Dakota Access Pipeline protester's trial moved to Fargo
BISMARCK — Red Fawn Fallis will proceed to trial in December, but not in Bismarck.
The Dakota Access Pipeline protester accused of shooting at officers will go to jury trial beginning Dec. 5 in Fargo. On Wednesday, Sept. 13, Chief Judge Daniel Hovland granted defense attorneys' requests for a change of venue.
Hovland wrote that a change of venue from Bismarck to Fargo "is warranted under the circumstances," but not for moving the trial out of state.
"The alleged acts in this case occurred in North Dakota; thus, venue in North Dakota is proper," Hovland wrote.
Fallis, 38, has pleaded innocent to federal charges, including felony counts of civil disorder, discharge of a firearm in relation to a felony crime of violence, and possession of a firearm and ammunition by a convicted felon. Her charges stem from the Oct. 27 incident when she allegedly fired a gun three times as officers tried to arrest her for disorderly behavior near a DAPL protest camp in Morton County.
She has been at the Stutsman County Correctional Center awaiting release to a halfway house in Fargo, pending available bed space, as Hovland granted in June.
Jessica Beheler, media coordinator for the Water Protector Legal Collective in Mandan, lauded Hovland's order.
"WPLC is very pleased Red Fawn's motion has been granted, giving her a much needed and fair advantage in court," she said Wednesday.
Fallis's December trial may last up to four days, according to court documents.