Statutes: Appeal and Error. Statutory
interpretation presents a question of law, for which an
appellate court has an obligation to reach an independent
conclusion irrespective of the determination made by the
Criminal Law: Evidence: Appeal and Error. In
reviewing a sufficiency of the evidence claim, whether the
evidence is direct, circumstantial, or a combination thereof,
the standard is the same: An appellate court does not resolve
conflicts in the evidence, pass on the credibility of
witnesses, or reweigh the evidence; such matters are for the
finder of fact. The relevant question for an appellate court
is whether, after viewing the evidence in the light most
favorable to the prosecution, any rational trier of fact
could have found the essential elements of the crime beyond a
Sentences: Appeal and Error. An appellate
court will not disturb a sentence imposed within the
statutory limits absent an abuse of discretion by the trial
Judgments: Words and Phrases. An abuse of
discretion occurs when a trial court's decision is based
upon reasons that are untenable or unreasonable or if its
action is clearly against justice or conscience, reason, and
Statutes: Appeal and Error. Statutory
language is to be given its plain and ordinary meaning, and
an appellate court will not resort to interpretation to
ascertain the meaning of statutory words which are plain,
direct, and unambiguous.
Statutes. It is not within the province of a
court to read a meaning into a statute that is not warranted
by the language.
Neb.App. 257] 7. Criminal Law:
Statutes. When dealing with penal statutes, it is a
fundamental principle of statutory construction that they be
strictly construed. In doing so, a court cannot supply
language which is absent from the statutory definition for a
Criminal Law: Statutes: Legislature. A
criminal statute includes only those elements which the
Legislature explicitly included in its text.
Criminal Law: Minors: Proof. Neb. Rev. Stat.
§ 28-707 (Cum. Supp. 2014) only requires proof of the
status of the victim as a minor child; the statute does not
require proof of the victim's actual identity or birth
Trial: Presumptions. Under Neb. Rev. Stat.
§ 28-707(1) (Cum. Supp. 2014), triers of fact may apply
to the subject before them that general knowledge which any
person must be presumed to have.
Sentences: Appeal and Error. Where a
sentence imposed within the statutory limits is alleged on
appeal to be excessive, the appellate court must determine
whether the sentencing court abused its discretion in
considering and applying the relevant factors as well as any
applicable legal principles in determining the sentence to be
Sentences. When imposing a sentence, the
sentencing judge should consider the defendant's (1) age,
(2) mentality, (3) education and experience, (4) social and
cultural background, (5) past criminal record or record of
law-abiding conduct, and (6) motivation for the offense, as
well as (7) the nature of the offense and (8) the violence
involved in the commission of the offense.
___. The appropriateness of a sentence is necessarily a
subjective judgment and includes the sentencing judge's
observation of the defendant's demeanor and attitude and
all the facts and circumstances surrounding the
from the District Court for Lancaster County, Kevin R.
McManaman, Judge, on appeal thereto from the County Court for
Lancaster County, Matthew L. Acton, Judge. Judgment of
District Court affirmed.
D. Nigro, Lancaster County Public Defender, and Matthew
Meyerle for appellant.
Douglas J. Peterson, Attorney General, and Sarah E. Marfisi
Neb.App. 258] Moore, Chief Judge, and Bishop and Arterburn,
R. Thomas was convicted of negligent child abuse, a Class I
misdemeanor, and disturbing the peace, a Class III
misdemeanor, after a bench trial in the county court for
Lancaster County. He appealed to the district court for
Lancaster County, which affirmed the judgment of the county
court. On appeal to this court, Thomas asserts the child
abuse statute requires proof of the identity and birth date
of the victim. He ...