May 1: Lawsuits, NFL draft and Trump rally
Trump hosts Save America Rally in Nebraska
Former President Donald Trump was met with “We love Trump” chants from the crowd when he came to Greenwood to rally supporters on May 1. Charles Herbster, who Trump has endorsed for governor, also spoke at the event. The rally was originally set for April 29 but moved to May 1 due to severe weather conditions.
Gubernatorial Candidate Charles Herbster sues Sen. Slama, Slama countersues
Charles W. Herbster, who is running for governor, filed a defamation lawsuit in Johnson County against Sen. Julie Slama of Sterling April 22. He is suing for slander per se, and the amount he is suing for is to be decided upon during trial. This comes after eight women, including Slama, alleged that Herbster sexually assaulted them. “As set forth in my lawsuit, the false accusations and attacks on my character are part of a greater scheme calculated to try and defeat my candidacy,” Herbster said in a statement. “I will not stop fighting until the truth is told and my name is cleared.” Slama filed a countersuit April 25 seeking damages for “the sexual battery she suffered,” her attorney, Dave Lopez, said in a news release. “We will not permit Charles Herbster to file a frivolous, bad faith lawsuit that purports to cast doubt on Sen. Slama’s account of her sexual assault,” he said. Lopez said Herbster has made no move to serve Slama with the lawsuit. He said he believes Herbster wants to be able to herald the lawsuit’s existence to the media, but he does not want to serve it because doing so would mean he would have to take accountability in a court of law.
Husker football players drafted for NFL
Former Husker center Cam Jurgens of Beatrice joined the Philadelphia Eagles April 29 to become the first Husker drafted for the NFL since 2019. He was selected in the second round as the 51st overall pick. That same day, Husker cornerback Cam Taylor-Britt was drafted by the Cincinnati Bengals as the 60th overall pick. April 30, defensive tackle Damion Daniels signed with Houston Texas, tight end Austin Allen signed with the New York Giants, safety Deontai Williams signed with the Seattle Seahawks, linebacker Jojo Domann signed with the Indianapolis Colts and defensive lineman Ben Stille signed with the Miami Dolphins.
Progress made in containing Nebraska wildfire
The Nebraska Emergency Management Agency said in a statement a deadly southwestern Nebraska wildfire is at 88% containment as of April 28. The Road 702 fire, which has burned about 68 square miles of land, has been ablaze since April 22. This development comes thanks to more than 220 firefighters and other personnel who have been working to dig trenches and create other fire breaks to contain the fire.
State sen. Rich Pahls dies in battle with cancer
Nebraska Sen. Rich Pahls, 78, of Omaha died the morning of April 27 due to cancer complications. Pahls, who represented Millard’s District 31, was elected to the legislature in 2020 and had previously served two terms between 2005 and 2013 before being a part of the Omaha City Council for eight years. Pahls was unable to attend the last few weeks of the legislative session due to his cancer battle, but he did get to see his priority bill, which extended how bonds could be repaid at CHI Health Center in Omaha, pass. “Just received word that my friend and colleague who I sat next to on the legislative floor, Sen. Rich Pahls, has passed away,” Sen. Adam Morfeld of Lincoln said in a tweet. “Deeply saddened. He was a very thoughtful, intelligent, and dedicated public servant. He will be greatly missed.” Gov. Pete Ricketts announced all flags across the state to be flown at half-staff immediately.
2022 Nebraska Passport program kicks off
The 2022 Nebraska Passport program began May 1. The Nebraska Passport is filled with places for people to visit including museums, parks, wineries, retail stores and more. Upon visiting, people who participate will get stamps on their physical passports or can get digital stamps through the Nebraska Passport App. They can turn in their stamped passports for prizes. Last year, over 48,000 passport booklets were requested. The program will run through Sept. 30, and passports can be found at all 70 stops or can be ordered at nebraskapassport.com.
State Patrol arrests Beatrice State Development Center employee for sexually assaulting patient
The Nebraska State Patrol arrested Beatrice State Development Center employee Allen Evans, 30, of Beatrice on April 25 in relation to an October 2020 sexual assault of a patient. The incident was reported to the state patrol and was investigated with the help of the Nebraska State Patrol Crime Lab. Evans is being held at Gage County Detention Center and is facing charges of first-degree sexual assault and tampering with evidence.