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York County: 2 people, police dog killed in stolen K-9 vehicle crash are identified

Posted at 1:10 PM, Feb 10, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-10 14:25:10-05

YORK, Neb. (AP and KMTV) — Authorities in southeastern Nebraska say a bystander who was killed along with the suspect and a police dog in the fiery crash of a stolen sheriff's vehicle was a popular teacher and coach from Hampton.

The bystander was identified by the York County Sheriff's Office as 31-year-old Kyle Ediger, a nine-year employee of Hampton Public Schools who was a math teacher and boys basketball coach.

Authorities say the crash happened Tuesday night when 43-year old Joseph Stoltenberg stole a sheriff's vehicle with the police dog, named Nitro, still inside and led authorities on a pursuit in rural York County.

The Office of the Sheriff in York County said that the suspect gained control of the patrol car during a "high-risk vehicle stop" following an eight-minute pursuit. When the suspect exited his vehicle, the sheriff's office says he told officers that he wanted to die and kept his hands concealed, claiming to have a gun. The suspect, say authorities, "advanced towards the officer" and then stole the vehicle.

Authorities say Stoltenberg then sped toward a moving train and crashed into the back of Ediger's vehicle that was stopped for the train. The crash killed Ediger, Stoltenberg and the police canine.

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