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Ex-youth treatment center staffer pleads in sex abuse case

Ex-youth treatment center staffer pleads in sex abuse case

KEARNEY, Neb. (AP) _ A former mental health practitioner at the state youth treatment center in Kearney has pleaded no contest to second-degree sexual abuse involving a teen at the facility.

The Kearney Hub reports that 29-year-old Samantha Halstead entered the plea Wednesday in Buffalo County District Court. A no
contest plea isn’t an admission of guilt, but is treated as such for sentencing. She faces up to three years in prison when she’s sentenced in August.

Court records show Halstead was investigated for sexual contact with an 18-year-old male being treated at the Youth Rehabilitation and Treatment Center. Other details outlining the incident have been sealed by a judge.

State law bars prison or detention center employees from having sex with anyone in custody.

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