Herald Staff Report
MINNEWAUKAN, N.D.—A Warwick, N.D., man accused of setting his home and vehicle on fire in an attempt to collect insurance has changed his plea. Breten Wayne Fredrickson, 59, entered Alford pleas Tuesday in Benson County District Court on six Class C felony charges, including endangering by fire or explosion, terrorizing and criminal mischief. The most serious charge, a Class B felony of arson, was dismissed.
Eastern North Dakota is in a Red Flag Warning through 6 p.m. today as strong winds, dry grass and low humidity create ideal conditions for wildfire outbreaks to occur, the National Weather Service said. The warning is in effect for Cavalier, Pembina, Walsh, Nelson, Grand Forks, Griggs, Steele, Traill, Barnes, Cass, Ransom, Sargent and Richland counties. In northeast North Dakota, the National Weather Service calls for southwest winds of 15 to 20 mph with gusts up to 35 mph, relative humidity as low as 16 percent and temperatures in the low to mid 80s.
Mule deer populations in western North Dakota are similar to last year and 45 percent above the long-term average, the Game and Fish Department said Monday in reporting results from its annual spring mule deer survey in April. Biologists counted 2,540 mule deer in 245.8 square miles during this year's survey. Overall mule deer density in the Badlands was 10.3 deer per square mile, compared with 10.9 in 2017.
A Red Flag Warning is in effect today until 7 p.m. across large portions of North Dakota and Minnesota in response to gusty winds and continued dry conditions. "Dry air and strong winds will combine with dry grasses to create critical fire conditions this afternoon and early evening," the National Weather Service office in Grand Forks said on its website. "Any fire that develops will have the potential to grow rapidly. Use caution in dry grasses with any machinery."
ST. PAUL—The Minnesota Board of Animal Health is asking horse owners to do their part to stop the spread of a highly contagious horse disease recently confirmed in North Dakota and South Dakota. Equine Herpesvirus Myeloencephalopathy—or EHM, for short—is a potentially fatal and reportable disease. The last case of EHM diagnosed in Minnesota was in 2015. The disease was confirmed last month in a well-known barrel-racing horse in Bowman County, N.D., the North Dakota Department of Agriculture reported.
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Grand Forks Police are asking for help locating a 25-year-old man who has been missing for several days. Duane Joseph Bundy was reported missing by his family, according to a Facebook post by the police. A photo of Bundy shows him to be a white male with dark hair, a beard, a mustache and glasses. "Duane is known to frequent the Gilby (N.D.) and Johnstown (N.D.) areas and usually hangs out anywhere music is being played," the post said. Those with information are asked to call the Grand Forks Police Department at (701) 787-8000.
The Grand Forks Police Department has released photos of suspects from an armed robbery that injured one person this weekend at a Grand Forks hotel. The three images taken from surveillance footage shows two men walking through the lobby of the Canad Inns. Police responded at 3:33 a.m. Sunday to a report of an armed robbery. The suspects displayed a firearm and threatened two people, one of whom suffered "very minor injuries," according to a news release.
CAVALIER, N.D.— Authorities have identified a Cavalier woman who died Saturday in a crash after a high-speed car chase in Pembina County. Dena M. Peterson, 45, died at Altru Hospital in Grand Forks from injuries that were the result of a rollover crash about a half-mile east of Cavalier on N.D. Highway 5, according to a news release from the Highway Patrol. A Pembina County Sheriff's deputy had initiated a pursuit of Peterson's vehicle around 8 p.m. Saturday after reports of reckless driving near Cavalier, according to the release.
A controlled burn near East Grand Forks has destroyed a building. The blaze started as a controlled burn Saturday about 7 miles south of East Grand Forks, according to the city's fire department. The fire "got out of hand" and ignited a building, which was a total loss, according to the Polk County Sheriff's Office. No one was injured in the blaze, and the structure fire was deemed an accident, the Sheriff's Office said.