Weekend Verdict In Sex Assault Case

Guilty on two counts, not guilty on two counts -- The seven-woman, five-man jury found 54-year-old Cecil Even Jr. guilty of attempted first degree sexual assault of a child, a Class II Felony, and sexual assault of a child, a Class IIIA Felony.

The Class II Felony conviction is punishable by one to 50 years in prison and the IIIA conviction carries up to five years.

The jury acquitted the Plattsmouth man of two other Class II Felonies. Both of those alleged first degree (penetration) sexual assault.

Plattsmouth Police arrested Even last August. At the time of the defendant’s arrest, police said the assaults occurred over a six-year span and involved the same female who is now 15 years old.

The Cass County District Court jury was selected last Wednesday morning and opening arguments were heard Wednesday afternoon. Closing arguments wrapped up Friday evening and the jury deliberated for about 30 minutes Friday before being sent home for the night. Deliberations resumed at 8:30am in a rare Saturday session. (A full schedule for the judge this week necessitated the Saturday deliberations.) Court officials were notified about 1:35pm Saturday there was a verdict.

The Cassgram reports Clerk of the District Court Barb Prokupek read the jury’s findings and, at the request of defense counsel Angela Minehan, each juror was polled and responded affirmatively that they were in agreement with the announced verdict.

Minehan asked District Court Judge Randall Rehmeier to set aside the verdict but Rehmeier said that from the evidence presented at trial there “certainly was a basis for the rendering of the verdicts on all counts.”

Minehan and the prosecuting attorney, Cass County Chief Deputy County Attorney Colin Palm, declined comment on the case.

A pre-sentence report was ordered. Sentencing will be June 7th. Even remains free on $250,000 bond.

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