ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Petition filed to disband Valley City police

VALLEY CITY, N.D. -- A petition was filed in Valley City Thursday to disband a city police department whose past two police chiefs have attracted controversy.

VALLEY CITY, N.D. -- A petition was filed in Valley City Thursday to disband a city police department whose past two police chiefs have attracted controversy.

City officials will review the petition before it can go out for signatures.

Petition sponsor Robert Drake said the police department should be disbanded because it would save money and prevent miscommunication between police and the Barnes County Sheriff's Department, which is based in Valley City.

"I think that one organization can run more efficiently than two," Drake said.

The sheriff would take over security matters for the city of 7,000 if the police department is disbanded, Drake said.

ADVERTISEMENT

Sheriff Randy McClaflin previously said his department works well with police. He declined to take a position on the petition but said his department is capable of taking over security for the city.

Police Chief Fred Thompson drew criticism in December when he pulled a gun on a father who was playing with airsoft guns on his front yard with his kids. Thompson announced in October that he would resign this month.

Thompson's predecessor, Chief Dean Ross, resigned in 2011 after allegations that he misused public money. The allegations were later dismissed.

Thompson said that disbanding the police department would be a disservice to residents.

The city has 10 days to review the petition. It will need signatures from 15 percent of Valley City voters to get on the ballot, the city auditor said.

Drake said it was likely that the matter would be on the ballot at the June election.

He sponsored the petition with his son, Anthony Drake, and Lloyd Nelson.

What To Read Next
With HB 1205, Reps Mike Lefor and Vicky Steiner would prohibit "sexually explicit content" in public libraries. Facing an uphill battle, the pair remain united in their commitment to see it passed.
The North Dakota Highway Patrol is investigating the crash.
City accountant reports increases in oil impact, sales tax, hospitality tax and occupancy tax revenue during the Jan. 24 meeting, commission approves two policy amendments.
Testimony to the top House committee from a convicted attendee of the Jan. 6 rally focused on the "inhumane" treatment of Jan. 6 defendants. The committee rejected a resolution on the matter 12-0.