THU MAR 26 COVID-19 UPDATES: Nebraska counties confirm 13 more coronavirus cases

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(WOWT) -- Below is a review of Thursday's local, state, and national developments in the COVID-19 outbreak.

9:58 p.m. -- The Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services announced Thursday night there are now 81 confirmed COVID-19 cases in Nebraska.

8:53 p.m. -- The FBI arrested a Southern California man who officials said falsely claimed to have developed a cure for coronavirus. Keith Lawrence Middlebrook told his 2.4 million Instagram followers that his company would return hundreds of millions of dollars in profit.

7:47 p.m. -- Two new cases have been confirmed by the Sarpy/Cass County Health Department; both are Sarpy County residents.

7:19 p.m. -- U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar's husband was released from the hospital where he was being treated for low oxygen and pneumonia as a result of COVID-19.

6:38 p.m. -- U.S. Space Force launches its first national security satellite — in front of a limited crowd. non-essential personnel were banned from the launch control room and the viewing area at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station was closed to visitors.

5:57 p.m. -- Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts tweets his latest executive order allowing alcoholic beverages to be sold by bars and restaurants as "takeout" — with some stipulations in place.

5:27 p.m. -- An Omaha Police officer has tested positive for coronavirus after traveling out of state on vacation. The officer self-quarantined upon his return.

5:18 p.m. -- Douglas County Health Department confirmed four new cases, bringing the state's total to 44.

5:03 p.m. -- The United States has become the nation with the most confirmed COVID-19 cases, according to a Johns Hopkins University tally tracking global cases.

4:15 p.m. -- A church in Italy is being used as a makeshift cemetery. There are 80 places created inside the religious building.

3:31 p.m. -- Boys Town reports its national hotline has seen a jump in calls referencing COVID-19, and a 50% increase in calls about domestic violence.

3 p.m. -- WWE Smackdown, originally scheduled for April 24 at CHI Health Center, has been postponed to Sept. 7. Original tickets will be honored at the rescheduled event. Ticket-holders are asked to refer questions to the arena's box office.

2:30 p.m. -- Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds says during her daily news conference that she has expanded the state's disaster health proclamation.

2 p.m. -- Nebraska Secretary of State Bob Evnen confirms during Gov. Pete Ricketts' news conference that the state primary election will be held May 12, as planned. May 1 is the last day to request a mail-in ballot.

1:07 p.m. -- Douglas County Treasurer's Office reminds residents they can still process payments for vehicle registrations and renewals and property tax payments, due March 31.

1:07 p.m. -- Indianapolis 500 has been postponed from its traditional run over Memorial Day weekend until August.

12:36 p.m -- Italy's new report pushes the total global number of coronavirus cases past the half-million mark.

12:25 p.m. -- Ahead of Gov. Kim Reynolds' daily live news conference, Iowa confirms 34 more cases, bringing the state's case total to 179 positive cases.

12:21 p.m. -- Fiat Chrysler, Honda, and Toyota join Ford in its push to restart American auto factories that have been closed to protect workers from exposure.

9:35 a.m. -- Speaker of the House Pelosi and Republican leaders said representatives will give final approval to the massive $2.2 trillion economic rescue bill today. Lawmakers were planning to bless the measure by a voice vote, probably with just a sprinkling of them present in the chamber.

9 a.m. -- Washington County officials conduct a live update on their COVID-19 response efforts.

8:46 a.m. -- Stocks are opening broadly higher on Wall Street after the Senate approved the $2.2 trillion economic relief bill. Major indexes were up more than 2% in early trading, headine for a three-day rally.

7:55 a.m. -- Ford wants to reopen five North American assembly and parts-making plants in April. Two union workers from Fiat Chrysler plants in the Detroit area and Kokomo, Ind., have died this week from complications due to the virus, but it's not clear whether they got it at the factories or elsewhere.

7:33 a.m. -- U.S. jobless claims soar to a record 3.3 million — nearly five times the previous record set in 1982 — as layoffs jump, according to the Associated Press.

6:02 a.m. -- A Missouri man who was allegedly plotting a bombing is dead after a shooting incident with the FBI. Federal authorities said Timothy Watson, 36, was reportedly upset with the government’s actions toward the spread of coronavirus and was planning a bombing at a Kansas City-area hospital providing critical care during the pandemic.

5:29 a.m. -- Global stocks lower after U.S. Senate approves aid package.

3:21 a.m. -- Amid criticism that the world's wealthiest countries have not taken cohesive action to combat the virus or its economic impact on people around the world, leaders of 20 nations will convene virtually Thursday to try to coordinate a response.


RELATED: More coverage | Case map | Metro exposure sites | INFO

Thursday's planned livestreams


  • 9 a.m. -- Blair & Washington County update [WATCH]
  • 2 p.m. -- Update from Gov. Pete Ricketts and other Nebraska officials [WATCH]
  • 2:30 p.m. -- Update from Gov. Kim Reynolds and other Iowa officials [WATCH]
  • 3:30 p.m. -- Omaha & Douglas County update [WATCH
  • 4 p.m. -- White House Coronavirus Task Force [WATCH