Nebraska state troopers responded to hundreds of incidents over the Nov. 30-Dec 2 weekend when a winter storm rolled through Nebraska, making travel hazardous from Friday evening through Sunday.

Troopers responded to 49 crashes, helped 224 motorists and helped other law enforcement agencies deal with 47 incidents during the weekend, Nebraska State Patrol spokesman Cody Thomas said.

Troopers also arrested seven people for driving under the influence of alcohol, often when a trooper checked out a stranded vehicle or vehicle that crashed. Troopers also made multiple drug arrests after pulling vehicles over, Thomas said.

 

Drug busts Friday

Two of the drug busts happened Friday before the storm arrived.

At 1:15 a.m. Friday, a trooper stopped a vehicle for speeding on Old Highway 71 north of Kimball. The driver had a suspended license. A search of the vehicle turned up 3 grams of meth, drug paraphernalia, and a homemade metal sword.

The driver, Erik Nuss, 39, of Bayard, was charged with driving under suspension, possession of meth and drug paraphernalia, and possession of a deadly weapon while committing a felony. Nuss was taken to the Kimball County Jail.

At approximately 1:20 p.m. Friday, another trooper stopped an eastbound semi-truck for driving on the I-80 shoulder near Gibbon. During the stop, the trooper smelled the odor of marijuana, searched the vehicle and found a small amount of marijuana, drug paraphernalia, and also 31 fraudulent credit cards, including one that had been used earlier that day at a gas station in Ogallala.

The occupants, Garik Hunanyan, 28, and Yana Kravets, 22, of California, were charged with possession of fraudulent financial transaction devices, possession of drug paraphernalia, and possession of less than an ounce of marijuana. They were taken to the Buffalo County jail, Thomas said.