Showing posts with label Wayne Stenehjem. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Wayne Stenehjem. Show all posts

Wednesday, September 05, 2012

Bison Football players making national news for voter fraud

The North Dakota State University football team is getting some unwanted scrutiny and press after it was revealed to the media and fans that eight NDSU football players – four of which are starters have been caught in a voter fraud case. That story has now hit the national media and the NCAA site as well. --- Eight North Dakota State University football players, including four starters, are among 11 people charged with faking petition signatures in a scheme that will keep two well-funded initiatives off the November ballot.

Bison coach Craig Bohl said the players will be eligible to play this weekend against Colorado State and any team discipline would wait until after the criminal case was resolved.

The players were hired, at $9 an hour, to gather signatures for two citizen initiatives, one to set up a state conservation fund and the other to make marijuana legal for medical treatments. Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem said Tuesday that many of the petition signatures were copied from phone books or fabricated.

North Dakota Secretary of State Al Jaeger said he was told petition circulators had to get at least 50 signatures each day and those that collected at least 80 names received bonuses. Workers who fell short of those goals would have had an incentive to add names, he said.

Those charged include starting running back Samuel Ojuri, defensive backs Marcus Williams and Brendin Pierre, and offensive lineman Josh Colville. Backup defensive backs Bryan Shepherd and Aireal Boyd, reserve middle linebacker Antonio Rodgers and Demitrius Gray, a freshman wide receiver, also face charges. Gray is a redshirt and does not travel with the team.

School officials said Tuesday that players would be available only to talk about football matters and not the court case. Bohl said he did not expect the charges to be a distraction to the defending Football Championship Subdivision champions.
Yesterday NDSU football coach Craig Bohl said he had known about the ongoing investigation for some time now and none of the players that are involved in the voter fraud scandal will be suspended until after they get their day in court – if ever – honestly, I wouldn't count on any disciplinary action coming from this coaching staff. Of course most of us know, this will probably never hit the court room while the Thundering Herd is playing during the 2012 season, so basically this will be brushed under the table.

If the four are starters – junior running back Samuel Ojuri, junior defensive backs Marcus Williams and Brendin Pierre, and junior offensive lineman Josh Colville are to suffer any consequences they will be minor and come during the offseason when no one is paying attention.

Links to the Story

NDSU football has 8 players under voter fraud investigation - Detroit Lakes on-line

Charges against 8 Bison football players expected in voter fraud case that kills two ballot measures - Fargo Forum

Eight NDSU football players facing fraud charges - StarTribune

Eight NDSU football players face petition fraud charges - Argus Leader

Voter Fraud: Bison players among 11 facing voter fraud charges - Jamestown Sun

Bohl: All eight Bison players charged with voting fraud still on team, will have their day in court - Dickenson Press

8 NDSU football players charged in petition fraud - Minot Daily News

8 NDSU players charged with petition fraud - Yahoo Sports

Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks
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Tuesday, September 04, 2012

EDIT: NDSU Football players back in trouble with the law

As a fan that can remember the NDSU and UND rivalry so many thoughts come to mind – I am sure that others can come up with their own.

Nice to see that nothing has changed at NDSU – also – it will be interesting to see if any of these players are in the lineup next weekend when the Bison play the Colorado State in Fort Collins, Colorado.

"North Dakota State University football coach Craig Bohl says the eight Bison football players charged with petition fraud won't be least for now." You can listen to the press conference that was held on AM 740 the fan.

Don't count on any players for NDSU Sitting out this week... Accroding to Jeff Kolpack of the Fargo Forum - NDSU Head Coach Craig Bohl said he's known about situation for quite some time. Players deserve day in court.

Here is the link to the North Dakota Attorney General’s page... [ND AG]
Forum staff reports, INFORUM --- Eight current North Dakota State University football players and one former player are among 11 people facing charges in connection with voter fraud tied to general election ballot measures.

Four of the accused are starters on the football team.

North Dakota Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem and Secretary of State Al Jaeger identified the individuals charged as: Aireal Boyd, Josh Colville, Josh Gatlin, Demetrius Grey, Jennifer Krahn, Lane O’Brien, Samuel Ojuri, Brendin Pierre, Antonio Rodgers, Bryan Shepherd and Marcus Williams.

