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Council Bluffs 'serial rapist' sentenced to 25 years in prison

Council Bluffs 'serial rapist' sentenced to 25 years in prison

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COUNCIL BLUFFS — A Council Bluffs man described by prosecutors as a “serial rapist” has been sentenced to a lengthy prison term in Pottawattamie County District Court.

Richard J. Siemer Jr., 40, was sentenced by Judge Michael Hooper to 25 years behind bars after pleading guilty to second-degree sexual abuse and third-degree sexual abuse. The charges are Class B and C felonies, respectively.

He will serve the sentences concurrently, and under Iowa’s good time law, Siemer could be eligible for release after 17½ years, according to information provided by Assistant Pottawattamie County Attorney Malina Dobson.

Richard J. Siemer Jr..jpg

Richard J. Siemer Jr.

These are the fourth and fifth sexual assault convictions on Siemer’s record, all involving separate women, according to Dobson.

He was previously convicted once in 2004 and twice in 2011, court records show.

The most recent offenses occurred in July and August 2019 after Siemer befriended women whom he worked with, Dobson said.

“He developed a relationship with them, gained their trust and invited them to his apartment,” Dobson said in a statement to the Nonpareil.

At an evidentiary hearing, Judge Richard Davidson found that Siemer’s modus operandi was the same in the past two cases: Luring the women to his apartment, and shortly after they arrived, attacking them sexually and violently.

Dobson said each victim was initially afraid to come forward — they didn’t know about each other’s assaults, nor did they know the defendant’s history of being a sexual predator.

Upon release from prison, Siemer will be required to be registered as a sex offender for the rest of his life and will be on parole until death.

Dobson said that when Siemer’s sentence runs its course, the state may also seek to commit him to a secure long-term facility.

“In order to commit Siemer, the state must prove he is likely to commit further violent sexual offenses in a separate civil trial,” she said.

Dobson said the women involved in the most recent cases were satisfied with the outcome.

“Both victims were pleased with this plea bargain, as it saved them from the trauma of having to relive their assaults at trial, while also protecting society from further violent attacks by Siemer,” she said.

“Mr. Siemer is a serial rapist, and our community is safer today because of the bravery of the women who participated in this investigation,” Dobson said.

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