Krystan Standingbear sentenced to time served, probation for child neglect

Krystan Faye Standingbear, 24, was sentenced on Thursday to 360 days in jail, all suspended but the 43 days she has already served, and three years of supervised probation for fleeing in a stolen car while carrying her baby son in sub-zero temperatures on Jan. 14 in Minot.

Standingbear pleaded guilty to Class C felony child neglect before Judge Doug Mattson. The state agreed to dismiss a Class C felony theft charge against her under the terms of a plea deal.

Judge Mattson also ordered Standingbear to pay $700 in court costs. If she successfully completes probation, the Class C felony will be reduced to a misdemeanor.

According to court records, Nathan Lee Wallette, 31, stole a 2008 Pontiac G6 from downtown Minot. He picked up Standingbear. The car drove into a dead end at 41st Street SE and Wallette and Standingbear, who was carrying her son, ran away from the vehicle. Standingbear went to a neighboring house and said she had had a fight with her boyfriend. The occupant of the house called police. Wallette was caught and detained near the intersection of 38th Street SE and 10th Avenue SE after having gone into a neighboring garage a few minutes before while fleeing from police. He told police he allegedly stole the car because it was cold out and he didn’t have anywhere else to go. He and Standingbear had intended to drive to Dunseith.

Police had asserted that the child was not dressed appropriately for the weather, which was 8 degrees below zero, with a windchill of 27 degrees below zero, at the time. Standingbear told Judge Mattson on Thursday that she was not wearing a coat that day, but her baby son was wearing shoes and she had wrapped him up in two blankets. Standingbear and her baby were outside for about 13 minutes in the subzero temperatures.

“I just want to get back to my son,” Standingbear told the judge on Thursday. She cried when she pleaded guilty to the charge and told the judge she has taken 10 hours of parenting classes while she has been incarcerated at the Ward County Jail. Standingbear told the judge she lives in Fargo and has three other children in addition to the baby.

Wallette, Dunseith, who is not the baby’s father, is charged in district court in Minot with Class C felony theft of property in connection with the stolen car.

A pretrial conference in his case is scheduled for April 29 before Mattson.