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Minot man sentenced for terrorizing

David Diaz Jr., 39, Minot, was sentenced on Tuesday to 18 months in prison on a Class C felony terrorizing charge for calling in a bomb/assassination threat from his jail cell at the Ward County Jail that resulted in the evacuation of the Ward County Courthouse and the Ward County Administration Building on April 7.

Northwest District Court Judge Josh Rustad, who was specially appointed to hear the case, also gave credit for the 125 days Diaz spent in jail and ordered Diaz to pay $125 in court costs.

According to court documents, Diaz used his “texter” to make two two-minute calls to the Ward County State’s Attorney’s Office on April 7 and made threats to judges and state’s attorneys. Most calls from the jail are recorded but this call was private. Surveillance video of the cell block showed Diaz alone in his cell at the time of the call. After the call was placed, Diaz is seen on video looking at a cell window and waving his sweater at the window from which people could be seen leaving the buildings after the evacuation order was given.

Diaz was still looking out the window when Lt. Dale Clemens came to tell him he was under arrest for terrorizing. According to Clemens’ affidavit, Diaz said something along the lines of “It’s a sacrifice to kill people,” and, when Clemens asked what he meant, Diaz said he had everyone’s addresses and “checkmate.”

Diaz was in custody at the jail in April on unrelated charges. He pleaded guilty in June to Class C felony breaking into a motor vehicle and Class C felony criminal trespass and was sentenced to five years in prison, all suspended but 136 days of time served, and two years of supervised probation.

He was sentenced to 360 days in jail, all suspended but one day, and 18 months of supervised probation for Class A misdemeanor criminal mischief. Diaz damaged the screens on three TVs at the jail by throwing pencil sharpeners at them on April 7, April 8, and April 9. The TVs were valued at a combined total of $432.

He has also been charged with a Class B misdemeanor for allegedly tampering with, disabling, or falsely sounding a fire alarm on Feb. 11. According to court records, police had received a report that Diaz was walking up and down the hallway at a southeast Minot apartment complex, banging on doors while holding a hammer, and had pulled a fire alarm on the floor. Firefighters responded but there was no fire or any reason for Diaz to have pulled the fire alarm.

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