A 51-year-old Lincoln man who had been the topic of a narcotics investigation was caught Thursday with almost a pound of suspected methamphetamine, based on police.
Lincoln-Lancaster County Narcotics Activity Drive investigators contacted Jesse Cervantes at a grocery retailer close to seventeenth and Washington streets round 9:17 p.m. Thursday, Lincoln Police Sgt. Chris Vollmer mentioned.
Investigators served a search warrant on the 51-year-old’s automobile and located 444.5 grams of suspected meth, Vollmer mentioned.
He was arrested on suspicion of possession of methamphetamine with intent to ship and brought to the Lancaster County jail.
Tom Casady’s listing of the ten most notorious crimes in Lincoln historical past
Crimes of the occasions
That is merely one man’s perspective from the early twenty first century (first written in 2010). I needed to decide about crimes that occurred at areas which might be inside the town in the present day, however had been exterior our company limits on the time they occurred. I selected the latter.
Earlier than starting, although, I’ve to cope with three crimes that stand aside: the murders of three cops in Lincoln. I’m not fairly certain how one can place them in a listing. All of them had big impacts on the neighborhood, and on the police division particularly. As a result of these are my colleagues, I cope with them individually and in chronological order.
Patrolman Marion Francis Marshall
Shot within the shadow of the brand new Nebraska State Capital, Gov. Charles Bryan got here to his support and summoned further assist.
Marion Marshall was technically not a Lincoln police officer, so Lt. Soukup was truly the primary Lincoln police officer killed on responsibility. Certainly one of his colleagues who was current on the motel and concerned within the gunbattle, Paul Jacobsen, went on to take pleasure in a protracted profession and command rank at LPD, influencing many younger costs (like me) and leaving his mark on the tradition of the company.
Within the house of some months, three LPD officers died within the line of responsibility. Frank Soukup had been murdered, and George Welter had died in a bike crash. Paul Whitehead’s associate, Paul Merritt, went on to command rank, and like Paul Jacobsen left an indelible mark at LPD and the neighborhood.
No. 1: Starkweather
The topic of a number of thinly disguised film plots and a Springsteen album, the Starkweather murders are clearly probably the most notorious crime in Lincoln’s historical past — thus far. One of many first mass murderers of the mass media age, six of Charles Starkweather’s 11 victims had been killed inside the town of Lincoln, and the primary was simply on the outskirts of city. I didn’t stay in Lincoln on the time, however my spouse was a first-grader at Riley Elementary College and has vivid recollections of the town gripped by worry within the days between the invention of the Bartlett murders and Starkweather’s seize in Wyoming.
The case prompted fairly an uproar. There was intense criticism of the police division and sheriff’s workplace for not capturing Starkweather earlier within the week after the invention of the Bartletts’ our bodies. Finally, Mayor Bennett Martin and the Lancaster County Board of Commissioners retained a retired FBI agent, Harold G. Robinson, to analyze the efficiency of native legislation enforcement. His report basically exonerated the native legislation officers and made a number of vanilla suggestions for bettering inter-agency communication and coaching.
Now I do know that many readers are mumbling to themselves “how apparent.” Maintain your horses, although. It’s not fairly as apparent as you would possibly assume. I had two experiences that drove this truth dwelling to me. The primary was a go to by a small group of journalism college students. Just one member of the category had any concept, and her concept was fairly imprecise. It’s good to keep in mind that the Starkweather murders had been in 1957 and 1958 — earlier than the mother and father of many school college students had been even born.
The second expertise was a go to by a Cub Scout den. I used to be giving the youngsters a tour of the police station one night. We had been within the entrance foyer ready for everybody to reach. As I entertained the boys, I informed the mothers and dads that they could take pleasure in trying within the nook of the Sheriff’s Workplace show case to see the contents of Starkweather’s pockets — found a few years in the past locked up within the Lancaster County Sheriff’s Workplace secure. After a couple of minutes, one of many confused fathers requested me who Starkweather was, and why it was important.
No. 2: Lincoln Nationwide Financial institution
On the morning of Sept. 17, 1930, a darkish blue Buick carrying six males pulled up in entrance of the Lincoln Nationwide Financial institution on the northwest nook of twelfth and O streets. 5 of the boys entered the financial institution, whereas a sixth stood exterior by the Buick, cradling a machine gun. Observing the bizarre occasions, a passerby referred to as the police. The officer who responded, Forrest Shappaugh, was casually instructed by the machine-gun-toting lookout to simply hold going, which he correctly did. Returning with reinforcements, he discovered that the robbers had already made good on their getaway, netting $2.7 million in money and negotiable securities.
