Written by Herald-News
(Editor’s Note: The following blotter is a partial list of activities involving the Wolf Point police and volunteer fire departments between Sept 14 and 20. All those arrested or cited are presumed innocent.)
4:33 p.m., police took a call about harassing telephone calls from a telemarketer claiming to be calling for Microsoft.
7:31 a.m., officers responded to the 200 block of East Johnson Street for a report of trespass to a vehicle and theft with a loss valued under $1,000. The incident remains under investigation.
7:34 a.m., officers responded to the 100 block of Johnson Street for a report of trespass and entry to a vehicle and theft with a loss valued under $1,000. The vehicle was ransacked. The incident remains under investigation.
7:51 a.m., officers responded to Old Town Grill for a report of a fence seriously damaged by a hit-and-run vehicle. The incident remains under investigation.
10:30 a.m., officers responded to Wolf Point High School for a report of an assault by a juvenile male against another male juvenile. Police cited a 15-year-old into the state juvenile justice system.
12:45 p.m., officers responded to the 100 block of East Hill Street for a report of a reckless driver on private property in a light- colored Chevrolet Silverado pickup. The suspect left prior to police arrival.
2 p.m., officers responded to the 400 block of Fallon Street for a report of a theft of two gas weed eaters from a residence with a loss valued under $1,000. The incident remains under investigation.
11:15 p.m., officers responded to Town Pump for a report of a shoplifter stuffing merchandise into his pockets with a loss valued under $1,000. The incident remains under investigation. The suspect fled prior to police arrival.
1:42 a.m., officers responded to Arlo’s Bar for a report of an individual with facial injuries that was transported by ambulance to Northeast Montana Health Services - Wolf Point Campus with non-life threatening injuries. The incident remains under investigation.
4:39 p.m., officers responded to Wolf Point Liquor Market on the 200 block of Anaconda Street for a report of shoplifting with a loss valued under $1,000. The incident remains under investigation.
6:50 p.m., officers responded to Lucky Lil’s Casino for a report of a man lying in the parking lot with a woman sitting on the ground beside him and arrested Elvis Follet Jr., 36, of Wolf Point for public urination and disorderly conduct.
10:20 p.m., officers responded to the 500 block of Main Street for a report of an unidentified male carrying a BB gun and attempting to panhandle money. The suspect left prior to police arrival.
10:20 p.m., officers responded to Wolf Point High School for a report of up to three teenage females assaulting another female juvenile. The suspects left prior to police arrival but were identified and arrest warrants have been issued.
10:26 p.m., officers responded to the 100 block of Indian Street for a report of a band playing loudly.
1:26 p.m., officers responded to the 500 block of Custer Street for a report of a burglary with forced entry and a television, DVDs and clothing stolen with a loss valued under $1,000. The incident remains under investigation.
3:20 p.m., officers responded to Albertson’s for a report of an intoxicated male panhandler banging on cars and arrested Donald Martell Sr., 58, of Wolf Point for public intoxication and disorderly conduct.
9:06 p.m., police observed a dark-colored SUV with taillights not working on U.S. Hwy. 2 near Seventh Avenue West and cited Chelsea Beauchamp, 29, of Wolf Point for driving without a driver’s license.
1:30 p.m., officers responded to Shopko for a report of a shoplifter. The suspect left prior to police arrival. Officers located and cited Harold Garfield, 50, of Wolf Point for theft.
9:46 p.m., officers responded to the 500 block of Main Street for a report of a resident plugging into a neighbor’s outside electrical outlets. No citations were issued.
In addition to the above calls, the WPPD responded to the following calls between Sept. 14 and 20: checks of wellbeing, 16; civil standby, two; domestic disturbance, six; public assistance, 11; motor vehicle accidents, one; removal of unwanted individuals, 20; animal complaints, two; medical assistance, two; alarm, three; assist other agency, one; unfounded reports, six; fireworks complaints, one; driving complaints, six; and school requested assistance, one.
