Tag Archives: crime in Dickinson North Dakota

Is This A Case Of I Dindu Nuffin In Dickinson, North Dakota

A 24 year old Dickinson resident, Chelsey Borden, has filed a complaint against Dickinson Police Officer Chad Hopponen alleging that the officer used excessive force in arresting her on January 18.

I will try to give a brief timeline of events as reported by the Dickinson Press newspaper in their January 23 article  https://www.thedickinsonpress.com/news/4879312-Woman-accuses-Dickinson-officer-of-using-excessive-force-department-to-investigate .

On January 18 at approximately 1 a.m. Chelsey Borden left “Army’s West” sports bar and went to the Holiday gas station and convenience store located approximately two city blocks to the east.

Chelsey waited inside the Holiday convenience store and talked to the cashier while waiting for a friend of hers to arrive.  When her friend arrived, Funmi Ujima, the two of them continued to talk together inside of the store.

Within a short time, another woman walked into the store, who was known to both Chelsey and the friend that Chelsey was talking to.  Chelsey said that she had had problems with this woman before, and that this woman began to argue, act aggressive, and then this woman physically attacked her.

 A physical fight ensued, and Dickinson Police Officer Chad Hopponen arrived while this physical fight was still in progress.

The above timeline is roughly what happened, the bare facts.  For the rest of the story, Chelsey Borden has her version, and Police Officer Chad Hopponen has his version.

Chelsey’s Version:

Chelsey said that the other woman pushed her, took a swing at her, and that she was only trying to defend herself when Police Officer Hopponen arrived.  Chelsey said that Officer Hopponen yelled at her, put his finger in her face, yelled at her to put her fucking hands behind her back, and yelled at her to fucking get down on the floor.

Chelsey’s quote from the Dickinson Press then said at this point, that Chelsey put her hands up, and said, Sir, please calm down, and let me explain what happened.  Then, “Without notice or warning he swiped at my face and aggressively forced me to the ground causing my injuries,” she said. “I was thrown into the back of Officer Hopponen’s police cruiser, and he never asked me what happened or listened to my pleas for him to loosen the cuffs, which left bruises on my wrists to this day.”

Some of Chelsey’s complaints are, the Police Officer used excessive force, she suffered a cut on her cheek, she suffered bruising because the handcuffs were used improperly, and the Police Officer didn’t use the training he was taught for de-escalation.

The Police/Officer Chad Hopponen’s version:

The Dickinson Police stated that they do not want to discuss this arrest prior to the completion of both the criminal case and their internal investigation of Police Officer Chad Hopponen, beyond a few initial statements.  “According to police, Borden was arrested shortly after 1:30 a.m. inside the store for what police say was disorderly and tumultuous behavior. Police say Borden resisted the officer’s attempts to gain compliance and take her into custody.”  “Capt. Joe Cianni, Dickinson Police Department, said that the altercation and subsequent arrest were captured on audio and video footage.”

The Dickinson Press newspaper article covering this incident was fairly well written, it was detailed, and thorough.  I wouldn’t say that it was leaning in either Chelsey Borden’s favor or Police Officer Chad Hopponen’s favor, but this article does not include Police Officer Chad Hopponen’s observations, assessments, or opinions, only Chelsey’s.

In a way, this Dickinson Press newspaper story is one-sided, because Police Officer Chad Hopponen wasn’t able to tell his side of the story.  Many months from now, probably not until the criminal case against Chelsey Borden is concluded, the video and audio, of the altercation and the arrest will be made public.

I am writing about this news story, because I am angry about it.  I want to point out what is not being told.  Someone called the Police that night, it was probably the Holiday convenience store clerk.  Everything was not going along fine, everything was not going O.K., there was an argument and then a physical fight between two people at 1:30 a.m. inside the store.

Whoever called the Dickinson Police Department, they didn’t just say that there was a fight inside the Holiday convenience store, the Police Dispatcher asks the caller to explain who is fighting, give a description, what are they wearing, are there any weapons, what is happening.  I believe that it is likely that the caller told the dispatcher who attacked who, and who was hitting who.

Something else that is not being told, is that there was probably alcohol involved.  It was 1:30 a.m. following a Friday night, Chelsey had just come from a bar, one or more of the parties involved had probably been drinking alcohol.  Stop and think about it, when was the last time that you saw a fist-fight between two women at the Family Dollar or Family Fare grocery store during the day?  This is not normal behavior.

