WDAY: The News Leader

Published October 14, 2011, 09:55 PM

More Charges Filed Against Family in Ongoing Standoff Near Lakota, ND

LAKOTA, ND (WDAZ-TV) - More charges have been filed against five members of a family involved in a nearly four month-long standoff south of Lakota.

By: Rick Abbott, WDAZ

LAKOTA, ND (WDAZ-TV) - More charges have been filed against five members of a family involved in a nearly four month-long standoff south of Lakota.

Arrest warrants were issued Friday for Rodney Brossart and his four adult children, Abby, Thomas, Alex and Jacob.

Bench or arrest warrants were previously issued for all five.

According to the North Dakota courts website, the five were charged with failure to appear after release or bail jumping, a Class C felony. The charges were posted on Thursday.

The charge of failure to appear after release is made after a subject is released upon the condition that they will return to court or before a judicial officer as required.

Nelson County Sheriff Kelly Janke says the department has been trying to resolve the situation with communication through Rodney Brossart's widowed mother.

She has also apparently been ferrying in food from Lakota to the family.

Janke says the department is working with a team of experts on the local, state and federal levels to try to resolve the standoff peacefully.

"We are working with teams of experts in this type of matter and we're trying to find the best possible way to resolve this," Janke said.

Janke says this situation is fairly unique.

"I would say it's pretty unusual for the state of North Dakota," Janke said.

There are also a few school-age children living at the home.

The family was involved in a 16 hour-long standoff in late June over six cattle that wandered onto their property.

According to court documents, when served with a search warrant by Nelson County deputies, Rodney refused to give the cattle back and said if they came onto his property they wouldn't be coming back.

When Rodney was arrested that day, he allegedly resisted and had to be tazed. His daughter, Abby, allegedly struck a sheriff's deputy and was also arrested.

After being placed in a squad car, Rodney allegedly caused over $1,000-worth of damage to the car.

When officers returned to the home later in the evening, they were met by the three brothers with long rifles and were allegedly threatened. The officers then fell back and called in reinforcements from the Grand Forks SWAT team and other agencies.

The brothers were taken into custody without incident the next morning.

They all failed to show up for their preliminary hearing on August 26. Bench warrants were issued that day for Thomas, Alex and Jacob Brossart. Bench warrants allow for an immediate on-sight arrest and are issued when defendants fail to appear in court.

The three are charged with terrorizing in the standoff, a Class C felony, which carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison and/or a $5,000 fine.

Rodney is charged with one count of terrorizing, a Class C felony, one count of theft of property, one count of criminal mischief, one count of failure to comply with estray order (for the cattle) and one count of preventing arrest.