Death row inmate Patrick Schroeder dies at Tecumseh state prison

Aug. 29, 2022, 6 p.m. ·

Patrick Schroeder, front, is escorted into Johnson County District Court Room. (Photo by Brendan Sullivan, Omaha World-Herald)

A 45-year-old death row inmate, who is serving sentences for two separate murders, was found dead at the Tecumseh state prison Monday, according to the Nebraska Department of Corrections.

The cause of death for Patrick Schroeder remains unclear. As with all inmate deaths, a grand jury will investigate the death.

Schroeder had been sentenced to life in 2006 for a first degree murder and forgery. Schroder murdered 75-year-old Kenny Albers, a Pawnee City farmer who had once given him a job. An Otoe County jury sentenced Schroeder to life in prison.

In 2017, he killed his Tecumseh cellmate, which led a panel of judges to put him on death row. After the second murder, he advocated that he deserved the death penalty.

“When I knew that they were going to be charging me with the death penalty, I knew what my choices were," Schroeder told Nebraska Public Media. "I knew what I was going to do.”

He’s said he would not put up a fight – and that included when the Nebraska Supreme Court reaffirmed his death penalty sentence.

“Mr. Schroeder elected to basically just sit there and let the train hit him,” said Sarah Newell, the attorney who Schroeder allowed to speak on his behalf as she appeared before the Nebraska Supreme Court in 2019.

Schroeder was one of 12 men on death row in Nebraska. Upon his death, there remain 11.

Editor's note: This is a developing story. Check for updates. A previous version of this story incorrectly stated the number of death row inmates in Nebraska.