Mathew Place

Lincoln Police cars filled the cul-de-sac in the 8100 block of Mathew Place on Friday morning after a standoff there ended with a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

A grand jury has found no criminal wrongdoing in the recent deaths of four prison inmates and a Lincoln man who shot himself as police entered his home during a standoff Dec. 28.

According to the initial reports, filed at the Lancaster County District Court Clerk's office, inmates Daniel Stetter, Elijah Jones, Roger Schmidt Sr. and Benjamin Oates II all died of natural causes as the result of illnesses.

Stetter, 57, died Nov. 23 at a Lincoln hospital as a result of lung cancer. He had been at the Nebraska State Penitentiary serving a South Dakota sentence for manslaughter, two counts of first-degree assault and driving intoxicated for a 1991 crash that killed one person and injured two others.

Jones, 74, died Sept. 10 at the State Penitentiary as a result of liver disease, Hepatitis C and pancreatic cancer. He had been serving a life sentence on a murder charge in Douglas County.

Schmidt, 74, died at the State Penitentiary on Dec. 19 as a result of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. He was serving a sentence for first-degree sexual assault of a child convictions in Jefferson County.

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Oates, 62, died July 7 at a Lincoln hospital as a result of urethral cancer. He had been serving a sentence for attempted sexual assault conviction in Douglas County.

The grand jury also reviewed the Dec. 28 death of Bryce Miller, 45, at his home in the 8100 block of Mathew Place, ruling it a suicide.

Police were called to his home that morning on a report that Miller was threatening to kill himself. It led to a brief standoff with police. When they went into the home through an unlocked door, they heard a single gunshot and found Miller in the basement with a wound to the head.

His death was reviewed by a grand jury as required by state law whenever someone dies in police custody or the presence of officers.

The grand jury reviewed all of the cases on Friday.

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Reach the writer at 402-473-7237 or lpilger@journalstar.com.

On Twitter @LJSpilger.


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