Port: Here’s a scary and deeply unsatisfying column about North Dakota’s growing crime problem


MINOT, N.D. — In the wee hours of Feb. 3, 2023, law enforcement officers in my community responded to a shooting at a local bar called the Dakota Lounge. Two people were injured, and a man was arrested on charges of aggravated assault, terrorizing, and unlawful firearm possession.

More recently, on May 14, at the Original Nightclub, which is also in Minot, a man was shot and killed. The suspect has been arrested and charged with manslaughter and reckless endangerment.

Remarkably, one guy was at both of these terrible incidents. Michael Davis, who recently gave an interview to my friend Joe Skurzewski, a reporter at KMOT TV in Minot, was one of those injured in the shooting at the Dakota Lounge, and he was for the deadly shooting at the Original.

He was a bystander, each time, he told Skurzewski. Just out with some friends to have a good time. “We need to get on top of this,” he said. “It’s the second shooting in … three months?”

He’s right. North Dakota has a problem with rising levels of violent crime. We do need to get on top of it.

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