A man and a woman now face first-degree murder charges in the death of a 22-year-old Imperial woman, according to documents filed Monday in Chase County Court.
Kevin Scott German, 24, and Keonna Nilsa Carter, 22, are accused of killing Annika B.J. Swanson after holding her and another woman for three days in a home near Enders, southeast of Imperial.
Each also faces two sets of five additional charges — using a deadly weapon to commit a felony, kidnapping, first-degree false imprisonment, terroristic threats and third-degree assault.
All those counts, originally filed Friday, are felonies except for the assault charges.
Authorities found Swanson’s body Sunday at the bottom of an 8-foot-deep irrigation drainage pipe in a rural area near Imperial, Chase County Deputy Sheriff Duncan Einspahr said in an arrest affidavit.
He said investigation indicated Swanson was forced to slide down the pipe, which was 2 feet in diameter, sometime Nov. 14. Autopsy results remained pending.
Swanson had last been seen Nov. 10 at a Wauneta business where she worked, the affidavit added. Swanson’s father reported her missing Thursday.
Chase County Attorney Arlen Wine filed the murder charges Monday, a day after German, of Colorado Springs, Colorado, and Carter, of Taylorsville, Utah, were arrested on the other charges in Fort Collins, Colorado.
Both remained Tuesday in the Larimer County Jail in Fort Collins on cash bail of 10% of $1 million. Chase County prosecutors will have to seek their extradition to Nebraska.
Meanwhile, Russell T. Mann, 43, of rural Enders was being held Tuesday in the Chase County Jail in Imperial on two counts of being an accessory to a felony. Mann’s cash bail has been set at 10% of $250,000.
Mann allowed his house to be used to hold the two women from Nov. 12 to 14, Einspahr said in the arrest affidavit.
The chain of events leading to Swanson’s death apparently stemmed from a dispute over a sexual relationship that did not involve Swanson, Einspahr said.
County Judge Edward Steenburg Monday appointed the Nebraska Attorney General’s Office to assist Chase County prosecutors. Its staffers will act as special deputy Chase County attorneys.
Steenburg also appointed the Nebraska Commission on Public Advocacy to represent German and North Platte lawyers Robert Lindemeier and Kent Florom to represent Carter. Imperial lawyer Joel Burke will represent Mann.