My opinion is that when Officer Hopponen arrived at the Holiday convenience store, the Police Dispatcher had already given a description of the aggressor to the Police Officer, based on the information that was given by the caller.  Or, that based on what Officer Hopponen saw as he approached, he was able to determine who the aggressor appeared to be.

I believe that Officer Hopponen encountered two very angry, combative, aggressive women who were currently engaged in a fist-fight inside the store.  My opinion is, that one or both of the women were probably under the influence of alcohol, were not using normal judgement, and were not complying with Officer Hopponen’s instructions.

In Chelsey’s statements to the Dickinson Press reporter, she said that she was being yelled at by Officer Hopponen to put her fucking hands behind her back, and fucking get down on the floor, but instead of doing what he asked, she stood there with her hands up, saying let me explain.

When Police Officers arrive somewhere to possibly make an arrest, they do not know if the people that they are dealing with have any weapons on their person, such as a knife or a firearm.  They would like to have compliance in handcuffing the person, rather than resistance or refusal, because they do not know if the person is armed or what they will do next.  Failing to comply with the Police Officer’s request, means more to the Police Officer than just a difference of opinion, it poses a threat to the Police Officer.

Chelsey said that Officer Hopponen should have used his de-escalation training.  He wasn’t trying to de-escalate, he was trying to make an arrest, take someone into custody, and transport them to jail.  De-escalation, what does that mean in this case, not being arrested, not being taken to jail, and not having two misdemeanor charges on your record?

Prior to publishing this blog post article, I went to the North Dakota Court Repository internet site, and typed in “Chelsey Borden” for Stark County criminal cases.  There is no record of her arrest, which probably means that the prosecutor or the police have dropped the charges against her.

Once the internal Dickinson Police Department investigation of Officer Chad Hopponen has been completed, the Dickinson Police said that the audio and video of the altercation and the arrest will be released to the public upon request.  I am very interested to see and hear what happened.

What Is Happening To The Stolen Bicycles In Dickinson, North Dakota

Between 8 p.m. Sunday night and 4 a.m. Monday morning, someone cut the chain on my neighbor Matt’s bicycle in his front yard, and stole it.  This is the second bicycle that has been stolen from my neighbor Matt in this past year.

This most recent bicycle that was stolen from Matt was only worth about $100.  However the previous bicycle that was stolen from Matt was worth about $500 to $2,000 because it was a very good condition mountain bike that was a rare, collectible bicycle, that there are very few of in existence.

Six months ago I had my white color Mongoose mountain bicycle stolen where I live in downtown Dickinson.  This bicycle had a 1/2″ diameter steel Master Lock cable going through its frame and tires.  The thieves made an unsuccessful attempt, then came back one week later with a Dremel type cutting disk, and cut through the steel cable.   I say “thieves”, because there were two of them, the theft was recorded by my security camera.

The Mongoose mountain bicycle that was stolen from me was rare.  In the seven years that I owned it, I never ever saw another one like it where I bought it in Texas, or in Idaho, Utah, and North Dakota where I was living.  It had a white frame, with green/black accents, and green/black parts.

My white Mongoose bicycle, and especially Matt’s rare, collectible bicycle, could not be painted without destroying the value.  Even if my stolen bicycle, or Matt’s stolen bicycle were painted, we would still be able to recognize our bicycles.  The point is, whoever stole our bicycles, can’t ride them or try to sell them in Dickinson, and they know it.

Unpainted, at a glance I could recognize my stolen Mongoose bicycle 1/8 mile away on the street, driving by a yard, porch, or open garage.  Matt could recognize his stolen bicycle the same as I could identify mine.  Either one of us spotting our stolen bicycles would result in us stopping the rider, going up to where it was located, talking to whoever had it, and then calling the Police.

It became apparent that these stolen bicycles aren’t being sold or ridden in Dickinson.  I will explain again, that these are not kids doing this.  The thieves recorded by my security camera stealing my bicycle were not kids.  Kids don’t come out at 2:00 a.m. with large bolt cutters and Dremel tools, to cut chains and lock cables.

In any case, even if it were kids who were stealing our bicycles, they are not selling them or riding them in Dickinson.  These stolen bicycles are being stored somewhere, out of sight, in someplace like a backyard with concealment, a basement, garage, utility shed, house, trailer, or van.

