Tag Archives: getting stopped by the Police in Dickinson North Dakota

I Talked To The Police Officer Who Stopped Me Last Night In Dickinson, North Dakota

On Monday night, September 30, at 11:00 p.m., I was stopped by a Police Officer in Dickinson, North Dakota for failure to come to a complete stop at a stop sign.  I had waited until late at night to drive to WalMart for groceries, because I didn’t want to go to the store when it was busy and crowded.  I was not in a hurry at all, I was driving less than the speed limit, and the last thing I was expecting was to be stopped by the Police.

When the Police Officer asked me for my driver’s license, registration, and proof of insurance, I told the Police Officer that I would have to look on my phone for a copy of my proof of insurance.  At the moment, I could not remember whether I had taken a photograph of the insurance card off of my computer screen, or if I had had this insurance card e-mailed to me.

I bought this vehicle that I was driving, six weeks ago.  Initially, what I had placed in the glove box as proof of insurance, was the price quotation that State Farm Insurance had faxed to me, the form that I had to sign and fax back to State Farm Insurance, and I had a photo on my phone of the check payment written out to State Farm Insurance with the dollar amount matching the price quote for this vehicle, the date, and in the memo section the make, model, and year of this vehicle.

The Police Officer was not believing me that I had insurance on this vehicle, even after I showed him the paperwork that I had in the glove box, and the photo of the check payment for insurance on this vehicle.  I had other proof of insurance cards on my phone for other vehicles of mine, but not this one.  I tried to go to and log onto my e-mail, but I couldn’t get the log in page to come up on my phone like it does on my computer.

The Police Officer mentioned to me that failure to have insurance or proof of insurance was a $140 fine, which was not that big a deal to me.  As he was writing my ticket, I was able to get to my e-mail on my phone, go back to August, and luckily I found the proof of insurance card for this vehicle.  I handed my phone to the Police Officer, and he looked at my proof of insurance card for this vehicle.

The Police Officer gave me a ticket for failure to stop at a stop sign, which he explained was $40 and three points on my driver’s license.  I explained to the Police Officer, that I know that the Police in Dickinson are trying to stop as many people as possible in order to try to discover drug crime, but for people like me who are not criminals, this is a problem because I have been stopped three time by Law Enforcement in the past sixty days.

When I got home and I began looking on the internet to try to see how many points would go on my Idaho driver’s license, when these points would appear on my driver’s license, what online driver course I could take to get these points removed, and when I would need to take this online driver course, I found out that I nearly got nine points on my driver’s license for this traffic stop, and that the next time that I got stopped within the next twelve months, my driver’s license would automatically be suspended.

What I did not know or understand at first, was that there is no ticket for failure to have proof of insurance, there is only a ticket for failure to have insurance.  If I would have paid the $140 ticket for what I thought was failure to have proof of insurance, I would have actually been admitting to not having liability insurance, which in North Dakota on the first offense carries a penalty of six points on your driver’s license, and for the second offense twelve points on your driver’s license.

I had no idea that on the way home from WalMart at 11 p.m., not coming to a complete stop at a stop sign, would result in me losing my driver’s license.  But it’s worse than that, I didn’t understand what was going on, I didn’t understand how important it was to show more proof of insurance than what I had with me at the time, I didn’t know that paying the ticket for $140 would have been automatically admitting that I didn’t have liability insurance, which I did have liability insurance, I didn’t know that I would have had nine points on my license immediately, I would not have known that the next time I got stopped within the next twelve months that my driver’s license would automatically be suspended, … and I would have been driving around with a suspended driver’s license and not had any idea.

On Tuesday, I called a couple of DMV and IDT offices in Idaho to try to get some answers on how to handle the traffic ticket that I got on Monday night, to ask if and when the points would go on my Idaho driver’s license, and when and how many times could I take the online driver safety course to get the points removed from my driver’s license.

On Tuesday I called a couple of DMV and NDOT offices in North Dakota to ask questions, though the people in Bismarck were nice, they didn’t have all the answers.  I called the Dickinson Police Department to try to ask to speak to a Police Officer that I already knew like Shift Sergeant Moser, Officer Kinto, or Officer Bates, but was told no.  It was suggested to me that I speak to either the Police Officer who gave me the ticket, or his Shift Sergeant Jason Wallace this evening.

