by Timothy Charles Holmseth on December 31, 2016, 10:51 P.M. CST
The truth about a police shooting in North Dakota is trickling out.
The 911 call made by David James Elliott the night he was shot by UND campus police officer Jerad Braaten, reveals he was scared for his life when he inexplicably refused to pull over for the mere traffic violation of running a stop sign in Grand Forks.
The real bombshell is the identity of the person Elliott thought was going to hurt him.
Elliott feared Walsh County Sheriff Lauren Wild (retired) was following him and was going to harm him.
And – evidence shows Wild knew the shooter, Braaten, and took an interest in the event at some level.
During an interview with the North Dakota Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI), Jennifer Elliott, the wife of David Elliott, along with her mother Margaret Dolan, said Wild knew Jerad Braaten and claimed he (Braaten) had once worked for the Grafton Police Department.
BCI AGENT SCOTT KRAFT: Can I ask where you got that information?”
JENNIFER ELLIOT: Loren Wild.
MARGARET DOLAN: Loren Wild.
“He worked at Grafton – that’s what Lauren Wild was saying – that he was asked to leave. That’s what we were hearing from Lauren Wild that he worked for the Grafton police – he was let go – he was asked to leave,” Jennifer Elliott said.
Write Into Action contacted Grafton Police Chief Anthony Dumas and inquired about Wild’s claims. “Jerad Braaten has never had any affiliation with the Grafton Police Department. He was never employed here, therefore, couldn’t have been asked to resign. Retired Sheriff Lauren Wild was mistaken when he commented on this,” Chief Dumas said.
During the BCI interview with Jennifer Elliott, Special Agent Michael Ness talked about David Elliott’s fear of Wild on the night of the pursuit and shooting.
“He actually sees the State Trooper from up there and he mistakenly thinks its Lauren Wild from Walsh County. Has he had any dealings with Lauren?” Ness asked.
“No, but, were from Grafton. Grafton’s my home town. So, Lauren Wild would be a good friend to my mom’s brothers. Yeah, so we know him very well,” Jennifer Elliott said.
The mysterious statements by Wild about Braaten are only the beginning of his strange involvement in the David Elliott shooting. The relevance created by the close relationship between David Elliott’s family, Wild, and Braaten, may contribute to the ultra secrecy and media blackout in the case.
Wild made headlines in 2010 when he fired his opponent, Walsh County Deputy Ron Nord, immediately after the election, which resulted in a recall election and a federal lawsuit.
However, by 2015 Wild was out of the picture. On January 10, 2015, the Grand Forks Herald reported Walsh County had a new sheriff and that Lauren Wild had retired.
On December 30, 2016, Write Into Action obtained audio of the 911 call made by David Elliott on February 27, 2015 – the night he was shot.
According to North Dakota Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem’s office, some of the call has been redacted pursuant to North Dakota statute 44-04-18.7 – – – Criminal intelligence information and criminal investigative information.
Write Into Action confirmed the actual length of the original 911 call in June, 2015. “The call is 107 minutes long,” said Debbie Hoverson, Grand Forks 911. However, the file obtained this week from the Office of the North Dakota Attorney General is approximately 102 minutes in length.
Despite the missing (redacted) five minutes, explosive facts have emerged that involve the Grand Forks Police Department, (retired) Sheriff Lauren Wild, Altru, thousands of pills, and David Elliott’s extreme fear he was going to be harmed by ‘Lauren Wild’.
During the 911 call, the PSAP operator asked David Elliott if he would speak to a Grand Forks police officer named Matthew Bullinger.
David Elliott’s immediate response to hearing Bullinger’s name is noteworthy.
911 OPERATOR: I have officers at your house right now but I have one here that can speak with you. Is that okay? Just for a couple of minutes. His name is Officer Bullinger.
DAVID ELLIOTT: I’ve talked to him before.
“I’m at the dispatch center because, you know, since were on the 911 call we can’t transfer you through to a cell phone so I had to come here to talk to you,” Bullinger said.
As Bullinger and David Elliott, who seem to be familiar with each other, are speaking, David Elliott begins talking about Wild after seeing a vehicle go by him on I-29.
“Oh now he’s stopping. Now he’s turning around. Walsh County Sheriff’s Department -Lauren,” David Elliott said.
David Elliott’s anxiety over Wild is absolutely off the charts.
