Grace Pastoor covers crime, courts and social issues for the Bemidji Pioneer. Contact her at (218) 333-9796 or email@example.com
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RED LAKE -- Current Red Lake Tribal Secretary Darwin Sumner announced Friday that he plans to run for the position, to which he was appointed in July after the death of Donald Cook, Sr. In a news release Sumner wrote that he has grown to like the job. He decided to run after talking with his family. If elected, Sumner would resign as hereditary chief and pass the position to his son.
LEECH LAKE -- Leech Lake voters decided Tuesday which candidates will move on to the general election in June. The Minnesota Chippewa Tribe’s election ordinance states that if any candidate received more than half the vote in the primary election they will be declared the winner. None of this year’s candidates met the threshold, paving the way for the June race.
BEMIDJI—A second-degree assault charge against a Bemidji man accused of stabbing another was dismissed March 22. Lewis Edward Barney, 47, had pleaded not guilty to the charge March 19. A dismissal signed by Chief Assistant Beltrami County Attorney David Frank said that after Barney was arrested, prosecutors continued to investigate the case. "The state now concludes that it cannot meet its burden to prove this offense beyond a reasonable doubt," Frank wrote. Barney is no longer listed as an inmate in the Beltrami County Jail.
BEMIDJI -- A Maplewood man charged in February with criminal vehicular homicide appeared briefly in court Monday. Michael Joseph Bahl, 34, is now set to appear in court for an omnibus hearing April 30. He was charged Feb. 22 with the August 22 death of his motorcycle passenger. According to a criminal complaint:
RED LAKE—The wreckage of St. Mary's Mission Church hadn't yet cooled when Rev. Jerry Rogers received the first donation to be put toward the construction of a new place of worship. "The very foundation of the building fund is $5, which an elder gave us the afternoon of the fire," Rogers said, three months after the historic Red Lake church burned to the ground in an overnight fire. "She said, 'Father, this is all I have. I want you to use it to build the new church.'"
RED LAKE—Current Red Lake Tribal Chairman Darrell Seki, Sr. announced Friday that he plans to run for re-election, four years after ousting longtime chairman Floyd "Buck" Jourdain. In an announcement provided to the Pioneer, Seki touted four years of achievements and initiatives, shared his plans for the band's future and asked for tribal members' support.
BEMIDJI—A Cass Lake man who arranged to meet and have sex with a person he thought was a child must spend 18 days in jail. Devyn John Bockwitz, 36, received a stay of imposition during a sentencing hearing Tuesday, along with the jail time. This means that if Bockwitz successfully completes his four-year probation his felony conviction of engaging in electronic communication relating or describing sexual conduct with a child will be deemed a misdemeanor.
BEMIDJI -- Each time Karen Stish speaks about her sister Jayne’s murder at the hands of her abusive husband, someone reaches out for help. “Inevitably I will always have one or more people who will come up to me and say, ‘I have someone in that situation that I know,’ or ‘I’m in that situation,’” Stish said to the group of 30 gathered for a local rally against domestic violence. “I’m so thankful that we can give our awareness, make an awareness of what is out there today.”
BEMIDJI -- A Bloomington, Minn., man was charged with a first-degree drug possession Monday after Red Lake police found almost 28 grams of heroin in his pocket. According to a criminal complaint, Red Lake police were searching a house at the 15300 block of Ladota Avenue in Redby on Friday when they encountered Russell Kazell Reed, Jr., 23, and Iyanna King, 20, of Brooklyn Park.
BEMIDJI—A Bemidji man was charged with first-degree aggravated robbery March 15 after he allegedly entered another man's home without permission, tied him up and stole electronics, jewelry, tools and guns. Jordan Anthony Thompson, 24, was charged with the robbery four days before he was taken to the Beltrami County Jail. According to a criminal complaint: