Fargo man among three charged in violent Grand Forks robbery in which Chihuahua KilledGRAND FORKS – Two men already in custody on unrelated drug charges – one of them from Fargo – have been charged in the violent robbery of a mobile home in north Grand Forks on Monday.
By: Chris Bieri, INFORUM
GRAND FORKS – Two men already in custody on unrelated drug charges – one of them from Fargo – have been charged in the violent robbery of a mobile home in north Grand Forks on Monday.
Allen Joseph Ratliff, 28, of Grafton, N.D., and his brother Nathan Lawrence Ratliff, 27, of Fargo, are facing robbery, burglary, aggravated assault, theft and felonious restraint charges.
A third man, Cody Joe Boulduc, 24, of Grand Forks, is facing the same charges but has not yet been arrested.
Grand Forks police are asking the public for help in locating Boulduc.
In total, the men are each facing six felonies, one Class A, one Class B and four Class C counts. If convicted on all charges, they could face up to 50 years in prison.
According to an incident report, three masked males broke into the home of Sherman and Carmen Jones at 1823 N. Washington St., Lot 136 of the Valley Ho Trailer Court at 5:42 a.m. Monday.
The couple was bound with duct tape and struck with small wooden clubs. One of the Jones’s five Chihuahua’s, “Baby,” was beaten to death by one of the intruders.
Grand Forks Police Lt. Jim Remer said the investigation into the dog’s death is still open and active.
Sherman Jones told police he was knocked unconscious and his wife was hit in the jaw by the men, who were filmed on surveillance video at the trailer.
The report said the couple told police that the men took two televisions, a small safe, jewelry and Carmen’s purse, where her medication was stored.
A neighbor, Arthur Rice, and Chad Nelson, a newspaper deliveryman, both reported seeing the robbers.
Rice said he saw them running south out of the trailer court with a TV and said a week earlier, he saw two masked men enter the same trailer and leave immediately.
He gave police a license plate number of a suspicious vehicle, which was tracked back to Allen Ratliff’s girlfriend, Genivieve Slominski. Police later found the two TVs at her residence.
Nelson told police he saw three men loading items into a red Hyundai Tiburon.
On Tuesday, the day after the robbery, police pulled over a dark blue Cadillac for failure to display current tabs.
According to an incident report, the vehicle was driven by Amber Hamley, with both Ratliffs and Joseph Olson as passengers.
Police spotted Olson trying to hide needles between the seat and back cushion near a 2-year-old girl sitting in the back seat.
A search of the vehicle found a metal one-hitter pipe that was claimed by Nathan Ratliff. Police found jewelry and ID cards in the trunk.
Police obtained search warrant for the vehicle and found Hydrocodone, Adderall, Dextroamphetamine and Morphine Sulphate, as well as drug paraphernalia and what is believed to be marijuana.
All four were arrested and are facing five felony drug charges. Olson is also charged with felony child endangerment.
Olson told police he and Allen Ratliff drove the Tiburon from Fargo to Hamley’s residence in Grand Forks at midnight on April 29, according to the incident report. The vehicle was reported stolen to Fargo police.
He said they brought the car to Grand Forks to be used in the robbery. Olson was initially supposed to go, but didn’t because the Ratliffs thought he would confess if he was caught. He was replaced by Boulduc.
Slominski told police the Ratliffs and Boulduc arrived at her apartment after the robbery and laid out the stolen items on her son’s bed.
“It was a pretty wide-ranging investigation,” Remer said. “Adequate resources were assigned to the case. We had quite a few investigators and assists from the (Grand Forks Area) Drug Task Force and the BCI (Bureau of Criminal Investigation).”