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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (March 6, 1998)
_spobts_ _ili_ FRIDAY
Misty in the air Hup, two, three, four March 6,1998
Nebraska junior gymnast Misty Oxford is look- The UNL Symphonic Band will pay tribute this
ing to go down as one of the top gymnasts in weekend to John Philip Sousa, the composer and IS It SPRING YET?
Comhusker history. PAGE 7 conductor who taught millions to march. PAGE 9 Chance of snow, high 32. Windy tonight, low 29.
VOL. 97 COVERING THE UNIVERSITY OF NEBRASKA-LINCOLN SINCE 1901 NO. 117
Study shows accuracy
of meters has improved
By Josh Funk
Compared to last year, more dri
vers using parking meters on R Street
are getting the time they pay for.
A second annual Daily Nebraskan
investigation into the accuracy of some
city parking meters has determined the
meters, commonly used by students,
have improved since April 1997.
"If people don't get an hour for
their quarter, it's not fair, and it is con
fusing,” said Larry Brage. a city traffic
In the investigation, all 102 park
ing meters along R Street between 12th
and 16th streets were plugged with
quarters. The registered and elapsed
times were recorded to check their
Fifty-nine percent of the meters
registered exactly 60 minutes when a
quarter was deposited, while 22 per
cent of the meters registered more than
Nineteen percent of the meters reg
istered less than 60 minutes. On aver
age. these meters registered 1.07 min
utes less than an hour.
This compares favorably with last
year's investigation of the same
meters, which showed that only 39 per
cent of the meters registered time
accurately and 30 percent registered
more than 60 minutes.
Last year, 31 percent of the meters
were shortchanging students by an
average of two minutes as time
This year, the meters also
improved in the amount of time pur
chased with 25 cents.
Only 14 percent of the meters
expired in exactly 60 minutes, while
41 percent of them took more than 60
minutes from start to finish. Forty-five
percent expired early, shortchanging
On average, the meters expired
less than 15 seconds under an hour.
Last year, the meters expired an aver
age of 1.5 minutes under an hour.
Obviously, these numbers only
apply to those meters that actually
worked or were present.
R Street has 19 broken meters -
almost one in five - compared to last
Please see METERS on 3
I la OHIl ■■ la Now, more meters than last
■ wM year register the correct time
I V ■ a W m ■ when a quarter is deposited.
^ Fewer meters than last year
keep accurate time as they
wind down, but only by about
15 seconds on average.
Average time lost
1.5 min._15 sec.
II Keeps time correctly
1997 1998 I I Registers time correctly
Victim s friend perseveres
By Josh Funk
Since the summer of 1995, the
legal system has been slowly working
toward a conviction for the murder of
UNL student Martina McMenamin.
But the prospect of a trial may be
postponed indefinitely because the
Lincoln Regional Center has con
cluded that Gregory Gabel, the man
accused of her murder, is unfit to
Although the court has the final
say in determining Gabel’s compe
tency, the Regional Center’s findings
usually are upheld. The court has fol
lowed the center’s recommendations
all 18 times it was consulted last year.
Regardless of the court's find
ings, the competency hearing will
require an additional two to three
months to proceed while another doc
tor evaluates Gabel’s state of mind.
In the meantime, McMenamin’s
friends and family must continue the
waiting game that began more than a
year and a half ago when Gabel was
arrested for the crime.
“There’s a void that can’t be filled
without a trial,” said McMenamin’s
former roommate and best friend,
Sarah Bogmch. “There's no closure.”
Every time the case is in the news
or a lawyer calls her with questions,
Bogmch said, she must remember the
most difficult day of her life - the day
she came home from work and found
McMenamin lying in a pool of blood
in their south Lincoln apartment.
Bognich said the prospect of the
murder trial has changed her life.
When it looked as if Gabel would
soon face a jury of his peers, Bognich
dropped out of the University of
Nebraska-Lincoln so she would be
ready to testify.
But that trial has not yet come.
Bognich, 21, took a full-time job
at a real estate agency. She said she
was unsure of how to continue with
her life until after the trial.
“I never thought it would take this
long,” Bognich said. “It seems like
the criminal has more rights than the
And it may be some time before
Bognich is needed for testimony.
Before the case moves forward in
the legal system, the Regional
Center's evaluation will be taken into
consideration, and Lancaster County
Attorney Gary Lacey said he would
ask for a second opinion.
“After we get all the Regional
Center documents, there will be a
competency hearing where we will
ask the court for another evaluation,”
Once the court has both evalua
tions, the judge will determine if
Gabel is competent enough to stand
“This is just a pretrial motion that
must be cleared up,” Lacey said.
It seems like the
criminal has more
rights than the victim.”
friend of McMenamin
Meanwhile, Bognich has learned
to cope with losing such a close
“It affects me every day - the
anger and sadness are still there, but
I've learned to deal with it,” Bognich
They had been friends for six
years, attending different high
schools in Omaha before living
together in Smith Hall and then
McMenamin was an only child,
and Bognich’s family had moved to
Texas when she was a senior in high
After McMenamin was gone,
Bognich had to learn to face the
world without her closest friend.
“The hardest thing was going out
again,” Bognich said, “because
everything reminded me of her.”
And now Bognich realizes every
thing that is happening with the case
is out of her hands.
“I wish I could do more than
CHAI LING, a two-time Nobel Peace Prize nominee and a leader in the
Tiananmen Square Protest in China, spoke in the Nebraska Union on
enjoys new freedoms
By Lindsay Young
One of Chai Ling’s dreams was
to finish her education in the United
But she never dreamed she
would arrive the way she did.
Ling, the commander in chief of
the 1989 Tiananmen Square student
protest for freedom and democracy
in China, is still on China’s most
wanted list after escaping the
protest’s last-hour massacre by the
Ling spent 10 months running
from Chinese authorities and eventu
ally found a home in Boston. During
her escape, she survived 105 hours in
a crate with rats and with only two
slices of bread and a bottle of water.
Ling brought her message to
about 300 people at the University of
Nebraska-Lincoln on Thursday night
where she kicked off Women’s Week
in the Nebraska Union.
Before the speech, Ling chatted
during dinner in the Selleck
Residence Hall Continental Dining
Room with students in UNL's
Multicultural Affairs programs.
Sitting at a table with
Multicultural Affairs and Women's
Center representatives. Ling dis
I was tom and
couldn’t really believe
that (the massacre)
Tiananmen Sqaure survivor
cussed everything from life at
Harvard University to her experi
ences with the incident at
Women's Center organizers
hoped the message Ling brought
showed the university that one per
son could make a change. The theme
of Women’s Week is “The Power of
One, Women Making Change.”
“She is an individual but she was
able to make a change in her coun
try,” said Soledad Quinonez, the pro
Tolandra Coleman, Women's
Center resources coordinator, said
Ling’s presentation was something
most people would not otherwise
have the opportunity to hear and
Please see LING on 6
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