Finally, three of the six suspects had been arrested. Tommy O’Connor and Howard Lee had been convicted and sentenced. Jack Britt was tried twice however not convicted by a hung jury. Gus Winkeler, a member of Al Capone’s gang, winged a cope with County Legal professional Max Towle to keep away from prosecution in change for orchestrating the restoration of $600,000 in bearer bonds. The next yr, Winkeler was murdered in Chicago, the sufferer of a gangland slaying. The ultimate two robbers had been by no means recognized.
The Lincoln Nationwide Financial institution theft stood as the biggest money financial institution theft in the US for a lot of a long time. It precipitated main adjustments on the Lincoln Police Division. Chief Peter Johnstone was quickly “retired” after the theft, the division’s fleet was upgraded so as to add the primary official patrol vehicles, the total power was armed and a shotgun squad was organized. Forty-four years later after I was employed at LPD, the echo of the Lincoln Nationwide Financial institution theft was nonetheless evident in every day financial institution opening particulars, and within the Thomspon submachine weapons and Reising rifles that detectives grabbed each time the theft alarm sounded at headquarters.
No. 3: The Final Posse
My first inkling about this crime got here after I was the chief deputy sheriff. Certainly one of my interns, a younger man named Ron Boden (who turned a veteran deputy sheriff), had been performing some analysis on Lancaster County’s solely identified lynching, in 1884. I got here throughout a reference within the biography of the sheriff on the time, Sam Melick, to the homicide of the Nebraska Penitentiary warden and subsequent jail break. Melick had been appointed interim warden after the homicide and instituted a number of reforms.
A number of years later, a colleague, Sgt. Geoff Marti, loaned me an excellent e-book, Gale Christianson’s “Final Posse,” that informed the story of the 1912 jail break in gory, haunting and superb element.
To make a protracted story quick, convict Shorty Grey and his co-conspirators shot and killed Warden James Delahunty, a deputy warden and a guard on Wednesday, March 13, 1912. They then made their break — proper into the enamel of a brutal Nebraska spring blizzard. Over the course to the following few days, a posse pursued. In the course of the pursuit, the escapees carjacked a younger farmer together with his crew and wagon. Because the posse closed in, a gunfight broke out and the hostage was shot and killed within the change, together with two of the three escapees.
There was loads of anger among the many locals within the Gretna-Springfield neighborhood in regards to the demise of their native son, and an issue raged over the legislation enforcement ways that led to his demise. Lancaster County Sheriff Gus Hyers was not unsullied by the inquiry, though it seems from my prospect a century later that the fog of struggle led to the tragedy.
Christianson, a professor of historical past at Indiana State College who died earlier this yr, notes the next on the flyleaf:
“For anybody residing west of the Mississippi in 1912, the most important information that fateful yr was a violent escape from the Nebraska state penitentiary deliberate and carried out by a trio of infamous robbers and secure blowers.”
Greater information on half the continent than the sinking of the Titanic throughout the identical yr will surely qualify this murder-escape as some of the notorious Lincoln crimes in historical past.
No. 4: Rock Island wreck
The Aug. 10, 1894, wreck of a Rock Island practice on the southwest outskirts of Lincoln was virtually misplaced within the mist of time till it was resurrected within the public consciousness by writer Joel Williams, who got here throughout the story whereas conducting analysis for his historic novel, “Barrelhouse Boys.”
The wreck was decided to be the results of sabotage to the tracks, maybe an try and derail the practice as a prelude to theft. Eleven individuals died within the crash and ensuing hearth, making this a mass homicide, to make certain. G.W. Davis was arrested and convicted of the crime however later acquired a full pardon. The story was informed in higher element earlier this yr by the Lincoln Journal Star.
A historic marker is alongside the Rock Island Path in Wilderness Park, accessible solely by foot or bike from the closest path entry factors a couple of half-mile away at Outdated Cheney Street on the north, or 14th Avenue on the south.
Right here’s the massive query that is still unanswered: Was there actually important proof to show that George Washington Davis dedicated the crime, or was he only a handy scapegoat? The truth that he acquired a gubernatorial pardon 10 years later leads me to imagine that the proof will need to have been unusually weak. If he was railroaded, then my second query is that this: who actually pried unfastened the tracks with the 40-pound crowbar discovered on the scene?
No. 5: Commonwealth
On Nov. 1, 1983, the doorways to Nebraska’s largest industrial financial savings and mortgage firm had been closed and Commonwealth was declared bancrupt. The 6,700 depositors with $65 million at stake would by no means be totally compensated for his or her loss, finally receiving about 59 cents on the greenback for his or her deposits, which all of them mistakenly believed had been insured as much as $30,000 via the Nebraska Depository Insurance coverage Warranty Company, which was basically an insurance coverage pool with belongings of solely $3 million.
