WIUM Tristates Public Radio

Judge Rules in Favor of City

Mar 18, 2012

Former Fort Madison Police Officer William Bowker will not be returning to the department.  He was fired by City Manager Byron Smith on Feb. 25, 2010.

Smith cited various acts of misconduct.  They include falling asleep and/or missing phone calls while serving on the Southeast Iowa Narcotics Task Force and having an affair with the wife of Police Chief Bruce Niggemeyer.

Bowker appealed the ruling to the Fort Madison Civil Service Commission.  That panel sided with the city in mid-2010, prompting Bowker to sue the city and the commission in district court.

Judge Michael Schilling has ruled the firing of Bowker was fully warranted and justified.  He says the affair with Niggemeyer’s wife and Bowker’s lying about it constituted misconduct detrimental to the public interest.

Schilling added such misconduct, on top of Bowker’s acts while serving on the local task force, demonstrated a lack of sound character, sobriety, judgment and discretion.

The judge says Bowker has 30 days to pay the costs associated with the lawsuit.

Bowker and Christine Niggemeyer were married last year.