A northeast Iowa mayor has pleaded not guilty two counts of felony child endangerment.
In assistance to the Waukon Police Department, the Winneshiek County Sheriff’s Office arrested Waukon Mayor Patrick Stone in early July after an investigation into two incidents of possible child abuse, one in March and one in May. According to a criminal complaint, the 42-year-old Stone is accused of acting to physically injure the children, each with a mental or physical disability.
Last Thursday, a judge rejected Stone’s motion to have the case dismissed on grounds that the crime of child endangerment is unconstitutional as applied to parents because the statute doesn’t exempt a parent’s “justified discipline” of their child. The judge noted that Stone is not the first defendant, or the first parent, to claim that Iowa’s child endangerment statute is unconstitutional, so his motion is denied.
During arraignment Monday in Allamakee County District Court, Stone pleaded not guilty to both charges and his trial has been set for November 2nd.
Stone was elected Waukon Mayor in 2019 and then re-elected in 2021. His current term is set to expire at the end of 2023.