There would be no point in stealing these bicycles if the thieves couldn’t sell them or ride them in Dickinson.  The thieves must be taking these stolen bicycles to some place like Bismarck.  Bismarck is the closest large city, 100 miles to the east.

The four hour, 200 mile round trip to Bismarck with stolen bicycles wouldn’t be worth the time and the cost of the trip, unless the thieves had more than several stolen bicycles to sell.  This means that the thieves have to be using either a van or an enclosed utility trailer to make the trip to Bismarck, or wherever they are traveling to sell these stolen bicycles.

Is has occurred to me, and other people have commented to me, that it should not be that difficult for the Police in Dickinson to find out who has a van load or trailer load full of stolen bicycles.  They just have to catch the bicycle thief one time, or a neighbor has to see this happening and report it, or a criminal in custody has to snitch, or an informant has to tell, and then its over for this bicycle theft ring of criminals.

It’s kind of like the Police in Dickinson are allowing this to happen, like this is harmless.  I wonder if the Police in Dickinson aren’t using some kind of logic like, “If we let these people steal small things, and commit small crimes, then they won’t have to commit big crimes like armed robbery.”

I wish that the Police in Dickinson would try to stop all crime, and not have any tolerance for any crime.  But, crime in Dickinson is not entirely the fault of the Police.  The Judges and the Department of Corrections keep letting all the criminals loose on parole/probation instead of jail/prison.

The People, Police, And Judges In Dickinson Need To Change Their Attitude About Crime

In 2017 through 2019, many times it seemed like the crime in Dickinson, North Dakota was out of control.  I had never personally experienced very much crime in Dickinson until I moved to downtown Dickinson in the spring of 2017.  Within a couple of months my pickup truck was stolen.

By making flyers with a photograph of my stolen truck, and handing these flyers out all over Dickinson and the neighboring towns, I eventually received some phone calls and leads about who had stolen my truck.  I found out, the person who had stolen my truck, he very recently had been released from prison for vehicle theft, and that there was currently a warrant out for his arrest for possession of stolen property.

I got my truck back about a week after I found out who had it.  In the process of trying to find my truck, I read the complete criminal record of the person who had it, and the criminal records of this person’s friends and associates.  This was my introduction to the fact that Dickinson has a large amount of residents who are repeat, continual, habitual, life-long criminals.

One of the things that I used to try to locate my stolen truck and the person who had it, was Facebook.  I looked at this person’s Facebook posts, the people that he was communicating with, who these people were, and where these people were located.

The Facebook posts and Facebook friends, showed that there were easily more than several hundred drug-user, drug-addict, thieving men and women in Dickinson who were not ashamed, and not intending to stop what they were doing.  Their names were familiar from the weekly Dickinson Press newspaper articles “Crimes & Courts” and “Police Blotter”.

I had always been interested in reading the Dickinson Press newspaper articles on crime in Dickinson, reading the names of the people who were caught, and what they had been arrested for, to see if there was anyone that I knew, or to save their names in my memory in case I met them in the future.  But after seeing all the drug-addicts/criminals on Facebook, seeing that they all loosely knew and associated with each other, reading their criminal records on the ND Court Repository, I learned that not only does Dickinson have a large permanent habitual criminal population, but from reading the Dickinson Press, I now saw that these people are continually arrested again, and again, and again, over and over, with no end in sight.

I wasn’t the only person who saw this.  The parent company of the Dickinson Press newspaper, Forum Communications, their owners, editors, staff, and reporters noticed this too.  In August of 2019, Forum Communications, through each of its newspapers published five articles on crime, courts, prisons, parole, and probation written by reporter Sam Easter.  Here is the link to the gateway article: https://www.thedickinsonpress.com/news/crime-and-courts/4046635-Too-big-too-fast-North-Dakota’s-other-housing-problem

The reporter Sam Easter was so thorough and detailed in his newspaper articles, that I think many North Dakotans lost one of the main, most important observations and conclusions:  There are so many habitual, repeat, life-long criminal offenders in North Dakota because they are not being sent to prison, or being kept in prison, because it costs $43,000 per year to keep them in prison, and only $1,700 per year to keep them on parole/probation.

