Oppression under color of office; penalty.
(1) Any public servant or peace officer who, by color of or in the execution of his office, shall designedly, willfully, or corruptly injure, deceive, harm, or oppress any person, or shall attempt to injure, deceive, harm, or oppress any person, commits oppression under color of office, and shall be answerable to the party so injured, deceived, or harmed or oppressed in treble damages.
(2) Oppression under color of office is a Class II misdemeanor.
Source:Laws 1977, LB 38, § 211.
This section is penal in nature and makes no provision for plaintiff to elect between actual and treble damages. An action pursuant to this section is one "upon a statute for a penalty" and is subject to the 1-year statute of limitations of section 25-208. LaBenz Trucking v. Snyder, 246 Neb. 468, 519 N.W.2d 259 (1994).
Because this section is a criminal statute, a prosecution and conviction of public servants for the crime of oppression under color of office is necessary before any damages or penalties will be assessed. Cole v. Wilson, 11 Neb. App. 837, 661 N.W.2d 706 (2003).
This section is purely criminal in nature and does not provide for an independent civil remedy. Cole v. Wilson, 11 Neb. App. 837, 661 N.W.2d 706 (2003).
Treble damages under this section would not be payable to the individual who was oppressed. Cole v. Wilson, 11 Neb. App. 837, 661 N.W.2d 706 (2003).