A state trooper in North Dakota submitted his resignation last week after a criminal and internal investigation was launched against him for writing ‘fake tickets.’
35-year-old Jeremie Meisel, who was stationed in the Bismarck office, is accused of writing tickets that were never given out to citizens, in order to boost his citation numbers and receive financial incentives.
Meisel was placed on administrative leave on March 11 but has yet to face charges.
North Dakota Highway Patrol Capt. Aaron Hummel said the investigation started after a “concerned citizen contacted the NDHP in reference to a citation that was issued by Meisel.”
The case was first investigated by his supervisor who found it was a possibility that Meisel was writing the fake tickets, Hummel said, but was then turned over to the Bureau of Criminal Investigation to look into falsification of public records.
It appears unlikely that Mesile will face prosecution.
“The reason that we are declining charges is that based about the statute and the facts of the case we do not believe that we could secure a conviction,” Burleigh County State’s Attorney Richard Riha said.
While the criminal case was being investigated, the Highway Patrol launched its own internal investigation. It was at this time Meisel submitted a letter of resignation – before completion of the internal probe.
Both Meisel and Hummel have refused to comment on the particulars of the case.
Meisel’s legal counsel, Bismarck attorney Chris Redmann, says his client was not writing fake tickets and called the Highway Patrol’s presentation of the matter “incredibly unbalanced.”
He said the real culprit behind Meisel’s resignation are arrest quota policies, which, the Highway Patrol says, don’t exist.
“Jeremie was not falsifying reports, issuing illegal citations, or even inflating numbers,” Redmann said. “That’s evidenced by the fact the prosecutor’s office declined any and all charges.”
Meisel joined the North Dakota Highway Patrol in August of 2005.