For some of the families in the Dickinson area, a life of crime is just a lifestyle choice.  To them, a little bit of marijuana, a little bit of methamphetamine, a little bit of heroin, some drug dealing, some stealing, some robbery, some check fraud, some assault, fleeing & eluding, probation, and violation of probation, make for a good way of life, that they pass on to their children.

When will you learn, to just put each of these fuckers in prison for ten, fifteen, twenty years, and just leave them there for their entire sentence?  You think that it costs $43,000 per year to keep them in prison, how much does it end up costing when they are not in prison and breeding five to ten children who will be exactly like them?  How much does it end up costing when they are not in prison and introduce 50 to 100 people to meth or heroin and get them addicted?

The People, the Police, and the Judges in Dickinson are too tolerant and lenient on crime.  In the past in Dickinson, there probably were individuals who might have committed a crime only out of desperation, impulsiveness of youth, or drunkenness.  Their criminal behavior might have been corrected by a short time in jail and probation.  But this is generally not the case in Dickinson anymore, the people who are being arrested, have been arrested again, and again, and again with no indication that they are going to stop what they are doing.

The policy or practice of no jail time, suspended jail time, short jail time, and probation is sending a message to the hundreds of habitual repeat criminals in Dickinson that they have nothing to fear, they can keep right on doing what they have been doing.

The Thieving Continues In Downtown Dickinson, North Dakota

At this point, I have written approximately fifteen blog posts about the crime, drug use, drug dealing, theft, and vandalism in downtown Dickinson, North Dakota where I live.

I have covered what got stolen from me, how it got stolen, what got stolen from others, the security cameras I installed, videos from my security cameras, calling the Police, how the Police responded, who got caught, the “Drug House”, and the indicators of thieving about to take place.

In the past year, on four different occasions, myself and my neighbors witnessed people walking beside our vehicles with their cell phone held out in front of them, video recording what was inside our vehicles, so that they could review it later to determine whether the vehicle doors were locked, was there a car alarm, and what was worth stealing.  One time this summer, the Police did catch and arrest one of these people about one hour after he was seen videoing our vehicles.  He was arrested in our neighborhood following a domestic dispute, for fleeing, eluding, resisting arrest, and other charges.

The last three times that myself and my neighbors witnessed someone walking beside our vehicles while video recording, we followed them and watched them from a distance, trying to find out where they were going or where they lived.  When we were spotted by these people while following them, these people did not show up on our city block again.

In the past, I have had some difficulty when I called the Dickinson Police dispatch, because what I was reporting to the dispatcher did not appear to be a crime to them, such as someone video recording what is inside of our vehicles, or someone who does not live in our apartment building walking around the parking lot.  Now, I often hesitate to call the Police, because it mostly does not turn out well, the dispatcher does not understand what I am trying to tell them, why I am calling them, or what I want.

What I want, and why I am calling, is for the Police to come right now and hopefully catch these people in the act of doing what they are doing.  Even if they don’t have any stolen property on their person at the moment, the Police can at least get their I.D., learn who they are, and get a look at them so that they can recognize them in the future.  If anything, this would at least be a deterrent to these people stealing in this neighborhood.

Yesterday at 3:00 p.m. I went outside of my apartment building to my vehicle.  I needed to move some tools from one vehicle to another.  At that time, I noticed a person wearing black pants, black jacket, and a black hoodie pulled up over their head.  They had a bright orange scarf covering their face, and they were wearing a backpack that had a bright orange bottom.

When I first noticed this person, they were on the other side of the street from me, walking in a haphazard, hesitating manner.  Because they were thin with a slight build, and they seemed to be unsure in what they were doing, I believed that this person was in their late teens.  I have seen this behavior before, where a person walking on foot really does not have somewhere that they need to be, and they do not have somewhere that they are trying to get to, and they have no legitimate purpose for being in the area, they appear to be lost, uncertain where they are going, stopping, starting, looking around, hesitating, changing directions.

I stopped attempting to move any tools out of my vehicle, because this person was acting suspicious, and I didn’t want them to see that I had any property in my vehicle, or what I had.  They crossed over to my side of the street, stopped, and looked at my apartment building entrance doors, and acted like they were going to try to enter onto the property.  They began moving like they were going onto the property, then stopped, then changed direction to continue heading south on the sidewalk.  Maybe they saw that there was a security system company sign on the apartment building door, or that there was a magnetic scanner and a magnetic lock on the door.