Written by John Plestina
The first photo is Wolf Point Police Department Chief Jeff Harada, portraying a drunk driver who just killed one high school student in a crash and critically injured two others, resisting arrest and claiming his victim ran into him as Roosevelt County Sheriff’s Chief Deputy Corey Reum (left) and deputy Frederick Lee cuff him. The second picture is Roosevelt County Sheriff’s chief deputy Corey Reum kneeling on the hood of the wrecked car attempting to free trapped and paralyzed driver (Jacob Boysun) as Wolf Point Volunteer Fire Department chief Shawn Eggar runs to get equipment from a truck for an extrication. The third photo is the body of a 15-year-old girl on the ground in front of the car she was ejected from. The “dead” girl is Speech and Drama student Jaki Harada, probably playing her most serious role yet. (Photos by John Plestina)
It is unknown whether a realistic simulation of what happens after a drunk driving-caused crash with a death and critical injuries of teenagers shocked many students at Wolf Point High School Friday, Sept. 11.
The program called “Consequences,” was presented for all high school and junior high students with a slogan: “I’m so sorry that I can’t take it back.” It included potential consequences of poor decisions that include driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, texting while driving and not wearing seatbelts, and how a single poor decision could result in major and lifelong changes in their lives and the lives of others.
WPHS speech and drama program students Jacob Boysun, Jaki Harada and Jaime Welch portrayed three critically injured teens in a car driven by an adult drunk driver played by actor/Wolf Point Police Chief Jeff Harada. Numerous law enforcement officers, other first responders, Dr. Mark “Doc Z” Zilkoski, several ER trauma nurses and other hospital staff, and deputy coroner Matt Azure portrayed themselves.
The date, Sept. 11, was significant with the date of the worst disaster this country has ever faced and was one of the few Friday school days this school year for the Wolf Point School District. School was in session due to the Labor Day holiday Monday, Sept. 7.
The program was a partnership of Northeast Montana Health Services [including EMS, and provider and nursing staff], the Wolf Point School District, Wolf Point Police Department, Roosevelt County Sheriff’s Office, Montana Highway Patrol, Wolf Point Volunteer Fire Department, the Roosevelt County Sheriff’s coroner and STAT Air Ambulance Cooperative.
Tacy Strand, a RN and the NEMHS trauma coordinator, told the students that they were about to see what could happen to them in a crash and the aftermath if they make bad decisions.
“Drinking and driving is a bad decision. Not wearing a seatbelt is a bad decision. Texting and driving, which I’m sure you all do, is a very bad decision,” she said.
“You kids still are changeable,” Strand said.
The three-act presentation began in the school parking lot with bleachers set up for all junior high and high school students. In front of them was with a staged t-bone type crash with a full-size Ford pickup having hit the passenger side of a mid-sized car. Both were previously wrecked vehicles. There was an adult drunk driver with only minor injuries who got himself out of the pickup still holding a liquor bottle and a critically injured 15-year-old female passenger in the pickup moaning from injuries. A 16-year-old male driver of the car was also critically injured and trapped. A 15-year-old female passenger was ejected through the windshield and lying on the ground bloody and motionless in front of the wreck.
The first act included the 911 dispatch broadcast over a public address system at the school with a disclaimer that it was a drill and the arrivals of law enforcement, EMS and fire fighters. Sheriff Jason Frederick first tended to the ejected passenger followed by EMS personnel. The 15-year-old girl was pronounced dead at the scene. Azure arrived and her body was taken to the mortuary and prepared for transfer to a pathologist for an autopsy in Billings.
It was revealed to the crowd of students — but not [yet] to the drunk driver — that the dead girl is his daughter.
The drunk driver resisted arrest and was restrained and handcuffed by RCSO chief deputy Corey Reum and deputy Frederick Lee.
A male student seated in the bleachers blurted out: “Mr. Harada, drinking and driving is not cool.”
Later, MHP troopers Dave Moon and Ross Tuggle processed Harada for DUI with a breathalyzer and other sobriety tests, including the HGN, which stands for Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus. The test measures the involuntary jerking of the eyeball when a suspect is asked to follow a pen with his eyes.
