Ex-Seward County deputy pleads not guilty to manslaughter (2024)

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  • Lori Pilger
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Ex-Seward County deputy pleads not guilty to manslaughter (1)

Lori Pilger

A former Seward County Sheriff's Office deputy made his first court appearance Monday and pleaded not guilty to manslaughter in connection to the fatalshooting of a man on Interstate 80last October.

Anthony Gann resigned from the sheriff's office followinga grand jury indictment, which came down late Thursday afternoon and accuses him of killing Jorge Santana-Ramirez on Oct. 23 without malice upon a sudden quarrel.

Ex-Seward County deputy pleads not guilty to manslaughter (2)

Gann, 28, turned himself in on the charge and since has posted bond. His percentage bond, set by a district court judge at $100,000, meant he needed to pay $10,000.

On Monday, Gann's attorney, Clarence Mock, said: "Fortunately, we have law enforcement officers who are willing to confront extremely dangerous situations to protect us every day."

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He said officers must make split-second decisions during stressful circ*mstances based on incomplete or ambiguous information.

"We believe the evidence will show, based on the totality of the circ*mstances and information Officer Gann possessed at the time of his encounter with Mr. Ramirez, that Officer Gann acted reasonably in accordance with Nebraska law in taking steps to stop the threat posed by Mr. Ramirez, not just to Officer Gann, but to his fellow officer at the scene and others traveling on the interstate in the area at that time," Mock said.

According to a search warrant, on the afternoon of Oct. 23, a Seward County deputy tried to stop a driver, later identified as 43-year-old Santana-Ramirez,for speeding near the Milford exit on I-80.

It led to a pursuit and the Honda CivicSantana-Ramirez was driving eventually stopped in Lancaster County.

In court records, Nebraska State Patrol Investigator Jason Bauer said a female passenger got out, but Santana-Ramirez stayed in the car.

"The deputy stated he was unable to see Santana-Ramirez's hands and he believed Santana-Ramirez to be loading a possible weapon," Bauer said.

According to the deputy's body-worn camera, the deputy told him to show his hands, but he refused. Then, Bauer said, Gann said "gun" and fired his duty-issued gun in Santana-Ramirez's direction.

Deputies and State Patrol troopers tried to save Santana-Ramirez, but he died at the scene.

After the shooting, Seward County Sheriff Michael Vance said when the two deputies had approachedthe driver, one saw a weapon in the suspect's hand and fired.

No other law enforcement agency has confirmed the presence of a weapon.

Last week, Vance said an internal investigation by his office didn't find that Gann had committed any violations or had not followed procedure that day.

The grand jury, which reviewed Santana-Ramirez's death for criminal wrongdoing over two days last week, reached a different conclusion, returning a true bill.

Their findings will not be released prior to Gann's trial because Lancaster County Attorney Pat Condon requested a protective order at Monday's hearing to keep the records sealed.

Gann hasn't yet been set for trial but was given a new court date in June.

Review of police shootings in Lincoln since 2013

1. Douglas DaMoude, May 30, 2014

Ex-Seward County deputy pleads not guilty to manslaughter (3)

2. Tyson Hubbard, March 5, 2015

Ex-Seward County deputy pleads not guilty to manslaughter (4)

3. Tareik Artis, Sept. 22, 2015

Ex-Seward County deputy pleads not guilty to manslaughter (5)

4. Zachary Grigsby, Nov. 29, 2015

Ex-Seward County deputy pleads not guilty to manslaughter (6)

5. Germichael Kennedy, June 26, 2016

Ex-Seward County deputy pleads not guilty to manslaughter (7)

6. Thomas Sailors, Jan. 5, 2018

Ex-Seward County deputy pleads not guilty to manslaughter (8)

7. Christopher Brennauer, Dec. 29, 2018

Ex-Seward County deputy pleads not guilty to manslaughter (9)

8. Joseph Francis Cimino, Oct. 8, 2019

Ex-Seward County deputy pleads not guilty to manslaughter (10)

9. Hailey Stainbrook and Christian Alexander, Feb. 20, 2021

Ex-Seward County deputy pleads not guilty to manslaughter (11)

10. German Pedraza, Nov. 24, 2021

Ex-Seward County deputy pleads not guilty to manslaughter (12)

11. Chace Abney, May 1, 2023

Ex-Seward County deputy pleads not guilty to manslaughter (13)

12. Stephen Kafka, Oct. 17,2023

Ex-Seward County deputy pleads not guilty to manslaughter (14)

13. Garrett Hanika Nov. 21, 2023

Ex-Seward County deputy pleads not guilty to manslaughter (15)

14. Braulio Blazio Dec. 17, 2023

Ex-Seward County deputy pleads not guilty to manslaughter (16)

15. Michael Glaser, April 2, 2024

Ex-Seward County deputy pleads not guilty to manslaughter (17)

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Ex-Seward County deputy pleads not guilty to manslaughter (2024)

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