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North Platte man charged with first-degree sex assaultTell North Platte what you think
Photo by Lincoln County Detention Center
John A. Runkle
Photo by Lincoln County Detention Center
Robert C. Bergen

A North Platte man was charged early Monday with the first-degree sexual assault of an adult woman.

Police Spokesman John Deal said at 6:22 a.m. Monday, an officer received the report of a sexual assault that allegedly occurred in the early morning hours at a home in the 2400 block of East Second. 

The officer met a 29-year-old woman, who was reportedly acquainted with John Runkle, 35, of North Platte.

Deal said the two were not in a dating-type relationship. The woman reportedly stayed at Runkle’s home on Sunday evening, into the early morning hours. She told police she fell asleep while the two of them were watching a movie, and alleged that she woke to John having sexual intercourse with her, to which she did not consent.

After she awoke, the woman left the home and reported what occurred to the police. 

Deal said officers contacted Runkle at the home, and he agreed to an interview and allowed police to look around. 

Deal said some marijuana was found there in plain view. And, after the interview, officers charged Runkle with first-degree sexual assault. 

Runkle is a registered sex offender, but his last registered address is not the home where he has lived for several months, Deal said. Consequently, he was also charged with failure to update his address on the sex offender registry, as well as possession of marijuana.

He was initially held without bond pending a court appearance.



Also on Monday, Robert Bergen, 32, of North Platte was arrested and charged with possession of methamphetamine.

The case began on March 9, when an officer received a tip that Robert Bergen was at the courthouse and had drugs in his pocket, Deal said. 

An officer found Bergen in a county courtroom, which was in session, according to the police report. Bergen was asked to meet with the officer outside the court room, which he did.

Deal said the officer explained the complaint and Bergen reached into his pocket and handed over a zip lock bag containing white residue. 

The bag was sent to the Nebraska Crime Lab for further testing, which recently confirmed the residue was meth.

Bergan was arrested Monday near Philip and Poplar and taken to the Lincoln County jail.

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The North Platte Bulletin - Published 4/25/2017
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