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Witness tampering case against attorney to be dismissed

GRAFTON — Witness tampering charges against a Grand Forks attorney and two of his clients are being dismissed, according to court records.

Walsh County State’s Attorney Barb Whelan has filed a motion in state district court to dismiss the case against attorney Henry Howe and clients Paul Lysengen and Wesley W. Smith.

It’s because of “newly discovered evidence regarding a material witness who was the source of some of the evidence implicating Mr. Howe in this crime,” the motion said. “The State concluded that it would be unable to meet the burden of proof necessary for criminal conviction.”

The material witness appears to be a police informant named Steven Harold Anderson. Howe’s defense team revealed that Anderson had attempted to lie to police before to get a more lenient sentence.

Howe and his two co-defendants were initially charged with plotting to murder a female informant who would be a witness against Lysengen. After information about Anderson came to light, the charge for all three changed to tampering with a witness.

“This case should never have commenced in the first case,” defense attorney David Thompson. “Henry Howe was completely innocent.”

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