Local News


Officials Say Three Nebraska Inmates Died in Custody in the Past Week

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - Authorities say a convicted killer imprisoned for more than 40 years and two other ailing inmates have died in custody.

The Nebraska Correctional Services Department says 88-year-old Harold Nokes died Wednesday. He's been serving two life sentences since 1974 for killing Edwin and Wilma Hoyt, of Culbertson, in 1973. He admitted killing them, cutting up their bodies and dumping the parts in Harry Strunk Lake near Cambridge.

Another convicted killer, 68-year-old Gary Pope, also died Wednesday. He was sentenced to life in prison for the 1979 slaying of Richard Rogers in Saunders County.

The department says 57-year-old Wayne Stark died early Monday morning. He'd been serving three to six years for fourth-offense driving under the influence.

The department says all three men were being treated for long-term ailments. Read more...

Counterfeit Cookie Dough: Woman Buys 5 Boxes with Bogus Bill

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) - Police are seeking a woman who passed a counterfeit $100 bill to buy five boxes of Girl Scout cookies in west Omaha.

Authorities say some Girl Scouts had set up outside a store Wednesday afternoon when the woman approached. She said wanted to buy five $4 boxes of the cookies but had only the $100 bill. A scout co-leader, Roni Gosch, gave the woman $80 in change, using her own money so the girls wouldn't run short of cash to make change for other buyers.

Another of the women helping the girls soon suspected the bill was bogus. Police say it was.

Police have obtained pictures of the woman and the vehicle she arrived in from parking lot surveillance video. No arrest has been reported. Read more...

Teen Accused of Firing on Nebraska Trooper Charged as Adult

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) - A teen accused of firing a gun at a Nebraska State trooper and fleeing the officer in a stolen car has been charged as an adult in Douglas County Court.

Prosecutors have charged 17-year-old Shane Kildow with four felony counts: attempted assault of an officer, use of deadly weapon, discharging a firearm from an occupied vehicle and theft.

Investigators say Kildow began firing when the trooper tried to stop him early Tuesday morning northwest of Omaha. Officials say Kildow crashed the stolen car he was driving in Valley, and then fled on foot before he was caught with the help of a police dog. The trooper was not injured.

A public defender appointed to represent Kildow on Thursday did not immediately return a phone message seeking comment. Read more...

Bill to Force Payment of Campaign Fines Clears Initial Vote

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - Nebraska lawmakers have given initial approval to a bill that would require candidates for elected or appointed office to pay campaign violation fines.

The Legislature advanced the bill on a 40-0 vote Thursday. It would apply only to campaign violation fines, not late fees or other fines.

The sponsor, Sen. Carol Blood of Bellevue, says public officials should be held to a higher ethical standard because their salaries are paid by taxpayers.

The bill could prevent cases like the 2013 legislative appointment of a Bellevue businessman who owed more than $16,000 in unpaid state fines for orchestrating a smear campaign against his opponent when he ran for the seat a decade before. Patrick Shannon withdrew from the appointment a few hours after it was announced. Read more...

One Woman Dies in Grand Island Collision; Authorities Release IDs of Drivers

GRAND ISLAND, Neb. (AP) - Grand Island authorities have released the names of a woman who was fatally injured and a man who was hurt in the collision of their cars.

The collision occurred around 2:15 p.m. Wednesday. Police Capt. Jim Duering identified the woman Thursday as Ivelynn Dwinell, of Grand Island, and the man as Larry Roebuck Jr., of Phillips.

Duering says Dwinell was pulling out of a restaurant driveway to head north when her car was struck by Roebuck's southbound car.

Dwinell was pronounced dead later at a hospital. Roebuck was treated for non-life-threatening injuries.

The collision is being investigated.

Man Pleads Not Guilty in December's Drug-Related Slaying in Lincoln

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - A man has pleaded not guilty to what authorities say was a drug-related slaying in Lincoln.

Court records say 33-year-old Jamez Henderson entered his pleas Wednesday in Lancaster County District Court to a second-degree-murder charge, use of a firearm, methamphetamine possession and three other crimes.

Henderson and six other people are suspected in the Dec. 15 shooting death of 41-year-old Jamie Watson. His body was found in a car trunk. Read more...

University of Nebraska-Lincoln Administrator Accused of Theft for Plane Travel

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - An administrator at a University of Nebraska-Lincoln center has been accused of using university money to pay personal airplane travel expenses.

Online court records say 29-year-old Laviania Thandayithabani is charged with felony theft. Her attorney didn't immediately return a call Thursday from The Associated Press. She's assistant director of operations for the Nebraska Transportation Center, which aids collaboration by university, industry and government officials on transportation issues and research.

University police say in court documents that they found 17 charges on the university travel portal system from April 2015 through December 2016 totaling more than $11,300. Officials say none of the trips was approved.

Her next court appearance is scheduled for March 28. Read more...

Lincoln Police Arrest Man on Parole in Connection with Attempted Robbery at CVS

A CrimeStoppers tip leads to the arrest of a 41-year-old in connection with a robbery attempt at CVS Pharmacy on 70th and O on February 11th. Read more...