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KGFW News

  • Governor appeals to public to help flip death penalty repeal vote

    (AP) - Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts is ramping up pressure on lawmakers to try to keep them from overriding his promised veto of a death penalty repeal bill. The Republican governor urged the public on Friday to contact their state senator and voice their support for capital punishment. Lawmakers gave the repeal bill final approval on Wednesday with a 32-15 vote. At least 30 votes are needed to override a gubernatorial veto, so Ricketts has to flip at least three. Ricketts says he has argued to several lawmakers that the Nebraskans he talks to overwhelmingly support the death penalty, and prosecutors need it to protect public safety. Ricketts has argued that lawmakers are out of touch with the public. Death penalty opponents are working to ensure that support for the bill holds. Read More
  • State senators urge EPA to keep biofuels in RFS

    (AP) - Nebraska senators are pushing the Environmental Protection Agency to hold its support for renewable fuels when drafting rules that could limit amounts of ethanol blended with gasoline for fuel. Forty-two of Nebraska's 49 senators signed a letter sent to EPA administrator Gina McCarthy Thursday, urging her to consider the impact of modifying the market for the ethanol industry that contributes $5 billion annually to the state's economy. Supporters worry oil companies are lobbying to decrease the amounts of ethanol required in fuel under the Renewable Fuel Standard. The letter says the Nebraska ethanol industry employs more than 1,300 workers and supports 3,300 other jobs. The EPA is expected to release oil industry draft rules for 2016 on June 1. Read More
  • State Supreme Court upholds Guide Rock woman's life sentence

    (AP) - The Nebraska Supreme Court has affirmed the life sentence of a woman who killed her boyfriend's 68-year-old mother in 2013. The high court on Friday rejected 42-year-old Shelley Casterline's appeal argument that the sentencing judge did not follow state law in sentencing her to life for her conviction of second-degree murder in the stabbing death of Virginia Barone. Investigators say the women had been arguing before Barone's death. An autopsy shows Barone was stabbed twice in the back and 20 times in the chest and torso. Casterline's 24-year-old son, Andrew Casterline, was convicted of first-degree murder and other crimes in Barone's death and also sentenced to life in prison. Read More
  • Funeral services set for Omaha police officer

    (AP) - Funeral arrangements have been set for Omaha Police Officer Kerrie Orozco, who was shot and killed in the line of duty Wednesday. Visitation for Omaha police officers and close friends of Orozco's will be held from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Monday at St. John's Catholic Church at Creighton University. Acquaintances and the public will be invited to visitation from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Monday at the church. A vigil will follow at 7 p.m. Orozco's funeral will be 11 a.m. Tuesday at St. John's Church, with additional seating and video of the ceremony provided at the CenturyLink Center in downtown Omaha. Burial will follow at St. Joseph Cemetery in Council Bluffs, Iowa. Read More
  • State senators pass bill allowing study of cannabis extract and treatment of seizures

    (AP) - Nebraska residents suffering from intractable seizures could have one more treatment option under a medical cannabis study headed to Gov. Pete Ricketts' desk. Senators voted 44-2 on Thursday to commission a University of Nebraska Medical Center study on the effectiveness of cannabidiol, a cannabis extract, in treating severe epileptic seizures. Nebraska would obtain cannabidiol from an England-based company authorized by the Federal Drug Administration for rare diseases. Supporters say the study could provide immediate aid to patients who have exhausted other treatment options. Ricketts' spokesman says the governor supports FDA-approved studies of marijuana for medical purposes. Ricketts has five days to take action on the bill, sponsored by Sen. Sue Crawford of Bellevue. Read More