All have are charged with facilitation of voter fraud or filing a false statement, according to Stenehjem and Jaeger.

The charges are Class A misdemeanors.

Criminal complaints claim that all circulators of a petition are required to sign an affidavit stating they witnessed all the signatures and that all signatures are genuine.
Some over on Bisonville the Bison fans are taking a wait and see look at the new revelations about their beloved football team –  some seem to think that it’s a minor issue or are already looking for a way to deflect blame and claim that it’s political. Let's blame UND for our problems.

While it's funny because it's NDSU, we will see how this plays out in the coming days; this could end up being a distraction that NDSU didn’t want to have any part of. Some will say that it’s a lot to do about nothing - yeah  okay! I don't think that messing around with elections or committing fraud isn’t something I want to be associated with nor is it a minor infraction.

Break out the tin foil hats

EDIT:One NDSU fan even suggested that this is a conspiracy; I am not making this up. Just for the record – I would highly doubt that the A.G. of North Dakota would simply go on a witch hunt against the other school for something like this.
Wayne Stenehjem was born in Mohall, North Dakota, and he graduated from Bismarck High School in 1971 and Bismarck State College in 1972. He attended the University of North Dakota and the UND School of Law, graduating in 1977.

Jaeger was born in Beulah, ND in 1943. Raised in Beulah, he graduated from its high school in 1961. He attended Bismarck State College and in 1963 earned an Associate of Arts degree. In 1966, he received a Bachelor of Science degree from Dickinson State University majoring in Business Education with a minor in Speech. He also completed post-graduate work at the University of North Dakota
Get out those tin foil hats folks, the North Dakota A.G. is out to get NDSU because he is a graduate of North Dakota.


Lastly, you would have to be a complete imbecil to think that the Attorney General of the great state of North Dakota Wayne Stenehjem and Secretary of the State of North Dakota Al Jaeger would conspire against NDSU just because they went to UND?
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Tuesday, April 03, 2012

Developing - NDSC rules against NDBoHE

University of North Dakota Fighting Sioux athl...
University of North Dakota Fighting Sioux athletic logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
This just in the North Dakota Supreme Court has ruled against the North Dakota Board of Higher. The North Dakota Supreme Court ruled against the North Dakota Board of Higher Education.
ND Courts ---- The Justices signing this majority opinion would exercise this Court's discretionary original jurisdiction and decide now the constitutionality of the legislative enactment requiring the University of North Dakota ("UND") to use the "Fighting Sioux" nickname and logo. We conclude the question of the constitutional authority of the Board of Higher Education, in contrast to the constitutional authority of the legislature, is properly before this Court and is ready to be decided. Those Justices writing separately, however, conclude the issue is not properly before this Court at this time, is not ready to be decided and they will not decide the issue at this time. The necessary number of Justices required to decide the merits is lacking and for this reason we must deny the application of the State Board of Higher Education.
This ruling by the North Dakota Supreme Court puts UND in a precarious situation with the Big Sky Conference. Of course this is a little breathing room after Montana put themselves in the cross hairs with their on campus scandal where they fired the Athletic Director and the head football coach.

Edit: Justice Carol Ronning Kapsner  ruled that there is no matter of urgency at this time, if there was the State Board of Higher Education would have filed in court last year after the Fighting Sioux nickname law was passed in March of 2011.
[¶37] It is clear that the constitutionality of N.D.C.C. § 15-10-46, the statute asserted to be a problem, is not a matter of urgency. If it were so, the Board would have challenged its constitutionality, as it could have done, immediately upon its signature by the Governor on March 15, 2011, one year ago, or any time thereafter. The fact that it did not do so until now indicates this is not a matter of urgency.

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Wednesday, February 08, 2012

Fighting Sioux nickname supporters file petitions with 17,000 signatures

University of North Dakota Fighting Sioux athl...Image via Wikipedia
Just when you think that the nickname is dead and gone, there is another event that resurrects it and brings back the Fighting Sioux nickname.

This is going to be interesting going forward, and maybe not in a good way. I am not sure anyone knows what will happen and there will be some anxiety as we wait to see what happens this week and in the future. Contrary to what some say about the Big Sky Conference, there is a very real possibility that UND’s membership could be in jeopardy.

