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American citizens file complaint against ICE in Omaha sting

Two U.S. citizens plan to sue the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency for searching and detaining them in an Omaha parking lot last April. Arquimides Bautista, 20, and Rosalba Artimas, 46, say they were detained while on a bus trip with 40 colleagues from Denver to Omaha for an Amway business convention. The incident began after ICE agents overheard the group speaking Spanish at a local...

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Suttle won’t resign

Mayor Jim Suttle said Nov. 18 he will not resign if a petition drive succeeds in forcing a recall election. The group looking to recall the mayor has until 5 p.m. on Nov. 19 to turn in nearly 27,000 valid signatures. If successful, Suttle would then have the option of resigning or facing a recall election early next year that could cost the city as much as $900,000.

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Public parks get private foundation

Mayor Jim Suttle announced on Nov. 18 the formation of a new non-profit organization devoted to helping the city maintain and improve its public parks. The Omaha Parks Foundation, staffed by citizens, will seek private donations to support the city's 250 parks. Similar private-public partnerships have been used in New York, Seattle and Vancouver.

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Sarpy daycare provider arrested

A local daycare owner is out of business and in the custody of the Sarpy County Sheriff's Department following a suspected case of child abuse last week. Diane Honaker, 50, is accused of shaking a 6-month-old girl after the Children's Hospital & Medical Center reported injuries consistent with shaken baby syndrome to local authorities on Nov. 12. Honaker, who operated a daycare service out of...

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Buffett wins Medal of Freedom

Omaha's most famous citizen can now add the nation's highest civilian honor to his already distinguished resume. The White House announced Nov. 16 that Warren Buffett is among 15 honorees who will receive the Medal of Freedom from President Barack Obama at a ceremony early next year. The award is presented annually for "especially meritorious contributions to the security or national interests...

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Omaha man gets life sentence for actress’ murder

Patrick Bauldwin, 46, received a life sentence on Nov. 17 for the Feb. 26, 2006 murder of local actress Passinetta Fitzgerald. Fitzgerald was found strangled and savagely beaten in her home at 41st and Lake more than four years ago. Bauldwin, who was once engaged to Fitzgerald, was arrested in June of 2009. Investigators determined that Bauldwin's blood was present on the clothing Fitzgerald was...

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MCC boosts sustainable energy program

Metropolitan Community College is poised to train the next generation of sustainable energy and renewable technology workers, after receiving a $318,000 grant from the Nebraska Energy Office. The school plans to complete a new solar training lab — heated entirely through solar power — by 2011 at its South Omaha campus. MCC will begin offering degree and certificate programs in solar and...

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Finding Middle Ground

Ask Chuck Hagel where American politics is headed and he’ll tell you to forget all the party rhetoric, all the headlines touting a fierce red-blue divide, and focus on the middle. It’s a spot the former Nebraska senator knows well. In the waning years of his two-term Senate career, Hagel was rumored first as a 2008 Republican presidential candidate, then as a potential running mate for...

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