Columbus Man Who Held Officers at Bay Imprisoned

standoffCOLUMBUS, Neb. (AP) — A 24-year-old man arrested after a five-hour standoff with officers in Columbus has been sentenced for several crimes.

Online court records say Stephen Knott on Friday was given up to 19 years in prison for crimes that included strangulation, use of a weapon and false imprisonment. He’d pleaded guilty on July 20 after prosecutors lowered some charges and dropped others.

On March 6 Knott held officers at bay for around five hours. Police say he had threatened and assaulted his ex-girlfriend while armed with a handgun.

Lincoln Man Back Home After Finishing 2nd on TV Show ‘Alone’

aloneLINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — A 22-year-old man is back home in Lincoln with his wife and friends after finishing second on a reality TV show contest called “Alone.”

The show had pitted 10 experienced survivalists against each other in a last-man-standing competition. Sam Larson finished second to Blairsville, Georgia, contestant Alan Kay, who was the last one to leave the wilderness.

Larson says he always tries to “tough things out,” but that it was difficult to stay motivated while remaining isolated for weeks in the Canadian wilderness when he wanted to go home and take care of his pregnant wife. She gave birth to their first child shortly after Larson returned.

Boulder Tossed Through Door Glass at Omaha Islamic Center

omaha-policeOMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Police are trying to find out who tossed a boulder through glass on a door at the Omaha Islamic Center.

Police say some people began throwing stones at the center in north-central Omaha a little before 3:30 a.m. Sunday. Images from a security camera show one of the people heaving the 40-pound boulder through the door glass. No injuries or arrests have been reported.

Leaders at the center say the attack was the first in 20 years.

The Council on American-Islamic Relations on Monday called for state and federal authorities to investigate the incident as a possible hate crime and for police to increase protection at the mosque.

Second Cancers Are on the Rise; 1 in 5 US Cases is a Repeat

Medical-ChartSecond cancers are on the rise. Nearly 1 in 5 new cases in the U.S. now involves someone who has had the disease before.

When doctors talk about second cancers, they mean a different tissue type or a different site, not a recurrence or spread of the original tumor.

The trend is partly a success story: More people are surviving cancer and living long enough to get it again. Second cancers also can arise from the same gene mutations or risk factors, such as smoking, that spurred the first one. And some cancer treatments such as radiation can raise the risk of a new cancer forming later in life.

Doctors say cancer survivors should have a formal plan for monitoring and screening in the future.

Construction Begins to Replace Pilger School Destroyed by Tornado

pilger-tornado-2WISNER, Neb. (AP) — Construction has begun on a new school to replace the one Pilger lost in the 2014 tornado, but it won’t be in that town.

The Wisner-Pilger school district held a groundbreaking ceremony last week for the new building being built in Wisner.

The new $10.7 million school will house elementary and middle school students. It replaces the district’s middle school that was destroyed in Pilger and its elementary school in Wisner.

Insurance money will pay for most of the new school, and the district will also receive help from the federal and state emergency management agencies.

Firefighters Say 2 Dogs Killed in Lincoln House Fire

lincoln-fire-departmentLINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — Firefighters say two dogs have been killed in a Lincoln house fire.

The fire began Friday afternoon when debris or clothing fell into an uncovered opening in a water heater in the home’s basement. The debris caught then caught fire.

Fire officials say the residents weren’t home at the time of the fire, which was extinguished in about 10 minutes.

Fire Inspector Ken Hilger says the fire was mostly contained to the basement and the water heater’s vicinity. He estimated structural damage to the house at $15,000 and content loss at about $1,000.

Omaha Police Sergeant Cited on Suspicion of DUI

omaha-policeOMAHA, Neb. (AP) — An Omaha police sergeant accused of driving drunk and leaving the scene of an accident has been ticketed.

Douglas County Chief Deputy Sheriff Tom Wheeler said 44-year-old Sgt. Mark Noonan was issued a misdemeanor citation last week on suspicion of leaving the scene of property damage and driving under the influence.

A police report says about $1,200 in damage was done around 1 a.m. Aug. 15 when a vehicle drove through two northwest Omaha yards and hit a tree.

Noonan was soon pulled over, based on eyewitness information. He was ticketed and his truck impounded, but he was not taken to jail.

A phone number for Noonan could not be found Saturday, and his case did not appear in online court records Saturday.

2nd Suspect in Omaha Church Robbery, Attack Arrested

Larry Leggett

Larry Leggett

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Police have arrested a second suspect in the case of a 76-year-old woman who was robbed and punched in the face inside an Omaha church.

20-year-old Larry Leggett was arrested Friday afternoon on suspicion of robbery.

That follows the Wednesday arrest of 22-year-old Wayman Clark, who is charged with robbery. Prosecutors say it was Clark who punched the woman.

Surveillance video shows the woman, of Johnston, Iowa, was reading the parish newsletter Sunday morning inside the entrance of St. Cecilia Cathedral when two men entered the church. One stole her purse and the other punched her in the face, causing the woman to hit her head against the side of the table as she fell down.

Clark is being held on $50,000 cash bond.

Howard County Receives Livestock Friendly Designation

Pete Ricketts

Pete Ricketts

ST. PAUL, Neb. (AP) — Howard County has received the state of Nebraska’s “Livestock Friendly” designation for its support of the industry.

Gov. Pete Ricketts says the central Nebraska county is the 33rd to participate in the state program administered by the state Department of Agriculture.

The program gives counties an extra promotional tool to encourage the expansion of current livestock operations and attract new businesses.

Counties that wish to receive the designation must hold a public hearing, and the county board must pass a resolution to apply. A completed application must be submitted to the Nebraska Department of Agriculture.

Omaha Pastor and Wife Among 4 Killed in Fiery Head-On Crash

fatal-accidentALEXANDRIA, S.D. (AP) — An Omaha pastor and his wife are among the four people killed in a fiery head-on crash on Interstate 90 near Alexandria.

The South Dakota Highway Patrol says a pickup truck heading east in the westbound lanes of I-90 about 4:30 p.m. Thursday struck another vehicle head-on, causing both vehicles to burst into flames.

The pickup truck driver, 75-year-old David Wise, of Salem, was killed.

The wreck killed the other vehicle’s driver, 28-year-old Ryan Hrubes, and two passengers, 54-year-old Tyler Schenzel and his 59-year-old wife, Theresa Schenzel. Another passenger, 26-year-old Emily Hrubes, was injured. All are from Omaha.

The crash brought traffic on the interstate to a standstill. Traffic was diverted onto state Highway 38.

Tyler Schenzel is the founder of Omaha’s Hope Center for Kids.