Nebraska Revised Statute 29-402

Chapter 29


Arrest by person not an officer.

Any person not an officer may, without warrant, arrest any person, if a petit larceny or a felony has been committed, and there is reasonable ground to believe the person arrested guilty of such offense, and may detain him until a legal warrant can be obtained.


  • G.S.1873, c. 58, § 284, p. 789;
  • R.S.1913, § 8938;
  • C.S.1922, § 9962;
  • C.S.1929, § 29-402;
  • R.S.1943, § 29-402.


  • Evidence seized pursuant to an unlawful citizens arrest may still be admissible in absence of a showing of state action. State v. Houlton, 227 Neb. 215, 416 N.W.2d 588 (1987).

  • Jury award of five thousand dollars damages sustained against a private citizen who procured the unlawful arrest and detention of plaintiff. Huskinson v. Vanderheiden, 197 Neb. 739, 251 N.W.2d 144 (1977).

  • A police officer may arrest without a warrant when it appears that a felony has been committed and there are reasonable grounds to believe that the person arrested is guilty of the offense. State v. O'Kelly, 175 Neb. 798, 124 N.W.2d 211 (1963).

  • This section shows intent that provisions of this article apply to felonies and misdemeanors alike. Morrow v. State, 140 Neb. 592, 300 N.W. 843 (1941).

  • Arrest by private person, with cause to believe party arrested had committed a felony, was legal. Simmerman v. State, 16 Neb. 615, 21 N.W. 387 (1884).

  • Crime of which person arrested is suspected must have been committed. Kyner v. Laubner, 3 Neb. Unof. 370, 91 N.W. 491 (1902).

  • Search incident to arrest by Treasury Department agents was proper when agents saw revolver protruding from rear pocket of defendant who was trying to avoid them. United States v. Carter, 523 F.2d 476 (8th Cir. 1975).

  • Cited in determining that postal inspectors had probable cause to arrest defendant for carrying concealed weapon, a state felony. United States v. Unverzagt, 424 F.2d 396 (8th Cir. 1970).