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Omaha man released from jail, rearrested on same day

April 9, 2019

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — An Omaha man who was released ahead of his sentencing hearing on allegations that he attacked a jail guard is back behind bars after failing to report to a treatment center.

Bruce McGrone, 54, pleaded no contest Friday to felony assault for the Nov. 8 attack on Douglas County Jail corrections officer Stacie Wilkins. Douglas County District Judge Peter Bataillon on Friday ruled that McGrone could be released from jail without having to pay his $50,000 bail and would stay at the Salvation Army Adult Rehabilitation Center in Omaha until his June 17 sentencing hearing.

McGrone was released Monday morning, but was rearrested Monday evening after failing to report to the treatment center.

Lt. Dave Aldrich, president of Nebraska Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 8, thanked the Douglas County Attorney’s Office for quickly seeking a new arrest warrant for McGrone.

Aldrich said he didn’t understand why Bataillon released McGrone, saying the decision disregarded and disrespected correctional officers. According to court records, McGrone punched Wilkins in the face, pulled a handful of hair out of her head and attempted to choke her. He faces up to three years in prison for the assault.

“We anticipated that he wouldn’t show up,” Aldrich said. “We knew by his being booked into jail 177 times. He doesn’t follow rules. Why would he follow this one?”

Bataillon declined to comment.

Aldrich said the November assault was one of the worst he’s seen in more than 20 years as a corrections officer.

“This was just not a punch or a kick,” Aldrich said. “It was a potential attempted murder charge because of what took place during the entirety of this assault.”