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Omaha police say 47-year-old Julian Flores, of Omaha, died Friday at a hospital where he had been since being hit by a car Wednesday morning at 21st and Cuming streets.
Police believe Flores was walking or running around 7 a.m. Wednesday when he was hit by a car driven by 24-year-old Justin Peters, of Bellevue. Police say Peters fled the scene and was found and arrested about half-an-hour later.
Police have charged Peters with leaving the scene of an injury crash and driving under the influence in an injury crash. His could now face more serious charges in the wake of Flores’ death.
Police say 27-year-old Larry Goynes was arrested and booking into the Douglas County Jail on Friday night on a warrant charging him with first-degree murder.
The warrant was issued for Goynes earlier Friday in the early morning Jan. 6 shooting death of 27-year-old Kyle LeFlore outside the Reign Lounge in north Omaha.
LeFlore was a staff sergeant in the Army who was visiting family in Omaha for the holidays when he was killed. His father, Kay LeFlore, tells the Omaha World-Herald that he believes his son was killed in a robbery.
It was not clear Saturday whether Goynes yet had an attorney.
A’Nyia Patton died Friday night at Children’s Hospital in Omaha, Nebraska, where she was taken after being found by firefighters in the burning apartment Wednesday morning.
An autopsy has been ordered.
The girl’s mother, 37-year-old Michelle Patton, remained in critical condition at the Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha.
Firefighters were sent to the blaze 9:30 a.m. Wednesday. Within minutes, they had the fire under control and found the mother and child in a bedroom. At the time, neither had a pulse and CPR was started to revive them.
The cause of the fire remains under investigation.
The Sarpy County Sheriff’s Office says the crash happened early Saturday morning on Highway 75 when 32-year-old Juan Pablo Muro, of Lexington, was driving northbound in the southbound lanes of the highway. Officials say a police officer was on the way to the area to check on reports of a wrong-way driver when Muro’s car hit a sport utility vehicle driven by a 32-year-old Bellevue woman.
The woman and her 2-year-old son, who was in the SUV, were seriously injured and remained hospitalized Saturday. Muro died at the scene.
Authorities continue to investigate.
LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — Nebraska officials will target potential sex traffickers this year with more proactive law enforcement and an ad campaign at rest stops and other places where victims are coerced into prostitution, Attorney General Doug Peterson announced Thursday.
The new “Demand an End” initiative is the latest step in a multiyear effort to stop sex trafficking, particularly when the victims are minors. Lawmakers and Gov. Pete Ricketts have increased penalties for traffickers and those who pay for sex in recent years and passed legislation intended to help those who are trafficked.
Peterson said the initiative is designed to send a message that state officials take the issue seriously and will prosecute trafficking cases. Law enforcement officers plan to focus on those who purchase sex.
“You’re going to pay a really significant price if you’re caught,” Peterson said at a Capitol news conference, where he was joined by dozens of elected state officials and advocates.
Many of the anti-trafficking advertisements will appear on YouTube and at rest stops on Interstate 80, which officials have identified as a major conduit for traffickers. They also will be posted at libraries, recreation centers, truck stops and businesses.
Peterson said the Nebraska State Patrol plans to increase its enforcement efforts later this year, and the newly passed laws will help. Soliciting a minor for sex now carries a penalty of 20 years to life in prison.
“The ball has now been handed to us,” the attorney general said.
The Human Trafficking Initiative has said 11 percent of the people sold online for sex in Nebraska are advertised as under the age of 21. In July, an Omaha man was sentenced to prison for his role in a sex trafficking ring near Offutt Air Force Base that involved a 15-year-old girl.
The campaign has attracted a broad, bipartisan coalition that includes law enforcement, advocates for women and children, nonprofits and the trucking industry.
Sen. Patty Pansing Brooks of Lincoln, who led the charge on several recent human trafficking bills, said the campaign will help prevent “the sale and resale of human flesh” in Nebraska.
“These people (who are trafficked) are subject to force, fraud and coercion,” she said.
Lawmakers will consider at least one bill this year designed to further restrict human trafficking. Sen. Carol Blood of Bellevue has introduced legislation designed to prevent criminals from using digital currencies such as bitcoin for illegal purposes. Blood said such currencies help traffickers to buy and sell women and girls for sex.
The campaign started in Georgia and is being shared with Nebraska for free.
Court records say 35-year-old Ryan O’Toole was sentenced Thursday to six to eight years. He’d pleaded guilty to refusing to submit to a sobriety test. Prosecutors dropped a charge of driving under the influence, fifth or subsequent offense. He also was credited for 176 days already served.
Officers found O’Toole lying near the mower on May 25. Police say he’d been driving it south against one-way traffic and fell off when he tried to turn west. Officers say he’d been drinking beer while driving from house to house.
22-year-old Marquell Buie was sentenced to 18 months on Thursday.
Prosecutors say Buie was smoking marijuana and watching a movie at his apartment in April while the toddlers played nearby. He placed his loaded gun on a counter. The boy grabbed the weapon and shot Buie’s daughter, who lost an eye.
Buie pleaded no contest to negligent child abuse resulting in serious bodily harm.
The girl spent several weeks at a hospital. Her mother told the judge that it could be years before they discover if she has developmental problems as a result.
OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — A man once imprisoned for a Minnesota homicide has been sentenced to life for a Nebraska killing.
Court records say the sentence was handed down Friday to 32-year-old Tyeric Lessley, of Omaha. Early last month a Douglas County jury in Omaha found him guilty of first-degree murder and four other crimes. Prosecutors say he killed Suzanne Pope and injured her fiance, Curtis Goodwin, on Oct. 29, 2016. He’d used a gun to gain access to their house, apparently to rob them.
Authorities say Lessley was sent to a Minnesota prison after pleading guilty in 2010 to unintentional felony murder in Minneapolis. He was paroled in April 2015.
The Department of Revenue announced Friday that net tax receipts were nearly 10 percent higher than projections for the month. The state saw net tax collections of $415 million, which is $37 million more than the certified state forecast.
Net individual income tax collections were more than 16 percent higher than projections, and net sales-and-use tax revenue was 6 percent higher. Net corporate income taxes came in more than 2 percent higher than projected, while net miscellaneous tax revenue was more than 9 percent lower.
The governor’s office cited media reports that many Americans prepaid their taxes to take advantage of state and local tax deductions that the federal tax bill eliminated.