“I’ve dealt with a lot police in my time. I’ve never met such a prick in my life. That guy is corrupt! I mean I’m not even kidding you – he is. He’s a corrupt cop. That’s for somebody else to judge and find out. But he’s got away with it for years. I hate him so much I feel like putting it to the floor and seeing what that son-of-a-bitch really has,” David Elliott told Bullinger.
David Elliott’s fear and hatred of Wild is in stark contrast to that of his wife and mother-in-law who consider Wild a friend of their family.
“My whole life I’ve been beat to shit out of by cops. And Lauren has the traits and aspects and everything of the same shit,” David Elliott said.
As Bullinger continues to ask David Elliott to stop for paramedics; David Elliott continues to refer to “Lauren Wild”.
“I’m sorry but I don’t trust that cop Lauren. It’s his vehicle; I know his vehicle; he’s a fucking asshole; the most crookedest cop,” David Elliott said.
As Bullinger and David Elliott continue to talk, David Elliott continues to speak very personally about Wild and then refers to the “squad”.
“I’m watching frickin Lauren climbing up on my ass. I know it’s him. I guarantee it’s him. I tell you he’s the only one on the whole squad that has a brand new SUV,” David Elliott said.
David Elliott’s extensive familiarity with Wild is very compelling. He refers to “the squad” which is odd considering he (David Elliott) has no meaningful criminal history or any obvious involvement with law enforcement (except that he stated he knew Bullinger).
GFPD MATTHEW BULLINGER: Can I ask you? The paramedics are like three miles from you right now. So would you mind just pulling over and stopping so they can get – you know, they’re on the interstate but they’re going north – so they can turn around and get on the right side there – and get out and talk to you.
DAVID ELLIOTT: Not with Lauren.
GFPD MATTHEW BULLINGER: Yeah, well, I’ll tell Lauren to stay in his car. Stay back, you know. It will just be you and the paramedics if that’s alright.
DAVID ELLIOTT: I don’t only want him to back up – I want him to turn around and leave.
David Elliott’s expressed fears soon turned to his fear of guns. “I hate guns. I mean I hate guns – I hate guns – I hate guns – as all they frickin do is kill people – it’s all they do,” David Elliott said.
Bullinger continued to ask David Elliott to pull over, which began to agitate him. “You don’t understand! I don’t like Lauren. He’s a prick,” David Elliott said.
“I have a big fear of PTSD of guns – I went to more funerals than I did graduations in my high school, okay?” David Elliott said.
“You don’t know. I’m so deadly afraid of cops. If its Lauren I’m going to freak out,” David Elliott said.
During the BCI interview with Jennifer Elliott and Dolan, Special Agent Ness makes an utterly astonishing statement. “Lauren’s probably the nicest guy you’ll ever meet,” Ness said.
Write Into Action continues to investigate this case which involves thousands of pills that David Elliott obtained from Altru Hospital, as well as illegally edited police-cam videos.
In the summer of 2016 David Elliott contacted Write Into Action and said Braaten attempted to shoot him minutes before the actual shooting, while atop the Columbia Road Bridge; but Braaten’s gun jammed.
Braaten’s dash-cam was never entered into evidence by the BCI, and his body-cam, which captured no useful video because it was placed on his shirt wrong, was found hidden underneath his UND squad car after the shooting.
GFPD Chief Mark Nelson later hired Braaten to the GFPD, despite his (Braaten) being reprimanded in writing for his conduct with his cams.
Nelson also set forth a plan destroy all the video of the shooting by issuing a ‘Special Order’ that changed the retention dates of the police-cam evidence after Write Into Action began investigating.
Write Into Action continues to analyze the 911 call.
For those concerned about the public safety crisis created by drugs in the region, you are encouraged to read my articles about the death (murder) of Caitlin Jenna Erickson – the young mother that died mysteriously the same night (same time window) David Elliott was pursued and shot.
Believe me – there’s more to come – that I will tell you.
Criminal intelligence information” means information with respect to an identifiable person or group of persons collected by a criminal justice agency in an effort to anticipate, prevent, or monitor possible criminal activity. Criminal intelligence information must be considered “active” as long as it is related to intelligence gathering conducted with a reasonable good-faith belief it will lead to detection of ongoing or reasonably anticipated criminal activities. Criminal intelligence information also includes training materials and information obtained by a criminal justice agency regarding prospective criminal activities which impact officer safety until the information is publicly disclosed.