The first act included firefighters extricating the trapped driver of the car by cutting the top off and removal of the driver-side door and NEMHS EMS transporting Boysun and the female passenger in the pickup, played by Welch, to the NEMHS – Wolf Point Campus hospital.
At the end of the first act, students were told that a drunk driving crash with a fatality and critical injuries is a crime scene. Fire chief Shawn Eggar told them it took 10 minutes to get WPFD personnel to the scene and another 14 minutes to get the critically-injured driver out of the car.
“Firemen are not just sitting around waiting for those calls,” he said and reminded the students that volunteer firefighters are at their jobs or homes when emergency calls come in.
The junior and senior high students were moved into the auditorium for the second act, with the stage converted into the hospital emergency room with the trauma team activated. Zilkoski, several NEMHS nurses and other hospital staff were present and duplicated their actual ER roles with Welch brought in with a likely head injury and fractures. She was x-rayed and the developed x-rays were put on a screen for the entire audience to see. Doc Z read the x-rays and determined that Welch had a severely fractured arm, a severe scalp laceration and a lung not working.
It was announced to ER staff over a speaker that an additional patient had been extricated and was en route to the hospital via ambulance. Boysun was brought in with no feeling below his mid-chest area. X-rays revealed an upper spinal fracture, a fractured right femur and other injuries.
Two members of the STAT Air Ambulance Cooperative crew that actually flies crash victims from Wolf Point to larger hospitals came into the ER. Both crash victims were flown to Billings for treatment.
Act three followed with debriefings by Zilkoski and Strand.
Boysun suffered a broken neck when Jaki Harada was ejected in the crash and struck him before she went through the windshield. He would spend many months in rehabilitation and physical therapy, the rest of his life in a wheelchair and would have little function in his arms and hands.
Welch would face several surgeries, constant nerve pain and numbness and post-traumatic stress disorder with flashbacks of the crash.
Students were reminded that the aftermath of a real scenario of a similar crash would include life-changing impacts on families and friends.
The video Carly’s Story was shown. It is the story of a teenage girl from western Montana who survived a massive head injury from a 2007 crash where she was not wearing a seatbelt and the lasting impacts on her and her family.
Reum told students that law enforcement officers and other first responders often go home with emotional impacts on them from what they had seen. He said 15 years in law enforcement has affected him.
Students were also reminded that Montana ranks No. 1 in the nation with alcohol-related fatalities per miles traveled. Motor vehicle crashes continue to be one of the top five causes of death in Montana.
Written by John Plestina
All Wolf Point School District schools and Frontier Elementary School were on lockdown Monday, Sept. 14. Wolf Point Police Sgt. Ryan Michaelsen (left) and officer Joey Olson wait at the entrance to Wolf Point High School and speak to every student and school district employee arriving before school. (Photo by John Plestina)
Normalcy seemed to have returned to area schools Tuesday, Sept. 15, following the arrest of a 15-year-old female juvenile from Poplar. Monday, there were precautionary lockdowns of all school buildings in the Wolf Point, Frontier and Poplar school districts with a police presence at each school because of threats.
The Fort Peck Tribes Department of Law and Justice Criminal Investigations Division arrested the juvenile in connection with threats against schools and law enforcement officers.
Wolf Point Police Department, RCSO and tribal officers were present at schools. The WPPD was the lead agency in the joint effort.
Authorities were not specific about the nature of the threats and would not comment on what some people say started with a lover’s spat and threats on Facebook.
According to multiple non-law enforcement sources, a teenage girl made a threat against a boyfriend who is a Wolf Point Junior High student.
“The way we found out about it was it was on Facebook and it was sent to the principal of the high school,” Wolf Point district superintendent Gary Scott said.
“There were threats of shooting police and shooting kids at the school, and there was a direct threat against a boy here at the school,” he said.
A decision was made to lock down WPSD schools, including Northside and Southside elementary schools.
WPPD Lt. Brian Erwin, who lead the multi-agency investigation, confirmed the arrest of the female juvenile during the early evening hours Monday, Sept. 14.
