22 June 2018 :
Lancaster County District Judge Jodi Nelson: Nebraska officials must release some death penalty records. Judge Nelson has ordered the state to release records of communications with its lethal-injection drug supplier as well as several other documents related to Nebraska's efforts to carry out the death penalty. As Nebraska gets ready for what could be the 1st execution in 20 years, Judge Nelson said the state Department of Correctional Services is to disclose the documents to the Lincoln Journal Star, Omaha World-Herald and the ACLU of Nebraska within seven days of the order. But she found certain other documents are exempt from disclosure under a state law protecting the identities of members of the state's execution team. Those documents include purchase orders and chemical analysis reports. Either side could appeal, given that neither got everything it sought, and the state says it will - a move that likely will delay release of the records. The state wanted to withhold all the records, and the news organizations and civil liberties group wanted them all to be released. Suzanne Gage, a spokeswoman for the Attorney General's office, said they are pleased the court agreed that the Corrections Department is not required to disclose records that identify execution team members. "We respectfully disagree with the court's analysis on the remaining records and plan to appeal," she said in an email. On the other side, Dave Bundy, editor of the Journal Star, said: "The legal wrangling probably isn't over, but we view Judge Nelson's decision as a victory for the people of Nebraska, not just the media."