This seemed strange to me, for a person to briefly act like they intended to enter an apartment building after walking there, as if this was their destination, but then turn away and continue walking on, like this was not their destination.

The very next house that this person came to, was a large two-story house on a double lot that had a for “For Rent” sign out in front of it, that was currently vacant.  This person stopped at the driveway, looked at the house, then stepped into the driveway a few steps, then came out and kept walking south on the sidewalk in a hesitating, halting, no destination, no business being in this neighborhood kind of way.

The next house that this person came to, it had a “For Rent” sign in front of it, and it was currently vacant.  He stopped, waited, looked around, and then he walked up the driveway to this house.  At this point I didn’t know if this person was looking for a vacant house to break into in order to have a place to stay, or looking for whatever he could steal from a house where there was no one home.

Readers from other parts of the country, or women, would probably like to interject that maybe this young man was looking for a house to rent.  Dickinson is a town in the oil field of North Dakota.  One bedroom apartments typically rent for $700 to $1,000 per month.  There aren’t any teenagers renting 4BR/3BA houses in Dickinson.

I called the Police dispatcher, and I said that I wanted to report a suspicious acting person.  I described what this person was doing, and I gave a description of the person.  As I was explaining all of this to the Police dispatcher, this person exited the vacant rental house driveway, and began walking north, back toward the apartment building where I live.

I tried to watch and keep sight of this individual while I waited for the Police to show up.  I saw that this person had now removed their bright orange scarf that was covering their face, and that they had now put their jacket on over top of the backpack that they were wearing.  This person walked past the apartment building where I live, he turned the corner at the next cross street, and he continued walking west.

At the middle of this city block, there is a small employer-owned apartment building where only employees of this company live.  This building is more like individually owned condominium units, because nothing is for rent, and only residents have access keys to enter this building.  This building property and its small parking lot are dead-end, the building property abuts the yards and fences of the neighboring single-family homes.  This is where the suspicious acting person turned into, and he walked through this and other people’s private property.

He cut through this apartment building dead-end private property, and about five minutes later, I saw that he was now back near the vacant rental house adjacent to the apartment building where I live.  He continued walking east.

When the Police Officer arrived, about ten minutes after I had called the Police dispatch, the last time I had seen the suspicious acting person was about two minutes ago.  I told the Police Officer what direction and street the person was walking on.  The Police Officer drove around the neighborhood, but wasn’t finding him.  I got in my vehicle and I drove around looking for him too, but I didn’t see him anywhere either.

I was upset and frustrated.  If you lived in downtown Dickinson, and you had your vehicle stolen like I did, had $2,500 worth of tools and equipment stolen like I did, had your mountain bike stolen, had multiple attempted thefts of property like I did, your neighbors had their houses and vehicles broken into, and you kept seeing people walking by your vehicles video recording what was in them so that they could come back and steal it later, you wouldn’t like people who didn’t live on your city block and had no business being on your block, loitering around for no apparent reason other than to break into a house and steal.

Today, when I had the chance, I called my neighbor Matt to tell him that he needed to quit leaving his doors unlocked because I had seen a suspicious acting person wandering around the neighborhood yesterday.  Matt said, “You know, it’s funny you should say that.  Yesterday evening I thought that I heard noises coming from one of the vacant houses next door, like someone had gotten into one of them.  I swore it sounded like someone was in there.”

Look For People With Phones Taking Pictures Of Your Property In Dickinson, North Dakota

In May through July of this year, I had to telephone the Police in Dickinson about seven times due to the theft or attempted theft of my property, or other people’s property in downtown Dickinson where I live.

What my neighbors noticed in June, was that people would walk beside our vehicles with their phone held out in front of them or beside them, taking pictures of what was inside our vehicles.

In late June, one of my neighbors got in his vehicle, and he tried to follow and take a photo of one of the people who was doing this, but he tried to turn away, and get away in order to not be photographed.  This particular person was arrested out on the street about three hours later for several different charges unrelated to the photographing of property inside people’s vehicles.

Since then, I have caught two other people photographing what was in the back of my truck or inside of my vehicle.  In July, one of these people was a young, plump, red haired girl that was about 14 years old that was out walking her small dog.  I was across the street sitting in my truck talking on the phone one evening, watching this girl walk around the corner and walk down the sidewalk, then she stopped at the back corner of my other vehicle, took her phone out, and began videoing what was inside this vehicle of mine.

