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CHILD ABUSE SENTENCE
St. Michael man sentenced on child neglect charge
A man has been sentenced to a year in prison for failing to care for his children on the Spirit Lake Indian Reservation.
Forty-two-year-old Nathan Jones Jr., of St. Michael, pleaded guilty in August to felony child abuse and neglect.
Authorities say Jones, who is the parent of six children, admitted to leaving his children unsupervised on three separate occasions because he was drunk.
Jones is also accused of failing to bring a child to dental appointments, resulting in the removal of the child's teeth, and failing to provide treatment for a child's severe skin condition, resulting in bleeding wounds.
The tribe's child protection system has been the subject of numerous inquiries resulting from cases of abuse or neglect on the reservation.
Panel presents findings in Fargo Police probe
(Information in the following story is from: KFGO-AM, http://www.kfgo.com )
FARGO, N.D. (AP) — An independent panel that has been reviewing the Fargo Police Department's disciplinary policies and morale has presented its findings.
KFGO-AM reports the panel's recommendations include improving communication among staff, setting up a balanced disciplinary procedure with checks and balances, providing a strong message of support to staff and examining pay scales.
The findings presented to the City Commission come two weeks after the resignation of Police Chief Keith Ternes.
The panel was established after some former officers raised concerns about morale and administrative oversight. The board interviewed 90 current and former officers, as well as several others from other law enforcement agencies.
The five-member panel includes retired Highway Patrol Superintendent Jim Prochniak, retired Cass County Sheriff's Office Chief Deputy Jim Thoreson and Clay County, Minnesota, Administrator Brian Berg.
LIFE INSURANCE SETTLEMENT
ND to receive $25,000 in life insurance settlement
BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — North Dakota Insurance Commissioner Adam Hamm says the state is set to receive more than $25,000 as part of a multi-state life insurance settlement with Symetra Life and Symetra National Life Insurance Companies.
Hamm on Tuesday said seven states including North Dakota have reached a $1.2 million agreement with the insurer related to its use of the Social Security Administration's Death Master File.
Authorities say Symetra used the file to search for and stop payments to annuity holders, but didn't use it to identify deceased life-insurance policyholders to pay their beneficiaries.
The insurer has agreed to implement a number changes under the settlement. It will use the Social Security's death records on a timely basis to search for deceased policyholders and make payments to their beneficiaries.
Judge puts prior conviction on hold in spud case
FARGO, N.D. (AP) — A judge says a previous conviction against one of two brothers accused of scamming the federal government out of $2 million in crop insurance payments cannot be used as evidence in trial — for now.
Aaron and Derek Johnson, who grew potatoes in the Carrington area, have pleaded not guilty to conspiring to receive illegal payments by intentionally damaging the spuds. Trial is scheduled to begin Monday in Fargo.
U.S. District Judge Ralph Erickson ruled Tuesday that Aaron Johnson's 1995 conviction for submitting a fraudulent disaster claim should not be introduced as evidence, but the judge said he might revisit the issue depending on how the trial unfolds.
The Johnsons are accused of applying chemicals and adding spoiled and frozen potatoes to their stored crop to increase deterioration.
FORT YATES DEATH
Suspicious death investigated on reservation
(Information in the following story is from: Bismarck Tribune, http://www.bismarcktribune.com )
FORT YATES, N.D. (AP) — The FBI and the Bureau of Indian Affairs are investigating what authorities say is the suspicious death of a man on the Standing Rock Indian Reservation.
FBI spokesman Kyle Loven tells the Bismarck Tribune that the man died Saturday night in Fort Yates. No charges were immediately filed.
Loven did not release any more information Tuesday, citing the ongoing investigation.
ATTORNEY GENERAL ORDERS
3 companies ordered to stop doing business in ND
BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem has ordered three companies to stop doing business in North Dakota.
Stenehjem says CS Companies Inc., of Horace, allegedly did not complete construction work for which it was paid.
He says Texas-based Hyper-Phonebank allegedly made illegal telemarketing calls.
And the attorney general says Florida-based Epiphany Management Systems allegedly made phony offers to lower interest rates on credit cards.
HUNTER KILLED-FOOD DRIVE
Food drive honors student killed while hunting
(Information in the following story is from: Minot Daily News, http://www.minotdailynews.com )
MINOT, N.D. (AP) — Students at Minot High School's Central Campus packed up more than 8,500 canned goods and other food items to honor the memory of a classmate who was killed while hunting.
Fifteen-year-old Alex Lutes was killed Nov. 8 while hunting with his father in McLean County. Authorities said the death appeared to be accidental.
The Minot Daily News reports that Lutes was president of the school's Key Club, which holds an annual food drive. Vice President Thea Bonebrake says the drive was held Monday in honor of Lutes, by students who donned T-shirts with "Alex's Army" on them.
The food will be given to charitable organizations such as the Salvation Army.
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