To clarify for those people reading this blog post who don’t understand why this is such a big deal to me:  My home is in Idaho 750 miles away, I am just here in Dickinson, North Dakota to work.  My work location is more than sixty miles from Dickinson, out in the middle of nowhere.  If I lose my driver’s license, I will lose my job.  I have trucks, trailers, and equipment that I have brought to Dickinson to do self-employed work, but without a driver’s license, I couldn’t do my self-employed work either.

If I lose my driver’s license, then my job, I don’t have anyone here to help me.  I don’t have any good friends here, any family members here, any church relationship here, any attorney or accountant business relationships here.  Without a driver’s license, without a job, without any income, that is when I would probably want to hire an attorney to try to help me get something like a temporary restricted license to drive to work, but the attorney would want thousands of dollars, and the Dickinson Police would just cause me to lose my restricted license as soon as possible.

I would not have had any idea that I was getting a total of nine points on my driver’s license by paying the $40 ticket and the $140 ticket from this traffic stop.  I would not have gotten any notification about the nine points on my driver’s license, because I have an Idaho driver’s license.  Any mail from the state of Idaho would be sent to my home or my P.O. box in Idaho.

I have to keep my Idaho driver’s license and do other things like pay state income tax to Idaho, as well as North Dakota, to legally claim Idaho residency.  My home in Idaho is protected from any kind of lawsuit judgement if it is my primary residence, my homestead, but not if it is classified as a second home or investment property.

Getting back to the point, I keep getting stopped so frequently by Law Enforcement in Dickinson, because they are trying to stop drug crime, that I am in danger of having my driver’s license suspended, being arrested for unwittingly driving on a suspended license, losing my job, having no way to earn a living, losing my apartment, and not even being able to drive my equipment and vehicles back to my home in Idaho.

I spent some time looking up on the internet the Police Officer who stopped me and gave me the ticket on Monday night.  He graduated from Dickinson State University about one year ago, he became a Police Officer about six months ago, and he is about 25 years old.

I called the Dickinson Police Department late Tuesday night when this Police Officer was back on duty, and I said that I wanted to ask him some questions about the ticket he gave me, and that I would like to meet him somewhere if possible.  The Dickinson Police Department got a hold of him, and he called me back.

I asked him if I had not found the State Farm Insurance card on my phone, would he have written me a ticket for failure to have liability insurance, he said yes.  I asked him if he would have told me that this ticket for not having insurance carries a six point penalty on your driver’s license, he said yes.  I explained to him, that I had no idea that paying the $140 ticket for failure to have liability insurance means that you agree that you have no liability insurance, I did have liability insurance.

I tried to explain to him again, better than I explained it to him on Monday night, that I understand that the Police are trying to detect crime, but the way that the Police are scrutinizing my driving, and the frequency at which the Police are stopping me, that I am going to lose my driver’s license.  I don’t think that I can drive perfectly all the time.  I am not a criminal, but the Police are turning me into a criminal, to where I am going to end up driving on a suspended license.

I briefly explained that the way that the Police are stopping me so often, that I am going to lose my driver’s license, then lose my job, then lose my home.

This Police Officer explained to me that he was just doing his job.  That he has to enforce traffic laws for public safety, people can’t speed and run stop signs just because they want to.  I explained to him that I don’t speed, that I drive slow, I am always being tailgated, and that I have to pull over to let people pass me all the time.  I didn’t run the stop sign, I just didn’t come to a complete stop.

After I got off the phone with this Police Officer, I had the impression that he believed that he was just doing his job, though I don’t think that he understands the impact of what he is doing.

People are supposed to have the right to travel freely in the U.S.  The whole point of the first communities in the U.S. creating government and Police Officers was to maintain peace and order, not for the Police to hide and sneak up on citizens to try to get them for something like the citizens are prey, enemies, or criminals.

If there is supposed to be a curfew at night in Dickinson, which I agree with, then this law should be voted on by citizens and then published as law.  In effect, what the Police in Dickinson are doing, is they have created a curfew law all on their own.  I see very few people driving at night in Dickinson, and I think that it is because they are scared of getting stopped by the Police and cited for something.

It has been pointed out to me by other people, which I realized was the truth, new, clean, expensive vehicles in Dickinson do not get stopped by the Police.  I just about never have seen a new, clean, expensive vehicle stopped by the Police in Dickinson, its always older less expensive vehicles that get stopped by the Police.

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.