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Suspect arrested, witness sought as police investigate Fargo homicide

Crime scene tape surrounds an apartment building at the corner of 10th Street North and Seventh Avenue on Friday, March 2. Robin Huebner / Forum News Service

FARGO – Police have arrested a suspect in a homicide currently under investigation in the city’s north side, Chief David Todd said Friday, March 2.

Daniel Benjamin Habiger, 29, of Fargo, allegedly told an emergency dispatcher around 6:20 a.m. Friday that he was involved in an assault that resulted in a man’s death.

Officers soon arrested him at the gas station where he made the call, Todd said, and found the body in his apartment at  701 10th St. N.

Police are now seeking a homeless man, David Patrick Williams, 45, who may have witnessed the assault, the chief said.

Habiger, who is being booked into jail, has not been charged, according to Cass County State’s Attorney Birch Burdick. His office has been briefed by police but hasn’t seen the police report.

The prosecutor said some of the legal process will take place over the weekend, and Habiger will likely be in court Monday, March 5.

Todd said he won’t release the identity of the victim until family members have been notified.

The chief characterized the assault as a “physical altercation,” but said he can’t talk about the cause of death or if a weapon was involved.

Earlier in the day, Fargo Police Department’s critical-incident command vehicle could be seen parked near the apartment at the corner of Seventh Avenue North and 10th Street North. The building was cordoned off with yellow crime scene tape and investigators were digging through a nearby dumpster.

Todd said it’s normal for investigators to comb the neighborhood looking through garbage or interviewing neighbors after incidents of this kind.

Court records show that Habiger has a raft of criminal convictions in North Dakota. Many are misdemeanors involving alcohol, but he also has Cass County convictions for felony simple assault in 2008 and felony aggravated assault in 2015.

Habiger also has a criminal record in Minnesota, including a felony conviction for fleeing in 2016, according to court records.

In January, police investigated the same building following a report of a shooting there.

In that case, a man approached an officer on patrol nearby around 11 p.m. Jan. 11 and said he'd just been shot. While the officer tried to help him a second victim approached with a head injury. Both were taken to the hospital.

They told police that a masked man knocked on their door, forced his way in and assaulted them.

Todd said it’s true that police have been to the apartment building several times but there doesn’t appear to be any connection between the alleged January shooting and Friday’s assault.

Forum News Service

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