FAQs: Frequently Asked Questions
Can I have a green license plate light?
No, according to North Dakota Century Code 39-21-26(2), you cannot have a lamp or device that displays a green or red light that is visible from the front of the vehicle. The Codes does not, however, make mention to similar lights on the back of the vehicle.
Can I have an officer run a license plate?
No, State and Federal regulations prohibit officers/dispatch from using the computer to retrieve information not related to investigative purposes, and the information can only be shared with law enforcement entities.
Can I make a police report over the phone or does a police officer have to come to my house?
You may wish to make a report over the phone. However, we feel that visiting with you in person greatly enhances our relationship with you.
Can you shoot off fireworks within the city limits?
No. Unfortunately, firework use in the city is prohibited, with the exception of the city-sanctioned professional fireworks display on the 4th of July at the old DSU Rodeo Grounds. “Fireworks” include anything that is to be lit, including (but not limited to) bottle rockets, fire crackers, and sparklers. Party poppers and snaps are allowed.
You may use fireworks outside the city limits in the county. However, if the fire index is elevated to a level which prohibits such use, officials will notify the public that a burn/fireworks ban is in place.
Discharging fireworks within city limits is considered an “infraction”, with a fine of $150.
For more information about firework safety, visit the Dickinson Fire Department’s website at Dickinson Fire
The current Rangeland Fire Index can be found by Clicking Here
Do officers have to show me their radar reading when I get pulled over for speeding?
No, state law does not require the officer to show you the radar reading. Partially, this is due to the safety of you and the officer. Officers generally don’t bring people back to the squad car unless necessary.
Does Dickinson have a teen curfew law? If so, what is it?
Dickinson does have a curfew law. Curfew on Sunday-Thursday nights is 11:00 PM to 5:00 AM. Friday and Saturday night curfew is 1:00 AM to 5:00 AM. If a juvenile works past curfew, he/she is allowed to travel directly home from work. Otherwise, juveniles are cited into juvenile court for curfew violations. This may result in fines, community service, or other forms of judgments at the discretion of the juvenile judge. Parents may also be cited into municipal court for frequent curfew violations by the juvenile.
How can I report a vehicle left on the street for a long period of time?
Call the Police Department non-emergency number at 701-456-7759, and advise the dispatcher of the location and description of the vehicle. An officer will check the vehicle to determine whether or not it can be legally on the street. If it is not legal, it will be tagged as an overparked motor vehicle and scheduled for removal within 48 hours of being tagged.
How can I report narcotics activity in my neighborhood?
Any suspected narcotics activity, no matter how insignificant, is encouraged to be reported by contacting our non-emergency number at 701-456-7759. You may also submit a text tip by visiting the Badlands Crimestoppers page in the Crime Prevention menu above.
How do I contact the Police Department?
In an emergency, dial 911. This number applies for police, fire, or ambulance. For all non-emergency calls requiring police assistance, call 701-456-7759.
How do I get information about the jail?
The Southwest Multi-County Correctional Center (SWMCCC) is a regional detention facility for southwestern North Dakota. The facility is located on the east section of the Law Enforcement Center and is open for visitation by appointment. The facility also handles booking, processing, and bonding/bail procedures for the Dickinson Police Department. To schedule visitation, inquire about bond/bail procedures, or for more detailed information, contact the SWMCCC Coordinator at 701-456-7790.
How many officers are in the Department?
The Department currently has 43 sworn officers and 21 civilian employee.
I need to have fingerprints taken. Where can I get this done?
The Police Department offers fingerprinting for city residents by appointment only. Non-residents and out-of-city county residents are directed to the Stark County Sheriff’s Office.
I received a traffic ticket and I don’t think it is fair. What can I do?
If you received a traffic ticket and you feel that it was issued in error, we encourage you to set up an administrative hearing before a judge. To do this, you must sign and date your copy of the citation in the section “Request for Hearing”. You must still post the bond/fine amount within 12 days of the issuance of the ticket. Your bond/fine may be reduced/dismissed if the judge rules in your favor.
I received a traffic ticket, where do I pay?
You may either mail the ticket via postal mail by using the envelope you were given during the traffic stop. You may also pay the fine in person by going to City Hall (99 2 ST E) during normal business hours. The reverse side of the ticket will have information regarding payment and instructions on requesting an administrative hearing if you desire.
I saw an officer “bust” an intersection with his lights and siren only to turn them off when he/she got down the road. What was he doing?
Sometimes an officer responding to an emergency call is cancelled and this is why he/she may appear to be using his/her lights to get through an intersection. Officers sometimes are also required to turn off lights and sirens when approaching an address where a “stealth” approach is necessary.
I would like to ride along with a police officer. How do I sign up?
Residents who want to ride along with a police officer may obtain a ride along application from the police department. Once it is completed and turned in at the Police Department, an officer will contact you to set up a date and time for this worthwhile experience.
If I have a complaint against an officer, what should I do?
The Department is committed to maintaining a professional force; and in this regard if anyone has a complaint concerning an officer’s actions, he/she is encouraged to speak with a Shift Supervisor about the incident. No one should feel that any sort of retaliation will come as a result of complaint. The department will diligently investigate the complaint and implement corrective measures if they are warranted.
