A trial for the man accused of opening fire on law enforcement in a Grand Forks apartment in May will likely take three weeks, due to the significant amount of evidence that will need to be shown.
On Thursday, Nov. 19, Northeast Central Judicial District Presiding Judge Donald Hager granted the attorneys on Salamah Pendleton's case a continuance to give them the opportunity to find three available weeks in the court calendar for the trial.
Pendleton, 42, is accused of firing 41 rounds of an AK-47 at law enforcement after two Grand Forks County Sheriff's Deputies attempted to enforce an eviction notice. Pendleton's mother Lola Moore, 61, and Grand Forks Police Officer Cody Holte, 29, were both killed in the shootout. GFCSO Cpl. Ron Nord was injured and has since returned to work.
At Pendleton's final dispositional conference Thursday, a trial date in May 2021 was initially suggested. However, a tribute will be paid to Holte in Washington, D.C., during Police Week in May, and several witnesses will likely be gone during that time. It's likely that the trial will be held sometime in June.
Pendleton is facing two counts of murder, three counts of attempted murder and one count each of criminal mischief, possession of marijuana with intent to deliver, terrorizing and reckless endangerment.
If convicted of murder, he faces a maximum penalty of life in prison without parole. He faces an additional maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and $20,000 for each attempted murder charge if convicted, an additional maximum of 10 years in prison and $10,000 for each charge if convicted of criminal mischief and possession of marijuana, and an additional maximum of five years in prison and $10,000 for each additional charge.