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Nebraska's lieutenant governor resigns amid family dispute

Nebraska Lt. Gov. Lavon Heidemann's sister obtained an order of protection, accusing him of pushing her out of their mother's bedroom.

By Frances Burns

LINCOLN, Neb., Sept. 9 (UPI) -- Lavon Heidemann became the second Nebraska lieutenant governor to quit in less than two years, also dropping off the Republican ticket in November.

His decision comes in the wake of a family dispute that led to an accusation by his sister that he pushed her out of their mother's bedroom in August. A judge granted Lois Bohling an order of protection Monday.

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Heidemann, who was named lieutenant governor in 2013 after the resignation of Rick Sheehy, was running for a full term with Pete Ricketts, the Republican gubernatorial nominee.

The siblings are reportedly disputing the disposition of property and the care of their mother. Heidemann did not answer questions at a tearful news conference Tuesday, although he said he disputes his sister's account of his behavior.

Sheehy quit in February 2013. While Gov. Dave Heineman said little about the reasons for Sheehy's decision, there were reports he had been using a government-issued cellphone to call women late at night.

Heineman is term-limited from running again. Ricketts, the former chief operating officer of Ameritrade, ran unsuccessfully for the U.S. Senate in 2006.

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Ricketts said he was saddened by the news of Heidemann's resignation.

"My prayers continue to be with the Heidemann family at this very difficult time," he said. "Lavon has served the State of Nebraska with distinction and integrity for the last decade and he has my gratitude and continued prayers."

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