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FARGO — Many people presume that Brooke Lynn Crews will spend the rest of her life in prison because of her role in the murder of Savanna LaFontaine-Greywind and the abduction of her newborn baby. But is that a certainty? Legal experts say it is not. Crews pleaded guilty in December to conspiracy to commit murder, conspiracy to commit kidnapping, and providing false information to police. She is scheduled to be sentenced by Judge Frank Racek at 1 p.m. Friday, Feb. 2, in Cass County District Court.
FARGO — An organization providing legal support for Dakota Access Pipeline protesters has reported that attorneys for Red Fawn Fallis, charged with shooting a handgun at officers during the protests, have reached a plea agreement with prosecutors that would result in her receiving less than the maximum penalty.
FARGO — The trial of William Henry Hoehn, charged in the murder of Savanna LaFontaine-Greywind and the abduction of her newborn baby, has been postponed until May. The trial was originally scheduled to start March 20, but Judge Tom Olson and attorneys in the case agreed at a status conference on Tuesday, Jan. 16, that the date was unrealistic because of information that still needs to be obtained and the desire to send a questionnaire to prospective jurors. After the conference, a new trial start date of May 15 was set.
FARGO — When the North Dakota Legislature in 2009 enacted a law allowing breast-feeding in public, it did something that only one other state did — it specified the circumstances under which breast-feeding is allowed. North Dakota allows breast-feeding in public if the woman "acts in a discreet and modest manner." The law, however, does not define "discreet" or "modest."
In April 2015, members of Girl Scout Troop 34001 went before the Grand Forks City Council to request that council members enact an ordinance prohibiting the idling of vehicles for longer than three minutes, five minutes when the temperature is below freezing. The Girl Scouts also suggested the city post "no idling" signs near schools, since parents often sit in their cars, engines running, waiting to pick up their kids. They told the council such efforts would save money and help the environment.
FARGO—The Fargo Native American Commission has formed a task force to address the issue of missing and murdered indigenous women. Commissioners began discussing the idea in September following the murder of Savanna LaFontaine-Greywind. The 22-year-old Fargo woman, a member of the Spirit Lake nation, disappeared in August while eight months pregnant. Her body was found eight days later in the Red River.
FARGO — Longtime television news anchor Austen Schauer has announced he is running for the North Dakota House of Representatives in November. Schauer told Jim Shaw, guest host of the “Mike McFeely Show” on WDAY-AM on Wednesday, Jan. 3, that he will run as a Republican for the District 13 House seat. District 13 encompasses West Fargo and adjacent areas.
FARGO—The state of North Dakota is implementing four new immunization requirements for children in schools and child care facilities. None involve administering vaccines not already required. Three of the changes modify what grades will be impacted. The fourth change will require a booster for a vaccine that children are now required to receive only once. The state Department of Health, which announced the changes Thursday, Dec. 28, is also changing the deadline by which school students must be compliant with all immunization requirements or be excluded from school.
FARGO — Brooke Lynn Crews, who pleaded guilty last week to murdering Savanna LaFontaine-Greywind and abducting her newborn daughter, said in a letter from the Cass County Jail, "I am ashamed of what I've done" and that she intends to apologize to the victim's family in person at her sentencing. The letter came in response to a letter written by this reporter requesting a jailhouse interview with Crews. It was the second such letter sent. The first was sent Sept. 27 but received no reply. The second was sent on Dec. 12, the day after Crews pleaded guilty.
HANKINSON, N.D. — A change is coming to small-town North Dakota and it began in the southeast corner of the state in Hankinson.. Last February, Dollar General, the giant Tennessee-based discount retailer, opened its first store in North Dakota on state Highway 11 in Hankinson. The move sent fear through the business community of this farming town, population 899. Similar concerns are being felt elsewhere.