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Watch Now: Fourth night of Fiji demonstrations ends with confrontation between protesters and police
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Watch Now: Fourth night of Fiji demonstrations ends with confrontation between protesters and police

From the What you missed this week in notable Southeast Nebraska crimes and court cases series
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Aug. 28 protests

After protesting for much of the evening outside the Fiji house at 1425 R St., where a sexual assault was reported to have occurred Monday night, hundreds spilled into the streets of downtown Lincoln just before midnight.

Protesters who gathered for the fourth night of demonstrations outside the Phi Gamma Delta fraternity on the University of Nebraska-Lincoln campus clashed with police early Saturday morning.

After protesting for much of the evening outside the Fiji house at 1425 R St., where a sexual assault was reported to have occurred Monday night, hundreds spilled into the streets of downtown Lincoln just before midnight.

After marching through downtown, chanting "No means no" and at times blocking traffic, the demonstration appeared to be winding down as protesters returned to the steps of the Nebraska Union.

Just as many began to leave, however, the crowd was informed that a man had been tased by a Lincoln Police Department officer a few blocks away.

That prompted many of those in the crowd to march back to the area of 11th and O streets, where they confronted officers, surrounded police cars and chanted "No justice, no peace" and "Show your badge."

LPD Capt. Ben Miller confirmed to the Journal Star early Saturday that officers conducted a traffic stop in the area of 12th and O streets just after midnight. The officer approached the driver, 27-year-old Reuben Nyakundi, who refused to provide identification and paperwork for his vehicle.

The officer then asked Nyakundi to get out of the vehicle, but he refused, according to a news release. Other officers were called to the scene, and as Nyakundi resisted efforts to be taken into custody a struggle ensued. Nyakundi kicked an officer in the legs and stomach and punched him in the eye, then another officer used a Taser to assist in arresting Nyakundi.

Nyakundi was transported to a local hospital, as is the case whenever a Taser is used, Miller said.

Miller said the man did not suffer any injuries, and he was released from the hospital a short time later and lodged in the Lancaster County Jail on suspicion of third-degree assault on a police officer, obstructing a police officer, resisting arrest and disobeying a traffic light.

The officer suffered bruising and swelling but did not require medical treatment.

A few minutes after that incident, protesters arrived on the scene and began shouting at officers and surrounding multiple police cars.

Miller said the officers who were there at the time eventually made their way out of the area without further incident, and the protesters dispersed shortly after that.

Friday was the fourth evening of gatherings that included chants and demands directed toward the 19-year-old fraternity member who is accused of sexually assaulting a 17-year-old girl and UNL student.

Third night of Fiji protests focuses on survivors, continues call for cultural reckoning at UNL

Chancellor Ronnie Green temporarily suspended Fiji — already on probation for previous violations of university policy — Wednesday afternoon, about 36 hours after the sexual assault was reported.

The fraternity was put on probation in 2015 for reports of reckless alcohol abuse and sexual misconduct among its members, and it was suspended from 2017-20.

In previous nights, protesters had gathered only steps from the knee-high stone wall that separates the fraternity's lawn from the sidewalk on R Street. Speakers on Friday continued to call for the fraternity's UNL chapter to be abolished.

'I'm angry too' — UNL chancellor responds to calls for justice as new details emerge in Fiji assault case

The university's suspension of the Fiji chapter will launch an investigation of the fraternity as the police investigation into the alleged sexual assault continues.

UNL officials Thursday confirmed that the accuser is a 17-year-old student and University Police are handling the investigation independently.

Relaying information from police, UNL spokeswoman Leslie Reed said the girl went to the Fiji house with an 18-year-old female friend Monday night. The 18-year-old left before the 17-year-old, who later called the friend to pick her up.

The 18-year-old picked up the accuser from 17th and R streets — a block from the fraternity — and took her to Bryan East Campus, Reed said, where they reported a sexual assault to LPD, which turned the case over to UNL police.

Reed said the accuser identified a 19-year-old man as the person who allegedly sexually assaulted her at the fraternity house.

Watch Now: Hundreds protest outside UNL fraternity after reported sexual assault
UNL to temporarily close fraternity where protesters gathered Tuesday night
Crowd calls on UNL chancellor to attend tonight's protest, remove letters from Fiji house
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