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DOUBLE FATALITY CRASH

Driver arrested for manslaughter in crash that killed 2

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — An Omaha woman who is accused of causing a fatal crash that killed two people last week has been arrested on suspicion of manslaughter. Twenty-eight-year-old Chinyere Nwuju was arrested Saturday after she was released from a hospital. Police said Nwuju was speeding southbound in a sport utility vehicle when she ran a red light in northwestern Omaha and hit a pickup truck around 9 p.m. Wednesday. The force of the collision split the pickup in half and killed Roberto Gonzalez, 58, and Annette North, 56, who were both from Omaha. Nebraska Department of Motor Vehicle records show that Nwuju’s driver’s license is suspended.

FOUR MOTORCYCLE RIDERS DIE

Man gets probation in crash that killed 4 motorcyclists

OGALLALA, Neb. (AP) — A Kansas man has been sentenced to four years of probation in a Nebraska crash that killed four Iowa motorcyclists. The Kearney Hub reports that Jeser Cisneros-Hernandez, 24, of Liberal, Kansas, also was ordered Friday to serve 400 hours of community service. He pleaded no contest in February to reckless and willful vehicular homicide. Prosecutors dropped three more counts and two other charges in return for his pleas. Prosecutors say his vehicle hit two motorcycles carrying two people each on July 1, 2017, near Ogallala.

DOG KILLED-CHARGES

Nebraska man faces felony charges after dog brutally killed

KEARNEY, Neb. (AP) — A Nebraska man faces felony charges after allegedly killing his dog with a baseball bat and then burying it in his backyard. The Lincoln Journal Star reports that 21-year-old Khaleem Baringer of Kearney is charged with felony use of a weapon to commit a felony and intentional felony animal cruelty of his dog, Mary Jane, a week ago. A witness told police Baringer hit the dog several times in the head with the bat after it defecated on the floor and nipped at a woman as she tried to place the dog into a kennel.

AP-US-NEBRASKA-DEMOCRATS

Democrats fight for relevance in red-state Nebraska

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Democrats in Nebraska are struggling for relevance in their Republican-dominated state, and a series of high-profile embarrassments is only making it harder. The party is losing registered voters to Republicans, Libertarians and independents, and its long-shot nominee for Senate recently admitted to sending sexually offensive text messages to a campaign staffer. Nebraska Democrats say they need more national party support to win statewide races, but they acknowledge that they still have a long way to go to regain a toehold in the state.

VIRUS OUTBREAK-NEBRASKA

Available hospital beds drop in Nebraska as virus cases rise

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — State health figures show the number of hospital beds available in Nebraska has dropped below 40% as the state continues to see more COVID-19 cases confirmed. The state’s online coronavirus tracker shows that as of Thursday, 2,330 of the state’s total 3,834 hospital beds were occupied. That left 1,504, or 39%, of hospital beds available. The site also shows that 43% of intensive care unit beds and 78% of ventilators in the state were available. The state saw another 125 cases of the virus reported on Thursday, to take the state’s total to 18,346. There also were three new COVID-19 deaths, bringing the state’s total to 260.

LOCKED IN BASEMENT

NE Nebraska couple gets 6 years for locking boy in basement

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — A federal judge sentenced a northeast Nebraska couple to six years in prison after they pleaded guilty to locking a special-needs foster child in a basement storage room for extended periods. U.S. District Judge Robert F. Rossiter, Jr. sentenced Charles and Krista Parker on Friday to prison on multiple counts of child abuse. There is no parole in the federal prison system. The couple was arrested after Omaha Nation Law Enforcement Services officers responded to a report in September 2018 and found a then 9-year-old boy locked in a basement utility room with a concrete floor, no windows and no ventilation. The child slept on two urine-soaked blankets.

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