Officer - Homicide

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The state Court of Appeals Tuesday refused to overturn the motor vehicle homicide convictions of a former North Platte police officer in the deaths of two colleagues.

Defense attorney Robert Lindemeier had said Jesse Houpt should get a new trial because of several errors committed by his trial judge.

Prosecutors said Houpt was driving drunk and caused the April 2002 accident that killed fellow North Platte officers Ross Hilsman and Zachary Peters.

They said Houpt and the other off-duty officers had been driving and drinking in the foothills southeast of North Platte.

Lindemeier argued the machine used to test Houpt's blood for the presence of alcohol had not been properly maintained.

Houpt resigned after the accident.

He was sentenced to 90 days in jail, 120 days of electronic monitoring and 200 hours of community service.

He also was ordered to undergo counseling for alcohol abuse and placed on four years of probation.