State wants Brent Castleman held without bond after DUI, fictitious plates arrest

The Ward County State’s Attorney’s Office has filed to revoke a pretrial release agreement for Brent Castleman, who is facing multiple child abuse and stalking charges in district court in Minot, and want him held without bond until his cases have been resolved.

According to court documents filed with the court, Castleman, 52, was arrested on Feb. 19 for driving while intoxicated, a Class B misdemeanor, and driving with fictitious plates, a Class B misdemeanor. He is facing those charges in Minot Municipal Court.

Ward County Assistant State’s Attorney Christopher Nelson writes in his motion that Castleman has violated the terms of his pre-trial release by excessive use of alcohol, the DUI arrest and driving a vehicle with fictitious plates. Castleman has been out on $50,000 bond.

According to the court affidavit, Castleman was seen driving a green Toyota Highlander early Wednesday which had license plates on it that are registered to a Dodge Ram.

Minot Police Officer Kevin Cory stopped Castleman in the Walmart parking lot at 12:46 a.m. Wednesday. As he was handcuffing Castleman, Cory smelled alcohol on Castleman’s breath and noted that Castleman had bloodshot, watery eyes. Castleman said he wanted to do the field sobriety tests in the parking lot and Cory said it was too cold and he would be taking him to the Minot Police Department to do the tests there.

Cory wrote that Castleman was argumentative and had to be told several times to take a seat in the patrol vehicle. Cory took the license plates off Castleman’s vehicle and took them into evidence and made sure the vehicle was secured.

Castleman told Cory there must have been a clerical error at the DMV involving the license plates. The license plates that were on his vehicle came back as registered to a vehicle belonging to a company that is owned by Castleman’s parents. Castleman told Cory that the registered owner must have put the wrong license plates on the vehicle. Cory told him he was responsible for the vehicle as he was driving it. Castleman continued questioning Cory on the way back to the police station regarding the reason for the traffic stop. Castleman also told Cory that he wanted to talk to his attorney before speaking to police. Castleman was allowed to call his attorney at the police station and then agreed to submit to the field sobriety tests, which indicated he had some level of impairment. A breath alcohol content test came back at 0.047, according to the affidavit. That reading is still under the legal limit of 0.08. Cory wrote in the affidavit that, in his judgment, Castleman was “possibly under the influence of something other than alcohol” because “Castleman was “confrontational, unable to sit still, appeared to have uncontrollable hand/leg movements, and was unable to relax.”

Cory also wrote in a separate affidavit that it is not uncommon for a defendant to use fictitious license plates to try to get around a no contact order. Castleman has been ordered to have no contact with a woman and four children who are alleged to be victims in his stalking and child abuse cases. Castleman is alleged to have physically or emotionally abused the children and to have physically assaulted their mother in front of them.

Castleman has multiple, separate cases pending against him in court.

He is charged with Class A misdemeanor stalking, a charge dating back to May 2019. That case is before Judge Doug Mattson and a status conference in the case is set for Friday.

In another case, he is charged with one Class B felony count of child abuse and five Class C felony counts of child abuse. That case is set before Northeast District Court Judge Michael Hurly, who was appointed after judges in the North Central District Court recused themselves from hearing cases against Castleman.

In another case, Castleman is charged with Class A misdemeanor disobedience of a judicial order, in a case dating back to July 2019. In another case, Castleman is charged with Class A misdemeanor stalking and three counts of Class A misdemeanor disobedience of a judicial order, all dating back to Oct. 15. In yet another case, he has been charged with five counts of Class A misdemeanor disobedience of a judicial order and one count of Class A misdemeanor stalking, dating back to Dec. 15. All of these cases have also been assigned to Hurly. A hearing on one of the cases is scheduled for March 4 before Hurly.

According to court documents, Castleman’s lawyer, Kyle Craig, has filed several motions in the cases that he wants Hurly to consider. Craig is arguing that the child abuse charges against Castleman should be dismissed because the state violated Castleman’s right to a speedy trial.

The state had previously filed child abuse charges against Castleman that were ultimately dismissed at the request of the state because a prosecutor said more information was needed to successfully prosecute the case. Judge Doug Mattson had dismissed that case and also ordered that the prosecution would first have to seek court permission before it refiled the charges. The state later refiled new child abuse charges against Castleman and that case was ultimately one of those assigned to Hurly. Craig writes the state had the charges dismissed to circumvent Castleman’s right to a speedy trial and filing the new charges amount to harassment. Craig asserts that Castleman has been negatively impacted due to the pending legal charges and negative publicity. Castleman’s contact with the children has also been heavily restricted or denied while the charges are pending. Craig also wants the state’s demand for a change of judge from Mattson to another judge in one of the cases to be reviewed.

In his response to Craig’s motion to dismiss the child abuse charges, Ward County Assistant State’s Attorney Christopher Nelson writes that many of Craig’s claims are frivolous, that Mattson did not have the authority to order the state to get permission before it re-filed the case against Castleman and Castleman never asked for a speedy trial.

Those are all matters that will be considered by Hurly.