“At this point in time, we don’t believe there are any further precautions at the schools,” he said Tuesday.
“The Wolf Point Police Department during the early morning hours of Sunday the 13th received a complaint of threatening behavior. The initial investigation disclosed that an unknown suspect made threats to Wolf Point schools and continued that behavior towards schools and law enforcement,” Erwin said.
“The threats continued through the early hours of Monday and, as a precaution for our youth, it was the decision of Wolf Point schools to take precautions for students,” he said.
“I believe the schools have a good policy and procedures in place,” Erwin said.
“We received a call from the Wolf Point Police Department that they had received some threats from the Wolf Point schools,” Frederick said.
“Our office detailed a few guys to the Wolf Point schools to make sure the students were safe while the Wolf Point Police Department continued their investigation,” he said.
“Our office also did the Poplar schools just as a precaution. Our officers and the Fort Peck Tribes did the Poplar schools,” Frederick said.
“The girl has ties to Wolf Point,” he said.
“The Wolf Point Police Department tracked an IP address to an address in Poplar. The Criminal Investigation Division with the Fort Peck Tribes served a search warrant on the residence. The criminal investigators received a confession from our suspect,” Frederick said.
“The person on the Facebook account making the threats was fake. It was a fake name,” he said.
“People were scared that gangbangers from Billing were making these threats,” Frederick said.
He said it appears that just one person was behind the threats.
“It was a excellent joint operation by local law enfoldment and the school staffs of Wolf Point and Poplar and Frontier,” Frederick said.
“A threat against children will not be tolerated,” he said.
Written by John Plestina
Volunteer John Leggett puts away donated goods at the food pantry Monday, Sept. 14. (Photo by John Plestina)
With just days until the opening of a new food pantry in Wolf Point that will fill a nearly two-year-long void, people from throughout the area can begin submitting applications Monday, Sept. 21, with food available later next week.
A food delivery is scheduled for Wednesday, Sept. 23.
With a cleanup and renovation that has been ongoing since October 2014, the former Boys and Girls Club building on the corner of Main Street and Fifth Avenue South will house Food Pantry, Inc.
“We just had an inspection yesterday from the sanitarian and we passed,” Rose Green, who has worked on the project since its inception, said Wednesday, Sept. 9.
Repairs have been made to the building that includes damages from the 2011 flood.
The Basket of Hope Food Bank and Thrift Store that was located in two different buildings on the 200 block of Main Street during the 19 years it was in operation closed its doors Oct. 18, 2013, because of a furnace that needed to be replaced, a leaking roof and other maintenance problems in the last building it was housed in. At the time, Basket of Hope had planned to reopen within six months. That did not happen. It first opened in 1994 to serve a need in the community.
The second floor of the building is now the home of the Blue Earth Boxing Club.
Green said the boxing club will help with utility bills and provided volunteers to put together shelves together.
Written by Eric Killelea
Pictured are Abby Kaylor, Cody Larson, Brandi Boysun, Meili Baker and Darryl Ricker.
Southside Elementary School in Wolf Point has welcomed five new teachers for the 2015-2016 school year.
First grade teacher Abby Kaylor, who is from Wolf Point and recently moved back, earned her bachelor’s degree in liberal studies at Oregon State University. She has a master’s degree in teaching at Southern Oregon University along with three years of teaching experience.
Physical education teacher Cody Larson, from Missoula, earned his bachelor’s degree at University of Montana-Western. He recently taught K-12 classes in Trenton, N.D.
Kindergarten teacher Brandi Boysun from St. John, N.D., earned her bachelor’s degree in elementary education at Montana State University and her master’s degree in curriculum and instruction online through the University of Phoenix.
Pre-school teacher Meili Baker graduated from Wolf Point High School before earning her bachelor’s degree in French and business at Seattle University.
Darryl Ricker Sr.
Second grade teacher Darryl Ricker Sr., of Wolf Point earned his bachelor’s degree in elementary studies at American Indian College in Arizona. He has 17 years of teaching experience in Alaska, Montana and Washington.