I had to stop my phone call, quietly get out of my truck, crouch down below the roof of my other vehicle across the street, sneak over there, and when I stood up at the front corner of my vehicle, the very first thing that she did was try to hide her phone.  I was not mean to her, I explained to her that I had had my property stolen from my vehicle recently, why was she videoing what was in my vehicle?

I waited for her to walk away and around the corner, then I drove down a parallel street, until I could see what house it was that she returned to.  Was she spotting things to steal for an older brother, or do people pay kids to locate things to steal?

The second person that I caught videoing what was in my truck, was in late August.  Me and my neighbor were working on his car on one side of the street, and I looked over to see a skinny man about 27 years old, walking on the other side of the street where there is no sidewalk, walking in the street, passing just an inch beside each vehicle, with his phone held out in front of him, pointing inside of these vehicles.

No, he was not on his phone having a conversation.  No, he was not out getting some exercise.  I waited for him to get to the next corner, where he made a right turn to head east.  I got in my truck, and I followed him, staying about a block away.  At the very next corner he made a right turn, to head south.  When he got to the next corner, he saw me, and he stopped.

It appeared that he lived about one block away, whether it was the shitty house on the corner, or the apartment building across the street, I don’t know.  But he saw me, and he knew, that I knew what he was doing.

For those of you who don’t know what I am talking about, people leave things in their vehicle:  phone, phone charger, music CDs, wallet, purse, laptop computer, camera, radar detector, tools, etcetera.  Rather than stand there for a minute looking through a car window at the dashboard, front seat, back seat, back window, and trying to determine what is there, what kind of stereo is there, what is it worth, is there a car alarm, the thief can just walk by with his phone and video everything in one pass.  He can look at the video later to see what is inside each vehicle.

It appears, that if the people who are doing this are spotted and followed, especially if they are followed all the way back to where they live, and they realize that they have been followed, they temporarily give up their theft plans for that route where they were caught.

A Definitive Answer On Why There Is So Much Crime In Dickinson, North Dakota

I am sick of writing about the crime in Dickinson, North Dakota, and you are probably tired of reading about it.  I began to find the definitive answer on why there is so much crime in Dickinson, but I hesitated to write about it, because I thought that it would be too difficult to explain, though the answer is simple.

I am going to refer readers to a series of recent articles, presented by the Dickinson Press newspaper, sponsored by the North Dakota Newspaper Association, where one of their journalists, Sam Easter, did a very thorough investigation on why there is so much crime in North Dakota.  This journalist presented all of the facts and figures, but he didn’t shout the answer or conclusion loud enough, maybe he wasn’t permitted to do so because of the political implications.  (refer to this link https://www.thedickinsonpress.com/news/crime-and-courts/4046635-Too-big-too-fast-North-Dakota’s-other-housing-problem, at the bottom of this article there is a link to all of the articles in this series.)

Here is the answer:  In the late 1990s, the state of North Dakota made a deliberate transition from consistent stiff incarceration penalties for drug crimes and theft, to less incarceration penalties and more probation for offenders.  The fact is, it costs the state of North Dakota about $43,000 per year to incarcerate an offender, versus about $1,700 per year to put an offender on probation.

These very high-up people in North Dakota government, like the Governors, Attorney Generals, and State Legislators, they tried to present to North Dakotans, that there needed to be more money spent on prisons.  The North Dakotans were, unsurprisingly, too cheap and pinch-penny to want to spend more money on prisons.

In order to remain popular, and to get re-elected, the Governors, Attorney Generals, and State Legislators, they never came out and said, “Listen you dumb sons-of-bitches, if you don’t spend this money to build new prisons, you are going to be overrun with crime and criminals in your communities.”

Instead, the Governors, Attorney Generals, State Legislators, Judges, and Prosecuting Attorneys have implemented this “Probation for Everyone” policy, knowing full well that the communities would become overrun with criminals.  Their belief was probably that once the ordinary citizens became tired of dealing with so much crime and so many criminals every day, that it would come to the point where North Dakotans would ask for more prisons to be built.

The Governors, Attorney Generals, State Legislators, Judges, Prosecuting Attorneys, Probation Officers, and Police Officers know why there is so much crime in Dickinson, North Dakota, but the problem is that the ordinary citizens don’t know.

