Omaha, NE -- The extended family of Nikko Jenkins is upset over a series of articles by the Omaha World Herald Thursday. The group of about 20 people not only went to the OWH building to get answers, but the Omaha Police Officers Association because they say they've had a role in promoting it and fueled hateful feedback.
The article was first published in the Sunday paper, and detailed the Jenkins and Levering family tree and problems with the law. It depicts a history of criminal activity, drug and alcohol abuse, and neglect.
Nikko Jenkins is accused of killing 4 people over a 10-day span shortly after being released from prison. He says Egyptian Gods told him to carry out the murders. He says he wants to plead guilty to all charges. Prosecutors say robbery was the motivation, and they’re seeking the death penalty.
The Jenkins and Levering family says they've seen the incredibly negative comments, felt the fear and judgment in person, and have lost opportunities because of it.
"I ask that the public please do not judge the innocent and young Leverings from this inaccurate article," Cornelius Levering explained.
"Please leave us alone and just don't discriminate us anymore because we didn't have anything to do with what happened. We're trying to succeed and we've all changed our lives,” said Cornelius’ mother, Ida Levering.
The newspaper articles detailed how, for generations, members of the levering family have been in trouble with the law, and have neglected to take care of their children.
Some family says it's kept them from getting a job, or negatively impacted their current work situation.
"Of course we know that some of it is public record, but some of it is propaganda also to hurt our family, and we're not going to go for it,” said James Jenkins, Nikko’s uncle. "(It’s) not going to just affect me it's going to affect my son coming up, my daughters."
The group says they met with the OWH Executive Editor and the V.P. of News and Content, Thursday. They say their protest is peaceful, not violent and the stories alienate one of the most poverty-stricken communities in the country.
The Omaha World Herald is standing by its reports calling them fair, and based on fact.
Executive Editor Mike Reilly tells KMTV Action 3 News, "I understand why some of the Leverings are upset. But it is the actions of their family members that have tainted the family name, not The World-Herald report.
"Reilly says reporters took special care to highlight some of the Leverings, who have no criminal records and are good citizens. One of those highlighted was Cornelius Levering.