If you lost your bike, is there a place you can go to look for your lost/stolen bike?
Our dispatch keeps a log of any stolen/missing bikes reported to the department. That way, if officers come across an abandoned bike, we can get it back to the owner. Therefore, if you have a missing/stolen bike, please contact the department and report it as such.
If we cannot find the owner, the bike is placed into our impound, located at the old Public Works Building on West Broadway. If you want to look at the impounded bikes to see if one may be yours, contact our dispatch and they will send an officer to meet you at the building.
The best way to prevent bike theft is to keep your bikes secured with a lock or by placing them in a locked building. Moreover, we urge citizens to purchase city bike licenses. These greatly help officers locate the owner of the bike, as we have a list of the license numbers on file at the department. The licenses can be purchased for a small fee at City Hall during normal business hours.
Is it true that police officers can’t pull you over after following you for more than 6 blocks?
No, there is no such limit. In some cases, an officer may be following you because they are observing your driving–and it may take several blocks or miles before they determine if a traffic stop is necessary . Of course, in many instances, it’s likely you’re not being followed at all. The officer may simply be going in the same general direction you are!
Should I report suspicious activity in my neighborhood?
Yes, the Police Department depends on citizens calling to report crimes or suspicious activity. No matter how insignificant the suspicious activity may seem, we encourage you to call in. Dispatch will ask questions about the suspicious activity to determine its nature and ask for descriptions of the people involved. Please call 701-456-7759 to report suspicious activity. You may remain anonymous!
What are the window tint laws in North Dakota?
The front windshield of your vehicle must have a light transmittance of atleast 75% (30% tint) and other windows of atleast 50% (50% tint). All windows behind the operator are exempt from this law, provided the vehicle is equipped with outside mirrors. This law is partially in effect for motorist safety (ability to see if the other driver is looking at you), and for officer safety.
What can I do about barking dogs in my neighborhood? How can I report animals running loose in my neighborhood?
To report incidents involving animals, call the non-emergency number at 701-456-7759. Animal owners are usually given a written warning for the first barking/running offense of their animal. Subsequent offenses may result in a $50.00 fine.
What can I do about my noisy neighbors?
While the noise is occurring, call the non-emergency number 701-456-7759. If officers can hear the noise/music upon arrival, they can take enforcement action. Usually, the tenant-in-violation is given a written warning for the first offense and a court summons (B-Misdemeanor criminal offense) for subsequent offenses. If you live in rental property and the noise is an ongoing problem, you may consider contacting your landlord and informing him/her of the situation.
What is the 24/7 Program?
The 24/7 program was developed by the Attorney General’s office as a response to repeat offenders of alcohol-related crimes. The entire state adopted the 24/7 program in 2008, and Dickinson has been participating in it ever since.
The main use for our 24/7 program is to monitor individuals who have been convicted of their 2nd DUI offense and are out on unsupervised probation. They are required to come to the LEC twice a day and submit a breath sample. If their breath registers any amount of alcohol, or if they fail to show up for testing, they are immediately taken into custody. The individual must pay $2/day for the tests to help offset the cost of the program. The Stark County Sheriff’s Department administers the tests.
The program is also used for individuals on parole & probation, and those out on bond for a domestic assault or other crimes where alcohol was involved. Statewide, the statistics are that 98% of the participants successfully complete the program, meaning they are not drinking (and driving) and not reoffending. For more information, visit the Attorney General’s website about 24/7
Where is the Police Department located?
2475 State Avenue North. From Exit 59, take 30th Avenue West north to 21st Street West and travel east. The PSC is located near the intersection of State Avenue and 21st Street West. From Exit 61, travel north on 3rd Avenue West to 21st Street West. Turn west onto 21st Street West until reaching State Avenue.
Why aren’t officers catching “real” criminals, instead of writing tickets?
It is the policy of the department to enforce all of the laws of the State of North Dakota, and by doing such, the department is committed to effective traffic enforcement to reduce accidents, apprehend drunk drivers, and to ensure a high degree of safety on Dickinson’s roadways.
Why can’t officers resolve or intervene in a civil matter?
Officers generally do not actively get involved in civil disputes as they are not empowered by state statute to do so. These incidents are best dealt with by contacting an attorney or the courthouse. However, do not hesitate to call for an officer in any situation, as he/she will recommend some options available to you.
Why do I see officers speeding all over the place?
The Department Policies are specific about an officer’s driving habits, and forbids any violation of speed that is not related to police duties. Officers are allowed, as set by statute and Department Policy, to exceed at times, the speed limit only as it relates directly to a police call.
Why do officers shine so many lights when they stop a vehicle?
Officers are trained to utilize lighting techniques to illuminate a vehicle for the safety of themselves and the occupants of the vehicle, and it is not meant to be something that is annoying or a form of harassment.
Why do they ask so many questions when I call the police?
Police dispatchers are trained to get as much information as possible in order to determine the nature of the problem and its seriousness. The information you provide will further enhance your safety and that of the police officers responding to the call.