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Kidnapper of Savanna's baby moved to new prison for his own safety

William Hoehn was sentenced Oct. 29 to life in prison with the chance of parole for his role in kidnapping Savanna LaFontaine-Greywind’s baby. Forum file photo1 / 2
Savanna LaFontaine-Greywind2 / 2

FARGO — A Fargo man who's in prison for helping kidnap the baby of Savanna LaFontaine-Greywind has been transferred to an out-of-state facility for his protection, according to the North Dakota Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.

William Hoehn, 33, was moved Thursday, Feb. 28, from the North Dakota State Penitentiary in Bismarck to an undisclosed prison in another state for “protective management purposes,” related to the nature of his crime against LaFontaine-Greywind, said DOCR spokeswoman Michelle Linster, who did not elaborate on the reason for the move.

When asked if an incident at the State Penitentiary or threat to Hoehn prompted the move, Linster said information on such occurrences, if they happened, would be exempt from public record. She also declined to disclose his location, citing North Dakota law that exempts that information.

“We can’t tell you where he is at because then it ... could put him in danger,” she said.

Linster said she couldn't say whether Hoehn was injured during his stay at the State Penitentiary, citing laws that keep medical records private.

Hoehn was taken to the facility on Nov. 19 after he was sentenced on Oct. 29 to life in prison with a chance of parole for his involvement in the kidnapping. A jury acquitted him of a conspiracy to commit murder charge, with prosecutors arguing he helped his then-girlfriend, 39-year-old Brooke Crews, kill LaFontaine-Greywind.

The 22-year-old woman’s body was found in August 2017 in the Red River, and Crews testified during Hoehn’s trial that she cut open LaFontaine-Greywind's womb and removed her baby, who survived the crude procedure.

Hoehn faced a maximum of 20 years in prison for the kidnapping charge, but he was sentenced to life with the possibility of parole after a judge determined he was a “special dangerous offender.” Hoehn has appealed the sentence.

Crews pleaded guilty in 2017 to kidnapping and conspiracy to commit murder. She's serving a life sentence without the chance of parole in the Dakota Women’s Correctional and Rehabilitation Center in New England, N.D., where she's being housed with the general inmate population.

The nature of Crews and Hoehn's crimes angered the public and inflamed sentiments against them. Such sentiments could carry over to inmate populations, Cass County Jail Administrator Andrew Frobig previously told The Forum when talking about Crews being segregated from other jail inmates due to safety concerns.

"She's pretty much Public Enemy No. 1," Frobig has said of Crews. "And I don't want anybody doing anything impulsive that might one, cause her harm, or two, cause new charges for somebody else trying to seek revenge."

As of Friday, March 1, the DOCR had 22 prisoners in out-of-state facilities for varying reasons, including protective management, Linster said.