boom's conviction

Davenport Third Ward Ald. Bill Boom resigns after pleading guilty to perjury

DAVENPORT, Iowa. - Davenport city leaders are dealing with controversy after Alderman Bill Boom admitted to committing a crime Tuesday.

Boom pleaded guilty to lying to a federal jury.

The conviction is forcing him off of the city council.

Under Iowa Code, a convicted felon cannot hold a public office.

Boom has represented the third ward for 10 years, but that all came to an end with his guilty plea.

His colleagues at City Hall tell Local 4 News they were not expecting this to happen.

"I was very shocked to hear it, but I wasn't surprised," said Fourth Ward Alderman Raymond Ambrose.

Ambrose had that to say about his colleague's conviction.

Tuesday Boom admitted he lied to a federal jury.

The conviction stems from an incident a year ago.

Drugs were found in Boom's home.

Gage Wenthe, 25, was arrested. He'd been living in Boom's home for six years.

At that time, Boom told us he was like a mentor to Wenthe.

The US Department of Justice says Boom claimed he didn't know Wenthe did drugs.

He also said he didn't give money to a third person.

By pleading guilty, he admitted those statements  were lies.

Ambrose says the situation is disappointing.

"It tarnishes our great city. We are America's greatest city. When this happened. It's just very sad, very sad for the good people of the third ward," said Ambrose.

Mayor Frank Klipsh says he has received Boom's resignation.

"I think he's represented the third ward. He's done a good job of that over the years, and I think obviously as we go forward now, this is a personal issue, and there's not really much more we can say," said Klipsch.

Now, city leaders will move forward in deciding how to replace Boom.

"I feel bad for the people of the third ward that voted for him. They counted on Alderman Boom," said Ambrose. 

Mayor Klipsch says the city council is now in talks with the Scott County auditor to figure out how to fill the seat left open by Boom.

The 65-year-old is facing several possible punishments for lying under oath.

The US Department of Justice says he could face up to five years in prison.

Boom could also be fined up to $250 thousand.

Plus, he faces as much as three years of parole after release.

His sentencing is scheduled for August 24th.

Boom's guilty plea directly impacts city council.

Scott County's auditor says the city has some options now that Boom submitted his resignation.

The city council has 60 days to either appoint someone to the seat or hold a special election.

If the council chooses to make an appointment, it must notify the public four to 20 days in advance.

That can be challenged if people interested in the seat file paperwork.

They'd need 96 signatures to force a special election.

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