Nebraska Releases 306 Inmates By Mistake After Miscalculating Sentences

| by Sarah Fruchtnicht

The Nebraska Department of Corrections released hundreds of inmates early due to sentencing miscalculations, and now they want to send the released back to jail.

Gov. Dave Heineman and Attorney General Jon Bruning announced Friday that 306 inmates have been released early by Correctional Services since 1995.

After officials discovered the error, more than 500 inmates had their discharge dates changed, some by more than 20 years. One inmate serving eight years will now serve life in prison.

"They made a mistake and now we're correcting it, and they better not make a mistake in the future," Heineman said at a press conference Friday.

"The bad guys need to be locked up, and they will be locked up," he added.

"The case law is clear; they owe us the time," Bruning said.

Not everyone released early will be locked up again. Those who have reintegrated in the community without incident will be given credit for that time, KLKN-TV reported.

About 25 inmates will be re-incarcerated after arrest warrants were issued in eight counties. Others qualify for furlough programs. One is being paroled.

Dept. of Correctional Services Director Mike Kenney took full responsibility for the errors and says he is actively working to fix the problem.

Bruning and Heineman said a lawsuit has already been filed against the DOC, and they expect more to come.

"We have an obligation to carry out that sentence even though a mistake was made," Heineman said of the inmate now serving life in prison.

Sources: KLKN-TV, RT