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Teen falsely reported fire to get a date, police say

WEST FARGO — An 18-year-old high school student could face criminal charges after falsely reporting a fire in an effort to get a date, police said.

Assistant Police Chief Michael Reitan said police and fire crews found nothing wrong when they responded to the report of a fire at the Lodoen Community Center about 2:25 p.m. Wednesday.

Responders were still on the scene when a second report was made through 911, he said.

Police tracked the calls to two West Fargo businesses and tracked down the caller using a partial license plate number of a vehicle seen at both places, Reitan said.

The vehicle’s owner, a teenager, was questioned by officers and said he made the calls in the hope that dance line practice occurring at the center would be canceled. He knew one or more of the dance line members and was hoping to get a date with a dancer, Reitan said.

Reitan said a report has been sent to the Cass County Attorney’s Office for a possible harassment charge. The Class A misdemeanor carries a sentence of up to a year in jail and a $3,000 fine.

The teen’s name has not yet been released pending possible charges.

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