That threat is very real and not something to be taken lightly, I don’t care what some have gleaned out of the letters that they received through the freedom of information act. Most of us know that the NCAA isn’t going to take this laying down and they are going to be behind the scenes pulling strings. You can count on it. The NCAA is an out of control organization. But we have to play by their rules if we want to be in Division I sports. Do I like it not one bit.

Chuck Haga, Grand Forks Herald --- After a last, celebratory campaign for signatures at a Bismarck Century-Bismarck High hockey game and from an RV parked outside the Capitol, Fighting Sioux nickname supporters delivered petitions to the secretary of state’s office Tuesday night to force a statewide vote on the long-running and controversial issue.

Members of the sponsoring committee, including members of the Spirit Lake and Standing Rock Sioux tribes, delivered 604 petitions they said contained about 17,000 signatures, well more than the 13,452 required to make the June 12 primary election ballot.

“It’s still a long way to go, but I’m really pleased today,” said Reed Soderstrom, the Minot attorney who has helped to lead the petition drive, as he was about to enter the Capitol about 10 p.m.

Like I said before, I love the Fighting Sioux nickname and I think it’s "the best" logo in all of college sports and nothing will ever be able to replace it. I also find it interesting that the NCAA is telling UND that the Fighting Sioux nickname is hostile and abusive and then you see two Native Americans representatives from the two tribes handing in petitions last night at the dead line. What does that tell you?

UND President Robert O. Kelley has said that UND will again be called the Fighting Sioux.
Kelley said the action was taken “in keeping with state law” and direction from Shaft.

“I want to reaffirm our respect for the laws of the state and the processes guaranteed under the North Dakota Constitution,” Kelley said.

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Wednesday, September 14, 2011

ND Attorney General Seeking Dismissal of UND Students' Nickname Lawsuit

University of North Dakota Fighting Sioux athl...Image via WikipediaHere is the latest news involving the Fighting Sioux nickname. I have to agree there was no reason for this lawsuit to be filed, I also think it would be a long shot to prove that these 8 students had their 14 amendment rights violated.
GRAND FORKS (WDAZ-TV) - North Dakota Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem's office has filed a motion asking the Federal Court to dismiss a suit by eight current and former UND students over the Fighting Sioux nickname and logo.

The students allege the state law requiring the school to keep the nickname violates the state constitution and reverses a court-ordered settlement between UND and the NCAA that retired the logo.

In the motion to dismiss, the Attorney General's office says the settlement with the NCAA does not require the nickname and logo to be retired, but only specifies the penalties that will ensue if the nickname were to remain.
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Thursday, August 11, 2011

Al Carlson on the law suit...

North Dakota Fighting Sioux men's ice hockeyImage via Wikipedia
This article by ESPN is worth a read if you haven't seen it. As mentioned earlier, no one has a clue on who is paying for this law suit, it's hardly unlikely the students mention are paying for this lawsuit. It would be nice to have some transparency and know who is footing the bill on this lawsuit. I am sure that information will come out in the near future.
ESPN.COM --- Some state leaders and UND President Robert Kelley are scheduled to meet with NCAA executives Friday in Indianapolis. Republican House Majority Leader Al Carlson, of Fargo, questioned the timing of the lawsuit and said it represents a handful of people with out-of-state interests.

"You've got a New York attorney. It was nice of them to keep it local," Carlson said. "We understand why it was done. It's a small group. My job is to represent the majority of North Dakotans.

"I think there has been a lot of discussion already and tomorrow we are going to make the case why we think the Fighting Sioux nickname should be retained," he said of Friday's meeting.

Fredericks said the timing of the lawsuit is related to the fact that the settlement agreement dictated that the nickname be officially retired Monday, and not because of the meeting with NCAA officials.

"The meeting that is happening on Friday is because of the Monday deadline," she said.

The truth shall set you free…

North Dakota Fighting Sioux men's ice hockeyImage via Wikipedia
This little nugget was found on Dustin Monke's blog, the Sports Editor of The Dickinson Press, I asked the question earlier today; “who is paying for this lawsuit?” There is a bigger entity out there than eight former students driving this lawsuit. That is the question people should be asking is, who is driving this lawsuit, and why now?

