City leaders still in limbo on external review of deadly Fargo Police shooting

Human Rights Commission
Human Rights Commission(KVLY)
Published: Nov. 17, 2022 at 6:15 PM CST
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FARGO, N.D. (Valley News Live) - A decision has yet again been delayed in the public’s search for accountability and truth in a July 8th fatal shooting of a man by a Fargo Police officer.

For months, members of the Police Advisory and Oversight Board as well as the Human Rights Commission have been pushing for an external investigation to be done on the shooting that left 28-year-old Shane Netterville dead.

A black eye is what members of the Human Rights Commission says the shooting has the potential to be for the city if it continues to go unresolved.

“I agree that a good relationship between the police department and the community it serves is essential. When incidents occur that threaten to damage that trust, we need to look at every way possible to rectify,” commissioner Barry Nelson said.

Nelson says North Dakota Attorney General Drew Wrigley’s findings of the shooting by FPD officer Adam O’Brien leaves too many questions.

“I don’t think we can just say that we’re done,” Nelson said.

Both the Human Rights Commission and Police Oversight Board have stated they want the Department of Justice to step in and review the case, but a letter has yet to be sent to make that request. Questions remain on which board has the authority to send the letter.

“Why are we still going back and forth on this case? What is going on? I am really confused and I would like some honesty in this,” Commissioner Hamida Dakane said.

Commissioner Jacqueline Dotzenrod says a letter has already been drafted and approved by the commission, and is just waiting on the green light.

City of Fargo Attorney Nancy Morris urged the board to look further into if there is a “pattern in practice of behavior” with the Fargo Police Department that would warrant an investigation from the DOJ.

“The U.S. Attorney and Department of Justice, the FBI is aware of the police-involved shootings. They do have other investigations ongoing and they can’t speak to ongoing investigations. I’m not saying these matters are under investigation,” Morris said.

The topic of an independent review is expected to be re-vistited at the police advisory and oversight board meeting on december 8 at 5 p.m.