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Published November 09, 2011, 10:37 AM

Additional Cash Discovered in Safe of Former Police Chief

At the finance committee briefing on November 7, 2011, City Administrator Jon Cameron reported to the Valley City Commission that $4,000 in cash from the sale of police weapons dating back to January 2005 was handed over to the Valley City Police Association during a department meeting last week.

CITY OF VALLEY CITY PRESS RELEASE:

At the finance committee briefing on November 7, 2011, City Administrator Jon Cameron reported to the Valley City Commission that $4,000 in cash from the sale of police weapons dating back to January 2005 was handed over to the Valley City Police Association during a department meeting last week. Cameron advised the members of the commission that the money was found in the locked safe of former police chief Dean Ross’ office as it was cleaned out on October 27, 2011.

In a memorandum to the commissioners following the October 27, 2011 event, Cameron reported that the $4,000 in cash was found and secured by an agent from the North Dakota Bureau of Criminal Investigation who in turn transferred custody of the cash to the Acting Police Chief. The cash was reportedly from the sale of used service weapons to several officers in early 2005 and was to have been returned to the Valley City Police Association. Ross provided no explanation to city officials as to why he had the funds in his office safe for almost 7 years instead of returning the money to the Association.

Also found in the safe was $40.00 in cash that had been donated by a citizen to purchase coffee for the police officers in October 2006 and $332.00 in cash related to a 2006 criminal case. This cash is in addition to the previously reported $25,000 in cash that Ross had in the safe and other funds belonging to CounterAct, the organization created by Ross and 2 other individuals.

The $4,000 in cash from the sale of the weapons was turned over to the members of the Police Association by Cameron and the money donated for coffee was also turned over by Cameron to the police officers at the department meeting last week. The $332.00 from the 2006 court case has been turned over to the court system.

It was also reported that former chief Ross has failed to return his city owned weapon, uniforms, radio, and city issued credit cards as required in his separation agreement signed on September 28, 2011. Ross and the other officers of CounterAct have also not provided the city with records of the deposit of $20,000 to an account at Wells Fargo Bank nor correspondence to and from the IRS and the State of North Dakota as required in the settlement agreement with CounterAct and its officers, also approved on September 28.

Valley City Mayor Robert Werkhoven stated “The other commissioners and I were surprised to learn of the additional cash discovered in the safe of former chief Ross. I am also disappointed that Ross has not returned the city property, as agreed, more than 1 month after the settlement agreement was signed. Hopefully Ross will do the right thing and follow through with the agreement as the City has done.”

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