Wahpeton man has felony B charge dismissed, gets probation

Matthew Christenson

A Wahpeton man has been sentenced to two years supervised probation after amending his pleas to multiple charges in Wahpeton and Richland County, North Dakota.

Matthew Maurice Christenson, 32, received judgement Monday, Sept. 20 in Richland County District Court. On that day, Christenson:

• amended a plea for one charge of unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia, a class A misdemeanor-level charge, to guilty

• had one charge of child endangerment, a class C felony-level charge, dismissed

• had one charge of methamphetamine possession with intent to manufacture or deliver, a class B felony-level charge, dismissed

• amended a plea for a second charge of child endangerment to guilty; the charged was deemed a misdemeanor

• amended a plea for a second charge of unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia to guilty

• amended a plea for a charge of unlawful possession of marijuana paraphernalia, an infraction-level charge, to guilty

Records state that Christenson was ordered to undergo a chemical dependency evaluation before Nov. 20, 2021. In addition to the two years supervised probation, effective Sept. 20, 2021, Christenson was given credit for 105 days served in the Richland County Jail, Wahpeton. A total of $850 in fees were waived, although a $25 fee was upheld. Bond was exonerated.

“Of the $5,910 seized from the defendant, $3,000 (is) to be forfeited to (the Southeast Multi-County Agency (SEMCA) drug task force) and the balance of $2,910 will be returned to the defendant,” records state.

Christenson was represented by attorney Samuel Johnson. Richland County Assistant State’s Attorney Casey Moen represented the state of North Dakota. Judge Bradley Cruff presided.

Christenson and Breezy Mae Hemmah, 39, Breckenridge, Minnesota, were both charged in February 2021 for January incidents in Richland County and Wahpeton. SEMCA agents executed search warrants on Jan. 8 at two hotels. Items found included methamphetamine smoking devices, grams of methamphetamine, a digital scale with white residue and a cigarette pack with two glass meth pipes, Daily News previously reported.

Hemmah, represented by attorney Jason Butts, faced the same six charges as Christenson. On Aug. 23, she amended her pleas to four of the charges and had the methamphetamine possession and one of the child endangerment charges dismissed. The other endangerment charge was also deemed misdemeanor-level.

Hemmah was sentenced to two years supervised probation and 90 days in the Richland County Jail (with credit for 80 days served), and ordered to undergo a chemical dependency evaluation and complete recommended treatment.

A search of North Dakota court records did not reveal new information on Ricky Groves II, charged in relation to the incident at the Richland County hotel.

North Dakota’s maximum penalty for an infraction is $1,000, followed by 360 days imprisonment, a $3,000 fine, or both, for a class A misdemeanor. The maximum penalty for a class C felony is five years imprisonment, a $10,000 fine, or both, followed by 10 years imprisonment, a $20,000 fine, or both, for a class B felony.

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