The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current, November 30, 1995, Image 1
THURSDAY WEATHER: Today - Partly cloudy and warmer. Southwest wind 10 to 20 mph. Tonight - Partly cloudy. Low around 30. _November 30, 1995 Irony marks testimony in Schlondorf trial By Jeff Zeleny Senior Reporter In April 1993, University Police Officer Robert Soflin helped save a suicidal student’s life. Seventeen months later, that same student was charged with trying to kill him. In the second day of Gerald Schlondorfs attempted second-de gree murder trial, Soflin recounted Wednesday the graphic image of find ing Schlondorf in a pool of blood on his bed in Neihardt Residence Hall. “I recall thinking that if I didn’t stop that blood loss, this individual was going to die right in front of me,” Soflin said. The seven-year veteran of the Uni versity Police Department applied pressure to the wounds on Schlondorfs wrist. Schlondorf sur vived and was hospitalized for about two weeks after the suicide attempt. On Sept. 12, 1994, Soflin was wounded in a shooting at 16th and R streets. Schlondorf is charged with nine felonies in connection with the shooting and a chase through Lincoln’s rush-hour traffic. Schlondorf, 32, has pleaded inno cent and not responsible by reason of insanity. His trial is expected to con elude next week. Soflin was the only witness to tes tify Wednesday. The trial was de layed throughout the day by hearings without the jury present. Chief Deputy Lancaster County Attorney John Colborn fded a motion for mistrial during the morning ses sion. Colborn said the 12-member jury was potentially tainted by a con versation overheard during a recess in the trial. Colborn received two reports that members of Schlondorf s family, who are sequestered witnesses, were dis cussing the trial. A member of the media informed Colbom that Schlondorfs father and brother commented on the testimony in the presence of jurors. The judge’s court reporter told Colborn he also overheard the Schlondorfs talking about the trial in the courtroom halls, even though they were ordered Tuesday not to discuss the case. “1 don’t know what else the jurors have heard,” Colbom said. For about one hour, District Judge Bernard McGinn asked individual jurors if they had been influenced by statements allegedly made outside of the courtroom. None of the jurors said they had heard the conversation. Schlondorf s father and brother were reprimanded for discussing the case. His father, Robert Schlondorf, made an emotional statement to the court. “It is a shame that none of our family can be in the courtroom, but news reporters can write and draw pictures of it,” he said. “My son is on trial here, but yet we cannot be in the courtroom. Is that criminal justice?” Colborn withdrew his mistrial motion after the judge agreed to re strict the Schlondorf family and other potential witnesses from the third See SCHLONDORF on 6 ^___- ^ JayCalderon/DN James Griesen, vice chancellor for student affairs, and ASUN Senator Malcolm Kass have pizza after Wednesday night’s student senate meeting. ASUN has few guests at Unity Dinner By Kasey Kerber Staft Reporter A SUN held a Unity Dinner Wednesday night to give international and minority student groups a chance to share their cul tures and ideas with the student senate. But only four non-ASUN members showed up at the potluck dinner. They still had dinner, tasting a few cul tural dishes prepared by senators such as Indian rice and egg rolls... and Valentjno’s pizza. Association of Students of the University of Nebraska President Shawntell Hurtgen had said the dinner would give a voice to organizations that are sometimes not heard in student government. The dinner was to follow their meeting at the Culture Center, which focused on cam pus safety. Guest speaker Ken Cauble, University. Police chief, discussed how police could work with the Residence Hall Association to improve campus safety. Five community service officers will be added to the university police, Cauble said. “Currently there is one community ser See ASUN on 3 Engineers develop routes for construction By Paula Lavigne Senior Reporter ~ Highway engineers have a plan to avoid game-day roadblocks when construction be gins on Interstate 180 next fall. The two-year, $14 million project will re place a mile of pavement on the northbound and southbound bridges of 1-180, downtown Lincoln’s north access to Interstate 80. Construction on the southbound lanes, which run east of Memorial Stadium, will begin in late November 1996 after the last home foot ball game, Ken Gottula said. Gottula, traffic engineer with the Nebraska State Department of Roads, said heavy game day traffic dictated the construction schedule. “That was our primary thought from the very onset — do it sometime other than the football season,” he said. About 37,000 cars use 1-180 on a football Saturday, Gottula said, almost 10,000 more than on an average day. To avoid a traffic crunch, he said, the southbound lanes should be finished by the start of the 1997 football season in early Sep tember. The contractors will suspend their work during the football season, he said, and begin work on the northbound lanes in December 1997. The project should be finished by Sep tember 1998. The bridges, which were built in the 1960s, were weakened by increased traffic and salting during icy months, he said, and are not up to 1995 standards. HWS Consulting Group, the engineering See TRAFFIC on 3 Students can voice opinions at first forum By Heidi White Staff Reporter Members of the UNL community finally will be able to voice their thoughts about im portant campus issues at a town meeting. The first UNL Community Conversations forum will be today from 12:30 p.m. to 2 p.m. in the north lounge of the Nebraska Union. The topic will be violence on campus. The forums, which will be held at least twice *. a semester, are open to all University of Ne braska-Lincoln students, faculty and staff. Those involved in campus organizations are especially encouraged to attend. Representatives from the Association of Students of the University of Nebraska, the Residence Hall Association, the Faculty Women’s Caucus and the Athletic Department will be among the panel participants for the first meeting, said ASUN President Shawntell Hurtgen. “This opens it up to everybody who has an opinion and really does bring out different perspectives on issues that have been contro versial,” Hurtgen said. Larry Doerr, a campus ministry representa tive who helped develop the forum, said five to eight people probably would make up the panel. A moderator will ask the panelists questions, and anyone may speak after that. Guidelines have been set to maintain order at the meeting. They include: • Keeping comments focused on the day’s topic. • Listening carefully before responding is as important as speaking clearly. • Openness and honesty are desired; no relevant idea is out of order. • Strong expressions of opinion are wel come; personal attacks are not. • Participants will speak for themselves only, rather than for any group. • Conversations are not debates. The pur pose is to widen the horizons of participants’ thinking and understanding, not to score points or to arrive at some final conclusions. Hurtgen said the meeting should create a real community feeling among participants as well as educate them on both sides of the issue. Because the meeting is a pilot project, Doerr said, it will still be somewhat flexible in its format. However, he said, the discussion guide lines will be followed. “It will not be a place where people will CQme to lecture on something so those who aferee will come to listen and those with oppos ing viewpoints are left out,” he said. Doerr said he hoped the forum would be successful and that people could address criti cal issues in an open, nonest setting without personal attacks. “If it works, I feel that it will serve two purposes,” he said—allowing people to talk in a civil fashion and broadening perspectives.