Liking And Hating The Police In Dickinson, North Dakota

Sometimes I like, and sometimes I hate, the Police in Dickinson, North Dakota.  I don’t want to be completely ungrateful, sometimes the Police in Dickinson are decent and helpful.

On average, I have some type of interaction with the Police in Dickinson, about once per month.  In the five years that I have lived in Dickinson, I have never once had any trouble whatsoever or negative interaction with the Stark County Sheriff Deputies.

The only times that I have had to deal with the Stark County Sheriff Deputies, is when I have intentionally contacted them.  In these instances, the Sheriff Deputies have been very helpful and cooperative.  All the other times that I have been driving, working, and living in Dickinson, the Stark County Sheriff Deputies have seemed to completely ignore me, and leave me alone.

The complete opposite happens with the City of Dickinson Police.  For the five years that I have lived in Dickinson, whenever I go anywhere, the Police watch me and follow me like I am a criminal involved in illegal activity.  I have been sick and tired of this for the past four years.

There is very little to do in Dickinson, and very few place to go.  One of the few things that you could do, would be to go out in the evening after work and have drinks with dinner at a restaurant or sports bar, but you can’t even do that because the Police in Dickinson are so eager and aggressive in stopping people for DUI.

I have totally given up on going to any bar in Dickinson, or any restaurant and having an alcohol drink, because the Police are determined that you are going to get a DUI.  I feel like I can’t even drive anywhere in Dickinson without the Police wanting to follow me, stop me, and try to arrest me for something.

For instance, about six months ago I was sitting in a restaurant on Villard Street in Dickinson, and my neighbor who is in his 40s, was sitting with his wife and another couple at the table across from me.  These two couples do not drink alcohol, use drugs, or act wild, they go to Church a couple of times each week, and they perform Church charity and volunteer work, which takes up much of their free time.  They are always very sober people, I see them and I talk to them every other day.

My neighbor and his wife exited the restaurant parking lot onto Villard Street in their fairly nice truck, about two minutes before I did.  When I pulled out onto Villard, I saw that my neighbor and his wife had been stopped by the Dickinson Police about four blocks away.

I stopped and asked my neighbor what was going on, and he said, “I have a headlight out on my truck, and the Police pulled me over for that, but they want to go through the whole have you been drinking routine, and run my driver’s license, check my insurance and registration,  I’ll be O.K.”

I hate driving anywhere in Dickinson, because it is so predictable, that the Police are going to be right on you, follow you, and try to stop you for something, to try to get you for a DUI, or some other criminal charge.  I got stopped by the Police in Dickinson on Villard Street last night, because I had a headlight out on my truck.  This was just a reason to pull me over, to try to discover something else to charge me with.

I have thought about this, and I began to believe that each of the Dickinson Police officers want to make an arrest so bad, in order to keep their job, advance in their job, or be able to transfer to a different police department elsewhere.  Unlike the Stark County Sheriff Deputies, who respond to calls or crimes that they witness, but otherwise leave people alone, the Dickinson Police are almost like they are stalking or hunting people just hoping to get them for something.

I am not going to re-write and re-tell the story from one of my previous blog posts, where the Drug Task Force in Dickinson had some undercover Police officers approach me in a bar and ask me again and again where they could buy drugs, so that they could arrest me for being a drug dealer.

Now having explained that I am tired of the Dickinson Police always acting like they want to get me for something when I am driving anywhere in Dickinson, I should probably also explain that I rely on and count on the Dickinson Police to show up when I call them.

Just off the top of my head, I can recall three different instances where a mentally disturbed criminal person went bezerk downtown in Dickinson and began attacking people, and I had to call 911.  As an aside, these three people weren’t from Dickinson, they were recently arrived people, who immediately got into trouble repeatedly, and eventually had to either leave town or stay in jail.

One time I witnessed someone committing a certain type of theft in Dickinson, not petty theft, I called 911, described the situation, got in my vehicle, followed the person until the Dickinson Police could catch up, and they caught the person with the stolen property in his vehicle, and he confessed to stealing it.

I have had to call the Police about three or four times to where I live in Dickinson, most recently last week.  A person that I did not recognize as a resident of my building, was passed out on the stairs at 3:00 a.m., not in a peaceful slumber, but as if he was too drugged or intoxicated to be able to get up or move.

When I have telephoned the Police in Dickinson, they usually arrive fairly quickly and handle the situation adequately, so I need to give the Police in Dickinson credit and show some appreciation.

I am facing a dilemma now, I have counted on the Dickinson Police to show up when I telephone them after witnessing a crime that has been committed or a crime that is still in progress, however I am sick of the Dickinson Police following me so that they can pull me over and try to arrest me for something.

I am starting to feel like Black people who live in inner cities, don’t trust the Police, don’t talk to the Police, don’t have anything to do with the Police, even if you see a crime being committed.

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