|Former Minatare police chief loses certification|
|July 29, 2015 Jerry Purvis|
As the Minatare Police Department works back toward full strength, its former chief has accepted a plea agreement to surrender his law enforcement certification.
Robert Regester, who had been Minatareís Police Chief for the past 12 years, had been suspended in February by the Nebraska Law Enforcement Training Center (NLETC). They said they had not received updated documentation from Regester that he completed his firearms certification training and 20 hours of continuing education. Two other officers were also suspended, but were later reinstated.
Register resigned his position in a letter to the city council on April 16. But then Regester was charged in Scotts Bluff County Court with alleged doctoring of official documents to show he had completed his required recertification. The falsified documents were then submitted to NLETC on official Minatare letterhead. NLETC then asked the Nebraska Attorney Generalís Office to file charges.
During his pre-trial hearing, Regester pleaded not guilty to four charges of Abuse of Public Records and one charge of Making a False Statement Under Oath.
After a postponement so Regester could arrange for counsel, a hearing date was set for July 29. Before that could happen, Regester accepted a plea agreement and entered pleas of no contest to the charges.
Under the terms of the agreement, he will voluntarily surrender his law enforcement certification in Nebraska and will pay a $1,000 fine for each of four counts of the indictment.
A fifth charge of making a false statement under oath was dismissed as part of the deal.