Jordan Shearer covers crime and social issues for the Bemidji Pioneer. A Rochester native and Bemidji State grad, he previously spent several years in western Nebraska writing for the Keith County News. Follow him on Twitter @Jmanassa
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BEMIDJI—Police Chief Mike Mastin cautioned in a Friday press release the spread of misinformation following the recent officer-involved shooting death of Vernon May in late November. "It is important that people not promote a false narrative that spreads hate throughout our community," Mastin said. "Doing so does not allow our community to heal and move forward." In addition to warning against misinformation, Mastin reiterated the fact that the investigation will take time to complete.
BEMIDJI—A Minneapolis man who previously led a high speed chase through the Nymore area of Bemidji has picked up an additional charge of obstructing the legal process. According to court documents, a female called the authorities after she found Donald Fransisco Negron, 25, in her home in Bemidji at approximately 6:30 a.m., Dec. 9. The officer asked Negron to leave. Negron, however, appeared to be under the influence and insisted he lived in the home. There was no indication in the complaint whether Negron broke in or how he may have gained access to the residence.
RED LAKE—Officials are looking for a missing Red Lake man who hasn't been seen since late October. Dillon James Sayers, 26, has not been seen since Oct. 23. He was then reported missing Oct. 30. Authorities are not sure why he may have disappeared. The Minnesota Department of Corrections has listed Sayers as a fugitive since Oct. 31.
BEMIDJI -- The law enforcement officers involved in a recent fatal shooting have no complaints filed against them or any disciplinary actions in their personnel files to date.
WALKER—A Cass County man has been charged with second-degree murder after allegedly stabbing his mother multiple times at her home in Bena. In addition to the homicide charge, Thomas Wayne Matthews, 34, is facing three counts of second-degree assault and one count of fifth-degree assault after an incident at a Bena business in late November. Bena is located 35 miles east of Bemidji on the Leech Lake Reservation.
BEMIDJI—Although more than a week has passed, not much is known about the officer-involved shooting of Vernon May. Within two days of the Nov. 28 shooting, the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension released the names of May, as well as the Bemidji Police officer and the Beltrami County Sheriff's deputy involved in the incident. Other than that, the agency hasn't released any new information about the shooting, which has garnered substantial speculation throughout the community. There also is no indication how long the investigation may take.
BEMIDJI -- A Bloomington, Minn., woman was sentenced to four years in prison Monday for her part in a first-degree aggravated robbery in Beltrami County in March. In addition to her prison sentence, Danielle Diane Goodman, 21, was sentenced to 15 years of probation. Goodman pleaded guilty to the charge in October after initially pleading not guilty in April.
BEMIDJI—In the era of the "personal shopper," 7-year-old Carlie Hlavac has the system licked. Flanked by two firefighters nearly twice her height, Hlavac meandered around Target on Tuesday, trying to decide the best way to spend her allotted budget of $100. Ben Eckstein, one of the two firefighters, kept a running tally in a notebook of the amount she'd spent so far.
BEMIDJI -- The Bureau of Criminal Apprehension confirmed Friday that Vernon May, 34, of Red Lake, was the man local law enforcement officials shot and killed Wednesday night during a traffic stop in Bemidji.
BEMIDJI -- The Beltrami County Attorney’s Office has charged five people in connection to the death of a minor who fell from the seventh floor of BSU’s Tamarack Hall in late September.