Date: October 3, 2016
Agency: Morton County Sheriff's Department
Contact: Morton County PIO (701) 426-1587
Mandan, N.D. - Morton County filed Class C Felony charges against Mason Redwing for terrorizing and reckless endangerment. The criminal complaint accuses Redwing of charging at a police line on horseback, endangering the lives of law enforcement putting law enforcement officers in fear for their safety.
On September 28th, 2016, protesters were gathered on private property near Highway 6, in Morton County. Law enforcement formed a line. An officer was assigned specifically to monitor the activities of the horse riders as riders had used their mounts to charge the police line in the past. Redwing spurred his horse and galloped directly at the police line. Redwing was within twenty feet of the police line when the officer raised his shotgun, loaded with bean-bag rounds, and pointed it at Redwing with the intention of stopping the horse from hitting him. The officer shouted for Redwing to get back with the horse. Redwing immediately pulled up and veered off to his right. A picture is circulating on social media regarding the incident is not an accurate depiction of the event with law enforcement.
The officer did not discharge the weapon during the incident, nor did he raise his weapon again. The officer’s gun was loaded with “bean-bag rounds”. Pictures illustrating bean-bag rounds are included in this release. The bean-bag rounds are a form of less-lethal ammunition commonly used by law enforcement.
According to the affidavit filed in Morton County, Redwing’s actions caused the officer to be in fear for his safety as well as the safety of officers manning the line in front of the protesters. The officer said Redwing clearly had a reckless disregard of the risk of causing terror and disruption when he escalated an already tense situation with the charge of his horse causing officers to fear serious bodily injury.
A warrant has been issued for the arrest of 19 yr. old Redwing of Fort Thompson, South Dakota on the Terrorizing and Reckless Endangerment charges. A warrant also exists for Redwing for criminal trespass from a protest activity on September 3, 2016.
To date, law enforcement have arrested 95 individuals for illegal protest activities. Of those arrested, 81 individuals are from 25 different states and two are from Canada; 14 individuals are from North Dakota.