April Baumgarten joined the Grand Forks Herald May 19, 2015, and covers crime and education. She grew up on a ranch 10 miles southeast of Belfield, where her family raises registered Hereford cattle. She double majored in communications and history/political science at Jamestown (N.D.) College, now known as University of Jamestown. During her time at the college, she worked as a reporter and editor-in-chief for the university's newspaper, The Collegian. Baumgarten previously worked for The Dickinson Press as a city government and energy reporter in 2011 before becoming the editor of the Hazen Star and Center Republican. She then returned to The Press as a news editor, where she helped lead an award-winning newsroom in recording the historical oil boom.
Have a story idea? Contact Baumgarten at 701-780-1248.
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Two years of waiting for medical marijuana to be made available in North Dakota is almost over, and dispensaries are likely just months away from opening. The state Department of Health has named two companies to manufacture medical marijuana in North Dakota and selected four businesses to open dispensaries in Fargo, Bismarck, Williston and Grand Forks. Former UND hockey and NHL player David Hale and business partner Jon O'Keefe will open the Grand Forks location under the name Strive Life.
A Grand Forks woman has been acquitted on sexual assault and attempted murder charges related to accusations she beat a woman with a hammer. She was found guilty on a lesser charge but will face no additional jail time in the case. Rebecca Dakota Grant, 31, smiled after a Grand Forks District Court clerk read the verdict Friday evening in the case that stemmed from a May 22 incident that left a woman injured. The woman accused Grant of raping and sodomizing her, as well as beating her with a claw hammer.
The North Dakota Supreme Court has ruled against the city of Grand Forks, saying it had to read a consent advisory to a suspect before administering a chemical test related to a driving under the influence case. In a unanimous decision, justices affirmed the Grand Forks District Court's decision to side with Thomas Arthur Barendt.
Langdon Area Public Schools went into lockdown Thursday morning School officials declined to give details on what caused the lockdown other than to say there was a safety concern regarding a student. The incident happened in the high school and middle school building, but all the Langdon Area Public Schools went into lockdown, according to the school’s Facebook page.
North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum said his budget goes "back to the basics" because it focuses on strengthening the state's financial position, building up reserves and "living within our means" without raising property taxes.
Plans are starting to come to light for the Grand Forks Herald building downtown, including proposed uses for a school district student transitional education program, a downtown library branch and space for city staff.
DEVILS LAKE—An East Grand Forks man wants to open a medical marijuana dispensary in Devils Lake. Aaron Hall has submitted an application to the city of Devils Lake that details plans to open what he has dubbed the Devils Lake Dispensary at 810 10th St. S.E. Sketches and a letter from Hall speak of making changes to the building at the site.
A Grand Forks Public Schools committee has recommended renting space in the Grand Forks Herald building for educating students with specials needs who are slated to transition back into school buildings. The facilities committee unanimously approved a two-year lease agreement Monday that would allow the district to rent about 2,100 square feet in the Herald building for about $30,232 a year. That doesn’t include utilities, taxes and other fees.
WALHALLA, N.D.—A Walhalla man broke into a woman's home, sexually assaulted her, tied her up with her own clothing and threatened to slit her throat as he left, court documents allege. Benjamin Robert Hannesson, 32, is set to appear Dec. 10 in Pembina County District Court on multiple counts, including a Class AA felony of gross sexual imposition. If convicted, he could be sentenced to life in prison without parole.
A Belcourt (N.D.) School Board member was arrested this weekend at a Mandan hotel after allegedly saying he would kill a woman. Jeremy Lee Laducer, 44, appeared Monday in Morton County District Court on a Class C felony count of terrorizing and a Class B misdemeanor of disorderly conduct. The former charge carries a maximum punishment of five years in prison.