Fargo Police Chief David Todd featured in NYT Opinion Video on Gun Rights and Domestic Violence

FARGO – Fargo Police Chief David Todd has entered the gun debate on the national stage.

In a video on The New York Times’ website and Facebook page, Todd shares his views on gun rights and gun control, and discusses the death of officer Jason Moszer. “Even as a strong supporter of the Second Amendment, I have a red line. Individuals with violent records like domestic violence should never be allowed to own a gun,” Todd says in the video.

Interspersed with Todd providing his views, The New York Times video plays images and police radio recordings from the night officer Moszer was shot after Moszer and other officers responded to a domestic violence call.

“My biggest fear is losing one of my police officers,” Todd said in the video.

“Statistically, these (domestic violence calls) are the most deadly calls we get, and the trend is rising,” he added. Todd states in the video that the man who shot Moszer was a convicted felon with a history of domestic violence and who was able to legally own a gun because 10 years had passed since his release from prison.

“It does not have to be this way,” Todd said. “Domestic abusers should not be allowed to have guns.”

According to Todd, federal laws have loopholes when it comes to domestic abusers and guns and he said only 17 states require anyone with a domestic violence restraining order to turn in their firearms. On the other hand, in 2017, eight governors from both parties ignored pressure from the gun lobby and closed some loopholes, Todd said in the video.

“I understand criminals will always find ways to hurt people, but we can still take reasonable steps to prevent deadly acts by people who already have a violent record with firearms,” Todd said.

“We all want fewer people to die from domestic violence and we want our police officers to go home at the end of their shift to be with their families,” he added.

In an interview with WDAY, Todd said he agreed to record the video provided that it was done carefully. “I was not interested in being used as a pawn in a political agenda, so we worked through what my concerns were and I wanted it to be a common-sense message,” Todd said in the interview.

The New York Times contacted Todd, knowing the 2016 shooting death of officer Moszer was still fresh in the minds of people in the community.

“Gun ownership is a part of life here and that is a right we need to preserve, but there are common-sense things we need to look at when we have people convicted of violent crimes or domestic violence that perhaps they lose the right to own that gun,” Todd said in the video.

Millions of New York Times readers saw Todd’s video, and many seemed to agree with his statement.

“Watching comments, certainly more cynical outside our region, but the majority agree with what I am saying,” he told WDAY.

To view the video, click here.

ND SAVIN System to be Renovated

Original article by Daniela Hurtado (KFYR-TV) |
BISMARCK, N.D. – Most crime victims want to know the status of the case against the accused. North Dakota’s statewide automated victim information and notification system or “SAVIN” provides that kind of information.

SAVIN has seen updates in the last three months because of Marsy’s law, which is an expanded list of rights for victims approved by lawmakers last year. As a result of Marsy’s law being approved changes to SAVIN have to be made to better notify victims.

“One of the good things unarguably is that we would be able to provide a lot more information about what’s happened with court cases and with defendents, to give to people who are victims, or even people who are just be interested in the status of certain criminal cases,” said Wayne Stenehjem, North Dakota Attorney General.

The three year long renovation to the system will cost more than $800,000, two thirds of which will come from the state’s general fund and the other part from counties and cities.

“I believe it will be a great benefit to the Bismarck City Attorney’s office and provide us with an updated method of providing notification to victims of crimes,” said Jason Hammes, Bismarck Assistant City Attorney

“We now have completed the upgrade for the municipal courts. We’re rolling that out right now. So, that is something from the municipal courts all the Marsy’s Law notices can be sent automatically as soon as all of the cities have signed up for it,” said Stenehjem.

Other things included in the upgrade are juvenile court, sentencing, pardon board and some jail transfer notifications. The Attorney General says this is a long process but with three months in, the kick off of the update is marching along nicely.