Nebraska gubernatorial candidate Pete Ricketts has won the endorsement of U.S. Representative Lee Terry. The Republican hopeful's campaign announced the endorsement on Thursday. In a statement, Terry says he's backing Ricketts because of his experience creating jobs, managing budgets and helping small business owners. Ricketts is the founder of Drakon LLC, an investment firm that focuses on local entrepreneurs and startup companies. He also serves on TD Ameritrade's board of directors and is a director for the Chicago Cubs baseball team. Ricketts is competing in a five-way Republican primary for governor. The candidates are vying to replace GOP Governor Dave Heineman, who is leaving office in 2015 because of term limits.
Resolution would give those outside Omaha a vote
The Omaha City Council has voted for a measure seeking to allow people living just outside city limits to vote in city elections. The resolution by City Councilman Franklin Thompson has sparked a debate between those who say allowing people who don't pay city taxes to vote in city elections is unconstitutional, and those who say people living just outside city limits often are subjected to city laws and regulations and, therefore, should get a vote. The City Council voted 4-3 Tuesday for the resolution to lobby the Nebraska Legislature next year to pass a bill allowing the move. Council members Garry Gernandt, Aimee Melton and Rich Pahls joined Thompson in voting for the change. Council members Ben Gray, Chris Jerram and Pete Festersen voted against it.
A 58-year-old Nebraska man already charged with killing his former divorce lawyer has been charged with killing his former wife. Buffalo County Attorney Shawn Eatherton says Michael Petersen, of rural Glenvil, has been charged with first-degree murder and use of a firearm to commit a felony. He's accused of shooting to death 58-year-old Nancy Petersen at her home in rural Buffalo County. Her body was found the morning of November 14th. Michael Petersen was charged with first-degree murder last week in the shooting death of attorney Todd Elsbernd. The 52-year-old Elsbernd was fatally shot November 13th outside his law office in downtown Grand Island. Michael Petersen remained in custody on Thursday. Online court records don't list the name of his attorney in either case.
Neb. judge rules in favor of gun-rights groups
A federal judge in Nebraska has ordered the state to stop enforcing a law that prevents legal, non-citizens from getting a permit to carry a concealed handgun. U.S. District Judge Richard Kopf issued the ruling last week after an agreement was reached between the Nebraska attorney general's office and two gun-rights groups that sued the state. The lawsuit argued that the law violates the equal protection rights of lawful, permanent residents who would otherwise qualify for a permit. It was filed on behalf of Carlos Nino De Rivera Lajous, a Mexican man who has lived legally in Lincoln since 1990. Lajous, a member of the Second Amendment Foundation and the Nebraska Firearms Owners Association, applied for a concealed-carry permit in February but was denied.
Two people are dead following a single-vehicle crash in eastern Nebraska. The Nebraska State Patrol says the crash on Bennington Road in Douglas County was reported just before 1:30 p.m. Thursday. Investigators say the vehicle left the road and rolled, hitting a tree. Two people in the vehicle were killed. Their names are being withheld pending notification of their family. Investigators say the two were wearing seat belts at the time of the crash.
Inmate pleads guilty to robbing Beatrice bank
A prison inmate has pleaded guilty to robbing a Beatrice bank in August while out on work release. Reports say 32-year-old Lucius Turner entered the plea Thursday as part of a deal with prosecutors. He faces between 15 and 20 years in prison when he's sentenced in January. As part of his plea deal, Turner will be sent to the Tecumseh State Correctional Institute. Turner robbed a Pinnacle Bank branch in August while on work release from the Nebraska Department of Corrections. Investigators say he and 35-year-old Gilbert McCabe slipped a teller a note demanding money. Both men were later arrested. The case has been cited as part of Governor Dave Heineman's effort to change Nebraska's system of awarding "good time" credit to prisoners.
Lincoln man accused of beating 5-month-old son A Lincoln man has been arrested on suspicion of severally beating his 5-month-old son. The Lincoln Police Department says 43-year-old Raad Al-Masaudi was taken into custody Wednesday. He faces felony counts of child abuse and serious bodily harm. Al-Masaudi told the boy's mother while she was out grocery shopping on November 12th that the boy's toddler sister head-butted the infant. Al-Masaudi says he tried CPR on the boy, who had gone limp and was not breathing. The parents took the infant to the hospital. Police say Al-Masaudi's account was not consistent with the boy's multiple brain bleeds. Al-Masaudi is at the Lancaster County jail. Court records do not list an attorney. The boy remains hospitalized in critical condition.
Neb. man gets jail for using bad checks for pizza A Lincoln man has been sentenced to nearly a year in jail for writing more than $1,200 in bad checks to buy a lot of pizza. Reports say Damaun Goods was sentenced Tuesday. He has served at least 180 days in jail, and he may finish his sentence soon with good time. Goods pleaded guilty to theft after he was accused of writing nearly 30 bad checks to several businesses that serve pizza. Police say he wrote the checks from his closed account, as well as one that belonged to a relative. Goods says he used the checks because he needed to eat and his oven didn't work.
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