Legislature OK’s another special committee to investigate state prisons

Maybe the third time’s the charm?From the Omaha World-Herald:LINCOLN — The Nebraska Legislature will continue its extra scrutiny of the state’s corrections system.On a 28-11 vote Thursday, lawmakers approved formation of the Nebraska Justice System Special Oversight Committee.It is the third special committee formed by the Legislature since 2014 to look into chronic problems within […]

Inmates’ deaths ruled homicides

Nebraska prison officials say the deaths of two inmates during a March 2 riot at the Tecumseh state prison were homicides.  From the Lincoln Journal-Star report:Damon Fitzgerald and Michael Galindo both had multiple sharp and blunt force injuries, according to a press release from the Nebraska Department of Correctional Services.Spokeswoman Dawn-Renee Smith said Galindo’s death […]

Family of inmate killed in Tecumseh prison riot sues state

The family of one of two inmates killed in a riot at the Tecumseh state prison in 2015 has filed a lawsuit against the state. The family of Shon Collins filed the lawsuit in Lancaster County District Court. They say the prison was under-staffed and guards failed to protect Collins and another inmate who was […]

Report Highlights Low Morale at Tecumseh Prison

Employees at the Tecumseh State Correctional Institution are the least happy among Nebraska Department of Corrections workers, according to a report from the state Ombudsman’s office. JoAnne Young writes about the survey in the Lincoln Journal-Star.A high percentage of workers at the maximum security prison who responded to the survey last month said they felt […]

prison riot kills two inmates convicted of sex offenses; attorney general dithers

A prison riot at the Tecumseh [NE] State Correctional Institution left two inmates dead. Both had been convicted of sexual assault of a child.The prison, of course, has been on lockdown while the staff restores order.Officials stress there is no risk to the public.Good to know. Instead of a risk to the public, two men […]

Former corrections attorney says she purposely dropped bombshell

Sharon Lindgren (AP)By Deena Winter | From Watchdog.orgLINCOLN, Neb. — Sharon Lindgren knew exactly what she was doing when she dropped a bombshell into her testimony during a legislative hearing on prison scandals in September.Why, Lindgren was asked, did she think the state Department of Correctional Services failed to heed a 2013 Nebraska Supreme Court ruling, State vs. Castillas, on how […]

Committee Places Blame for Corrections Mess Right Where It Belongs: In the Lap of the Governor

Gov. Dave Heineman is primarily responsible for the Nebraska Department of Corrections mess, according to the Legislature’s Department of Correctional Services Special Investigative Committee.“The things that happen in the Department of Corrections are right at the doorstep of the governor, and anybody in the military knows that the top dog is the commander,” said State […]

November Newsletter Focuses on Gratitude, Mutual Support

The November issue of NINETY-FIVE%, our monthly newsletter for donors and friends, is arriving in mailboxes.In keeping with the season, one article focuses on gratitude: It doesn’t matter whether you are a registered citizen or not, you can find something for which to be grateful. Leaving behind the complaint-filled life frees us.This issue also has […]

Lawmakers Have an Opportunity to Correct Errors and Weaknesses in Sex Offender Statutes

To the surprise of researchers, the State of Nebraska has written into its law an outdated and wrong opinion.The incorrect opinion is that all registered citizens are dangerous. University of Nebraska-Omaha researcher Ryan Spohn, Ph.D., in an interview with Nebraskans Unafraid, said “I was struck by what I saw as an opinion being codified into […]

One Word for Nebraska Department of Corrections Data: UNRELIABLE

Nebraska legislative auditors charged with looking into the state’s Department of Corrections mess are having a difficult time because . . . well . . . because of the mess.The auditors say data from the department are unreliable. We are not surprised. Unreliable information plagues many segments of the Nebraska law enforcement and criminal justice […]