By Sandy Schroth

Alternate judge finds Neligh man guilty of third-degree assault


Michael D. Wright, appeared in front of the Honorable Ross Stoffer, in the Antelope County courtroom in Neligh last Wednesday, May 1, for further arraignment on a Class 1 misdemeanor charge of third-degree domestic assault, alleged March 17 in Neligh.

Taylor passed the case to Stoffer, alluding to a possible conflict of interest March 20, when Wright, appeared for arraignment.

Wright, who had been granted a continuance when he appeared in March, so he could consult an attorney, appeared without one. He waived his right to counsel and, pursuant to a plea agreement, entered a no contest plea to an amended count, third-degree assault, still a Class 3 misdemeanor with a potential sentence of up to $1,000 fine and/or up to one year incarceration. Smith agreed to recommend probation.

Stoffer ordered a presentence investigation report and set sentencing for July 3 at 1:30 p.m. Bond conditions were reviewed and, after hearing from Amy Wright, Stoffer removed a condition for no contact. Amy Wright told Stoffer that her husband had stopped drinking and was getting counseling. Wright said he was addressing his issues and wanted to go home.

“I’ve caused enough pain to my family,” he said.

Stoffer also granted Wright’s request to travel out of state to deal with his mother’s medical issues.

Smith had no objections to the changes. Stoffer warned Wright about the effects of failure to follow bond conditions.


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