HARTINGTON, Neb. — A Fordyce, Nebraska, man has accepted a plea deal — including dismissal of two attempted-murder charges — in the alleged July 2019 multiple stabbings of another man at a Fordyce residence.
Kevin Haug pleaded “no contest” to four charges during this week’s pre-trial conference in Cedar County District Court. He had faced eight charges.
Judge Bryan Meismer accepted the pleas and found him guilty on the four charges, but the judge isn’t bound to follow the plea deal in his sentencing.
Besides the alleged stabbings, the second attempted-murder charge arose from Haug’s alleged effort to run over a law enforcement officer with a vehicle during a high-speed pursuit.
Attempted murder, a Class II felony, carries a sentence of 1-50 years.
As part of the plea deal, the prosecution dismissed two other cases against Haug involving drug charges and violation of a protection order.
During Monday’s court proceedings, the state recommended the following sentences:
• Count I: Assault in the First Degree, a Class II felony, 12-18 years of incarceration;
• Count II: Operation of Motor Vehicle to Avoid Arrest, a Class IV felony; 1 year of incarceration to be served concurrently (at the same time as other sentences) and two years license revocation;
• Counts III and IV: Attempted Assault on an Officer Using a Motor Vehicle, a Class IV felony, each 2 years of incarceration to be served consecutively (one sentence after another);
The alleged incidents began at the home of Rhea Haug — Kevin’s estranged wife — and their children. Kevin allegedly broke into the house during the early morning hours and confronted Rhea along with Jimmy Olson, who was at the residence.
Kevin Haug allegedly stabbed Olson multiple times with a machete and corn knife. According to court documents, Olson suffered a cut on his forehead, a stab wound in his upper right abdomen that required surgery, a deep laceration to his left hand and cuts on his lower left abdomen.
Olson was taken to a Yankton hospital for treatment, according to court records.
Kevin Haug allegedly exited his wife’s residence, washed his hands and the weapons in a swimming pool and then fled the scene in a vehicle. Authorities reported they later retrieved the weapons from the pool.
Haug allegedly was driving a stolen U-Haul and headed for Yankton, where he turned around after encountering South Dakota law enforcement officers at the Discovery Bridge crossing the Missouri River.
Haug allegedly led Nebraska authorities on a high-speed chase in Cedar County, rammed a Cedar County deputy’s vehicle and attempted to run over a Cedar County deputy sheriff. Haug was apprehended after colliding with another vehicle at the Highway 81-84 intersection in Cedar County.
Besides the two counts of attempted murder, the original eight charges included one count of first-degree assault and one count of use of a deadly weapon to commit a felony, both Class 2 felonies; one count of possession of a deadly weapon to commit a felony, a Class 3 felony; one count of assault on an officer using a motor vehicle, a Class 3A felony; and one count of operation of a motor vehicle to avoid arrest and one count of criminal mischief, both Class 4 felonies.
The Class 3 felony carried a maximum penalty of 1-20 years in prison and $25,000 fine, and the Class 3A and Class 4 felonies each carried a maximum sentence of up to 5 years in prison and a $10,000 fine.
Haug had been serving a sentence on a Madison County, Nebraska, probation violation and remained jailed there while moving through Cedar County court proceedings.
Sentencing on the Cedar County charges has been set for July 27 in Hartington. Haug remains in the custody of the Cedar County sheriff’s office.
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