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Arresting officer in two big I-94 drug busts quits after cases dismissed

An Interstate 94 traffic stop the morning of Jan. 21, 2018, about 8 miles east of Jamestown, N.D., resulted in a Stutsman County deputy seizing 476 pounds of marijuana. Special to The Forum

JAMESTOWN, N.D.—A Stutsman County deputy who made two traffic stops resulting in the seizure of hundreds of pounds of marijuana but did not result in any convictions has resigned.

Stutsman County Sheriff Chad Kaiser said Matt Thom resigned citing "personal reasons and a desire to expand his goals outside law enforcement."

Thom was the arresting officer in two major drug cases that were dismissed in the past four weeks because of problems with each traffic stop that led to the searches that located drugs.

In one case, 476 pounds of marijuana were seized and in the other, 198 pounds of pot was found. Base cases resulted from traffic stops on Interstate 94.

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A judge threw out evidence in one case, and the Stutsman County state's attorney declined to prosecute another case at the request of the sheriff's office.

Thom also was the handler of the sheriff's department dog. With Thom's resignation, the Stutsman County Commission on Tuesday approved the transfer of the dog to Thom.

Kaiser said the dog was scheduled to be retired in about two years and it would be impossible to train another officer to work with the dog in that period of time.

"I'm sad to see him go," Kaiser said of Thom. "He worked hard and was a good officer and a great canine officer."

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