The prisons in North Dakota are currently completely full, because new prisons have not been built.  Because the prisons in North Dakota are full, with no room for additional prisoners,  people who are convicted of drug crime and theft in North Dakota are given very little jail time, and probation.

Many of the Probation Officers in North Dakota have as many as 130 offenders to supervise on probation, because probation is given rather than incarceration.  The Police in Dickinson have seen for years, that they can successfully arrest someone for possession of methamphetamine and possession of stolen property, the offender is released from jail on bail, the Police arrest this same offender again for another possession of meth and stolen property while they are out on bail awaiting trial, and in the end, this offender only ever spends a month total in jail, and gets probation.

When I looked up the person who stole my truck in 2017 on the North Dakota Court Repository, he should have still been in prison for an arson charge, while he was out committing multiple felony thefts, and he should have been in prison for these multiple felony thefts, while he was out stealing my truck.  He was out of prison on probation, while he was caught in possession of stolen property, and he was out on bail for this possession of stolen property, when he stole my truck.

I e-mailed a judge who had adjudicated many of this thief’s criminal cases over the years to ask him why he kept suspending most of this person’s prison sentences, when this person kept repeating and repeating felony thefts again and again over the past twenty years, and this judge was outraged, and he told me to go ask the prosecutor.

If you read the Dickinson Press newspaper “Police Blotter” or “Crime and Courts” articles, and go look up the people named who have been charged with theft and possession of illegal drugs using the North Dakota Court Repository on the internet, you will almost always find that they are currently on probation for a previous charge of theft and possession of drugs, and in many cases they are currently out on bail awaiting trial for a previous arrest for theft and possession of drugs.

The Police in Dickinson arrest the same several hundred people for theft, possession of drugs, and drug dealing, over and over again, multiple times each year, because these offenders are not being incarcerated, they are being let out of jail almost immediately right back into Dickinson.  Also, these repeat offenders have no fear of committing crime in Dickinson because their punishment is so lenient.

Oops, More Theft Where I Live In Downtown Dickinson, North Dakota

I got tired of writing about, and my readers got tired of hearing about the successful thefts and attempted thefts where I live in downtown Dickinson during May, June, and July.

The last theft that I covered, was the primer-grey color Honda Civic that got stolen from the Drug House at the end of the street where I live on July 14.

On Sunday July 28, my neighbor found a person’s driver’s license laying in the street near the corner of the city block that we live on.  The address on the driver’s license was a residence one city-block to the north, so he walked to that address, and he knocked on the door, in order to return this driver’s license.

The person who answered the door, he said that on Saturday night or early Sunday morning, someone saw his wallet laying on the front seat of his car, that was parked in his driveway.  He said that a thief broke into his car, and took his wallet, which had $600 cash inside of it.

Because the wallet was gone through, and the contents were thrown on the ground, as the thief walked down the street in front of the apartment building where I live early Sunday morning, I was going to offer to go through my security camera footage to see if it showed the thief walking down the street early in the morning.

On Sunday evening when I went to the house where the wallet was stolen, the guy wasn’t home.  His neighbors were home, and they said to me, “Maybe that was the same guy who stole the phone charger out of our car, who accidentally left his flashlight behind.”  I asked when did this happen, and the neighbors said late Saturday night or early Sunday morning.

It looks like the guy who had his wallet stolen, he didn’t even call the Police to report that his car was broken into and his wallet was stolen, because his neighbors didn’t even know that it had happened.  If the neighbors hadn’t picked up and handled the flashlight that the thief accidentally left behind, the Police could have probably gotten his fingerprints off of it.

From what I can tell at this point, it looks like the Dickinson Police Officers who are on patrol duty, they aren’t collecting and piecing together the evidence from reports to lead them to or narrow down the suspects in these thefts in the neighborhood where I live.  It doesn’t look like there is any Police Detective who is doing this either, since there is only one or two detectives in the City of Dickinson Police Department.

It looks like the Police are depending on informants leading them to the thief and/or the stolen property, or they are hoping to catch the thief in the act one night.  A few of us neighbors believe that we are going to have to catch this thief ourselves in order to stop the thefts in our neighborhood.

From everything that has happened recently, my belief now is that the thief lives one city block over, to the east.  He can’t steal things on the street that he lives on, because he could end up getting chased right to the place where he lives.  He has to walk at least one block away to steal things, so that he has a chance to run between houses and through people’s backyards, before he tries to make it to where he lives.