The case dominated Nebraska news for months. The investigation finally led to the conviction of three members of the distinguished Lincoln household that owned the establishment, the resignation of the director of the State Division of Banking and the impeachment of the Nebraska legal professional normal and the suspension of his license to follow legislation. State and federal litigation arising from the failure of Commonwealth drug on for years.
On the Lincoln Police Division, the Commonwealth failure led to the formation of a specialised white-collar crime element, now often known as the Technical Investigations Unit. On the time, municipal police departments in the US had just about no capability for investigating monetary crime and fraud of this magnitude, and we rapidly turned well-known for our experience on this space. The early expertise served LPD very nicely within the guaranteeing years.
No. 6: Candice Harms
Candi Harms by no means got here dwelling from visiting her boyfriend on Sept. 22, 1992. Her mother and father reported her as a lacking particular person the next morning, and her automobile was discovered deserted in a cornfield north of Lincoln later within the day. Weeks glided by earlier than her stays had been discovered southeast of Lincoln.
Scott Barney and Roger Bjorklund had been convicted in her abduction and homicide. Barney is in jail serving a life time period. Bjorklund died in jail in 2001. Intense media attention surrounded the prolonged trial of Roger Bjorklund, for which a jury was introduced in from Cheyenne County as an alternative choice to a change of venue. I’ve little doubt that the trial was a life-changing occasion for a bunch of fine residents from Sidney, who did their civic responsibility.
I used to be the Lancaster County sheriff on the time, concerned each within the investigation and within the trial safety. It was at about this time that the mobile phone was turning into a client product, and I’ve usually thought that this brutal crime most likely spurred a whole lot of purchases. Throughout my profession, that is most likely the second-most-prominent Lincoln crime by way of the sheer quantity of media protection.
No. 7: Jon Simpson and Jacob Surber
A guardian’s worst nightmare unfolded in September 1975 when these two boys, ages 12 and 13, did not return from the Nebraska State Truthful. The boys had been the victims of abduction and homicide. The case was much like a string of different murders of younger boys within the Midwest, and plenty of thought that these circumstances had been associated — the work of a serial killer. Though an arrest was made within the case right here in Lincoln, the fees had been ultimately dismissed. William Guatney was launched and has since died.
No. 8: John Sheedy
Saloon and playing home proprietor John Sheedy was gunned down exterior his dwelling at 1211 P St. in January 1891. The case of Sheedy, distinguished in Lincoln’s demiworld, turned the speak of the city when his spouse, Mary, and her alleged lover and confederate, Monday McFarland, had been arrested. Each had been acquitted at trial. The Sheedy homicide is chronicled in an excellent interactive multimedia web site, Gilded Age Plains City, an internet model that builds upon an article revealed in 2001 by Timothy Mahoney of the College of Nebraska.
No. 9: Patricia McGarry and Catherine Brooks
The our bodies of those two mates had been present in a Northeast Lincoln duplex in August 1977. Their assassin, Robert E. Williams, was the topic of an enormous Midwest manhunt throughout the next week. Earlier than his seize, he dedicated a 3rd homicide in Sioux Rapids, Iowa, and raped, shot and left for useless a sufferer who survived in Minnesota. He’s the final man to be executed in Nebraska, despatched to the electrical chair in 1997.
No. 10: Decide William M. Morning
District Court docket Decide William Morning was murdered in February 1924. He was shot on the bench by an sad litigant in a divorce case. His court docket reporter, Minor Bacon, was additionally shot, however a pocket book in his breast pocket deflected the bullet and saved his life.
Many different crimes
Selecting Lincoln’s 10 most notorious crimes was a problem. Though the highest two had been straightforward, the image rapidly turned clouded. We have a tendency, after all, to neglect our historical past moderately rapidly. Most of the crimes I felt had been among the many most important are barely remembered in the present day, if not fully forgotten.
Some readers will take difficulty with my listing. In selecting 10, listed below are the others I thought-about, in no explicit order. They’re all murders:
— Victoria Lamm and Janet Mesner
— Regina Bos (presumably murdered)
I additionally thought in regards to the 5 murder-suicides wherein a mom or father killed a number of members of the family earlier than taking their very own life. Although tragic, these crimes didn’t command the identical form of consideration because the others, maybe as a result of there was no prolonged investigation, no tantalizing whodunit, no stranger-killer, nor any of the small print that come out within the protection of a serious trial.