I highly doubt that these eight students in question have the money to retain a high priced lawyer of Sanford Dumain's stature, and now we find out that they also have a P.R. firm as well, someone else is footing the bill.

Six UND Indian students file federal lawsuit over Fighting Sioux nickname

North Dakota Fighting Sioux men's ice hockeyImage via WikipediaIn reading the newspaper articles I have gleaned that six students from the University of North Dakota of Native American decent that aren't Sioux (Nakota, Lakota, Dakota), have filed a law suit in Federal Court against Gov. Jack Dalrymple, Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem, the state of North Dakota, the North Dakota state Board of Higher Education and the University of North Dakota.

The Students' attorney in question is Sanford Dumain of the New York law firm Milberg LLP. Like Rob Port the first question that I asked myself is; who is paying for this lawsuit? That's the bigger question that people should be asking. I highly doubt that these six students have the money to retain a lawyer of Sanford Dumain's stature, someone is footing the bill.

According the the Bismarck Tribune the Students are claiming that the new law to retain the Fighting Sioux nickname violates their 14th Amendment. Which will probably be hard to prove and it will be interesting to see if the group even has standing to sue. What are they going to claim that they are being deprived of life, liberty and or property?
The complaint alleges the legislation violates the state Constitution, because the Board of Higher Education is supposed to make such decisions rather than the Legislature, and violates a court-ordered settlement directing the name be changed which was reached by the NCAA, the state and the Board of Higher Education. The students also allege the new law violates their 14th Amendment rights in that the name and logo are harmful and disparaging to Native Americans.
Links to the paper work filed (Civil Cover Sheet) and (Complaint and Jury Trial Demand)

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Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Governor to lead UND nickname delegation to NCAA July 25

Well everyone in their brother is going to this meeting with the NCAA in Indianapolis, Indiana except representatives from the two North Dakota tribes (Standing Rock and Spirit Lake). This slight doesn’t make any sense to me what-so-ever.

So if you going to the NCAA main office in Indianapolis, Indiana to make the case for the University of North Dakota to retain the Fighting Sioux nickname because you don’t think it’s hostile and abusive, wouldn’t you include a few of the people of Native American decent (just to name a few, Archie D. Fool Bear, Eunice Davidson) that broke their backs trying to get their respective tribes to vote on the Fighting Sioux nickname?
Chuck Haga, Grand Forks Herald --- Gov. Jack Dalrymple will lead a North Dakota delegation July 25 to Indianapolis to meet with leaders of the NCAA, hoping to persuade the athletics association to alter its stance regarding UND and the Fighting Sioux nickname.

“Everybody is in,” said Grant Shaft, who as president of the State Board of Higher Education will join Dalrymple, Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem, House Majority Leader Al Carlson, R-Fargo, and others at the long-anticipated face-to-face meeting.

The group also will include Senate Majority Leader Bob Stenehjem, R-Bismarck, UND President Robert Kelley and Athletic Director Brian Faison, North Dakota University System Chancellor William Goetz and Jody Hodgson, general manager of the Ralph Engelstad Arena.

“The governor will be the leader of the contingent,” Shaft said, “and he and Carlson will be the primary players at the table. The rest of us will be a supporting cast, there if we’re needed to answer questions.”

Kelley’s staff had worked with the NCAA in recent weeks to get possible dates for the meeting, which from the association’s side likely will involve President Mark Emmert and Vice President Bernard Franklin.

They told Kelley they’d be available for a sit-down session July 22 or 25. Shaft took those dates to Dalrymple and the others, and the 25th, a Monday, fit their calendars better.

State leaders had tried to arrange a meeting in Bismarck shortly after the legislative session ended, but the NCAA leaders balked, citing the apparent conflict between the Legislature and the State Board, which had directed UND to drop the name and logo.
The Spirit Lake Tribe in Devils Lake approved the use of the Fighting Sioux nickname, the Standing Rock Tribal Council failed to let their members vote on the issues, probably fearing that the vote at Standing Rock would have shaken out the same way. Something doesn’t smell right here… Anyone want to bet on whether the anti-nickname crowd will have their representatives present at this meeting as well?
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