A Minot man alleges that he was mistreated during a traffic stop | News, Sports, Jobs
A Minot man alleges he was racially profiled and injured during a traffic stop on the evening of August 7.
Pierce Harris was driving on the Burdick Expressway on his way to a park with his infant son and the child’s mother. According to an affidavit provided to Minot Daily News, a Ward County Sheriff’s Deputy was driving west on Burdick and noticed Harris’ Silverado pickup had no plates and the vehicle’s windows were tinted. . He had trouble deciphering the provisional registration. Harris said he turned off Burdick and the deputy followed him to trigger a traffic stop.
Harris and passenger Jerrolyn Esau recorded the interaction in two different cellphone videos that were provided to Minot Daily News. The interaction was controversial from the start. The deputy informed Harris that his recording was not viewable, which Harris disputed. Harris was repeatedly ordered out of the van, which he eventually did with his cellphone in hand.
According to the affidavit, the deputy tried to take it from him so it wouldn’t be used as a weapon, but Harris didn’t give up the device. This resulted in Harris being forcefully grounded by the two sheriff’s deputies. In the video, Harris cries out in pain as officers lean on his shoulders and head, but take the pressure off as soon as Harris is restrained.
Responding officers spoke with pedestrians who said they saw the driver of the van throw a syringe through the driver’s side window. The vehicle was searched and examined by a K9, but found no additional drugs or paraphernalia. Harris said in the video that he didn’t throw away the syringe and that his window was closed the entire trip because he was running the air conditioning at the time. Harris was later placed under arrest for preventing the arrest and unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia other than marijuana, both Class A misdemeanors.
After being booked, Harris was taken to Trinity Hospital for treatment for a leg injury and abrasions resulting from throwing as well as an asthma attack, where Harris requested that a panel of drugs be taken. carried out. Based on documents provided to the Minot Daily News, one was ordered, but Harris claims he was not given the opportunity to provide a sample for testing before being released and returned to custody.
Harris posted bond that night and had his first appearance before Judge Todd Cresap on August 22.
Harris is representing himself in the case and has pleaded not guilty to both counts, although he was offered a deal that would have dismissed the possession charge in exchange for a guilty plea for resisting on arrest.
Harris said he filed a complaint with the Ward County Sheriff’s Office. His trial is scheduled for November 2.
Sheriff’s representatives declined to comment on an ongoing case.