Police Arrest Suspect in Assault, Robbery of Woman at Church

Kevin Cole, Omaha World-Herald, August 19, 2015

Police on Wednesday arrested a 22-year-old Omaha man identified as a suspect in the assault and robbery of an elderly woman Sunday in the back of St. Cecilia Cathedral.

An arrest warrant had been issued Wednesday for Wayman B. Clark after members of the Omaha Police Department’s gang unit thought they recognized Clark as one of two assailants shown in a surveillance video. Crime Stoppers also received several tips indicating Clark may have been one of the men, said Officer Michael Pecha, a police spokesman. Clark was taken into custody just before 11:30 a.m., Pecha said.

Wayman Clark

Wayman Clark

The Rev. James Netusil was in the sacristy preparing for 11:30 a.m. Mass when the assault occurred, he said Tuesday. An usher rushed in and asked him for a towel to clean blood from the woman’s face.

The woman, a 76-year-old resident of Johnston, Iowa, can be seen in the video reading a copy of the parish newsletter at the welcome table at 11:06 a.m. in the church at 701 N. 40th St. The assault takes less than 15 seconds.

One of two young men approached the 5-foot-6, 150-pound woman from behind and grabbed her purse before running out the door. The second attacker can be seen hitting the woman squarely on the side of her face, knocking her down. The woman hit her head on the side of the table as she fell.


The woman was taken to Creighton University Medical Center with a large bump and scrapes on her forehead, according to an Omaha Police Department report. She was treated in the emergency room and released, a hospital spokeswoman said.


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