LINCOLN — Ed Poindexter, one of two men convicted in a booby trap bombing that killed an Omaha police officer in 1970, is recovering from triple-bypass heart surgery at a state prison.

Poindexter, 72, underwent surgery on Dec. 20 at a Lincoln hospital, a day after reporting that he was unable to breathe.

He and David Rice were sentenced to life in prison for the murder of Omaha Police Officer Larry Minard.

Poindexter and Rice, who later went by the name Mondo we Langa, maintained they were innocent. Advocates call them political prisoners, and claim they were framed using false testimony and faulty evidence because they were leaders of a Black Panther-like militant group. Rice died in March in prison.

Kietryn Zychal, a friend of Poindexter’s, visited him Wednesday at the Diagnostic and Evaluation Center in Lincoln, where he is being held in the infirmary.

Poindexter, she said, was grateful for his medical care, and hopeful that he could be transferred soon back to his cell at the State Penitentiary, and renew his efforts to prove his innocence.

Due to health care privacy laws, the Nebraska Department of Corrections has declined to comment on the surgery. Under the U.S. Constitution, prisons are required to provide adequate health care to inmates.

hammel@owh.com, 402-444-1000 x6612

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Reporter - Regional/state issues

Paul covers state government and affiliated issues. He specializes in tax and transportation issues, following the governor and the state prison system. Follow him on Twitter @PaulHammelOWH. Phone: 402-473-9584.

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