Langford sworn in as new Atlantic City mayor

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (AP) - November 12, 2008

After saying he planned to stay in office all day, Evans was ousted when Mayor-elect Lorenzo Langford held a private swearing-in ceremony at 12:45 p.m.

Harry Hurley, a radio talk show host and longtime Langford supporter, administered the oath of office to the new mayor.

"You could feel from the atmosphere in the room that a journey had ben completed, a sense of vindication," Hurley said. "There was no gloating, no hubris. It was just a nice, intimate affair with family and friends around."

An aide said Langford was not taking phone calls Wednesday. The mayor will have a ceremonial public swearing in Thursday at noon.

Langford defeated Evans in a hotly contested Democratic primary election in June for the right to serve the final year of former Mayor Robert Levy's unexpired term.

Langford's victory was certified on Tuesday by the county Board of Elections, even though the office was closed for Veterans' Day. Once the certification was delivered to City Hall on Wednesday morning, Langford "felt a sort of urgency to have a swearing in and have an orderly transfer of power," Hurley said.

Earlier in the day, Evans reported for work as usual, prepared to "take care of any little thing that might pop up."

Confusing? That's nothing new when it comes to Atlantic City, which has seen four mayors in less than a year.

Before Langford and Evans, there was City Council president William Marsh, who took over for a few weeks after his predecessor, Levy, resigned after admitting he lied about his Vietnam War service in order to fatten his veterans' benefits check.

He was sentenced to probation and ordered to pay the government back the $25,000 in overpayments he received.

At the time Levy stepped down, four of the previous eight Atlantic City mayors had been busted on corruption charges.

Langford served as mayor from 2002 to 2005 before being defeated by Levy.

Next June, another primary will be held to nominate candidates for a full four-year term.

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