Nebraska Revised Statute 28-901
Obstructing government operations; penalty.
(1) A person commits the offense of obstructing government operations if he intentionally obstructs, impairs, or perverts the administration of law or other governmental functions by force, violence, physical interference or obstacle, breach of official duty, or any other unlawful act, except that this section does not apply to flight by a person charged with crime, refusal to submit to arrest, failure to perform a legal duty other than an official duty, or any other means of avoiding compliance with law without affirmative interference with governmental functions.
(2) Obstructing government operations is a Class I misdemeanor.
- Laws 1977, LB 38, § 186.
A police chief's failure to forward, in accordance with section 29-424, to the county attorney a citation charging a city employee with a crime in order to prevent the city employee's employment from being terminated was obstructing government operations as set forth in subsection (1) of this section. The police chief obstructed or impaired a governmental function by failing to forward the citation to the county attorney, as required by section 29-424, because the action of failing to forward the citation impaired the county attorney's performance of its prosecutorial functions. The police chief did not have discretion to remove the citation of the city employee from the packet of citations to be sent to the county attorney such to conclude that he did not breach section 29-424. State v. Wilkinson, 293 Neb. 876, 881 N.W.2d 850 (2016).
A defendant may not be convicted of obstructing government operations by a physical act unless the public servant was engaged in a specific authorized act at the time of the physical interference. State v. Stolen, 276 Neb. 548, 755 N.W.2d 596 (2008).
The physical act component of this section consists of disjunctive, or independent, elements; force or violence is not required in all circumstances involving obstruction of government operations by physical act, partially overruling State v. Fahlk, 246 Neb. 834, 524 N.W.2d 39 (1994). State v. Stolen, 276 Neb. 548, 755 N.W.2d 596 (2008).
This section proscribes three separate means of committing obstruction of government operations; the physical act component must consist of some physical interference, force, violence, or obstacle. State v. Stolen, 276 Neb. 548, 755 N.W.2d 596 (2008).
Failure to volunteer information is not a physical act that violates this section. Nor are mere words, even those words deliberately intended to frustrate law enforcement, physical acts. State v. Fahlk, 246 Neb. 834, 524 N.W.2d 39 (1994).
The offense must consist of physical interference or some unlawful act. State v. Douglas, 217 Neb. 199, 349 N.W.2d 870 (1984).
The defendant's cleaning of a campsite and removal of alcohol containers were physical acts contemplated by the plain language of this section. State v. Stolen, 16 Neb. App. 121, 741 N.W.2d 168 (2007).