Pipeline protester’s elderly endangerment case dismissed

Authorities have rejected one of two criminal cases against a Bismarck woman accused of mistreating her elderly father during protests against the Dakota Access oil pipeline.

Kathleen Bennett, 59, was accused of leaving her 82 -year-old mother with dementia bind to a chair in a rally tent in North Dakota while she attended performances in December 2016. The father was taken to a hospice during a snowstorm. Hospital organization said she was frail and malnourished.

Bennett in February pleaded not guilty to threatening a prone adult, a transgression accusation that carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison.

She was to stand tribulation next week, but the defense and trial concurred Tuesday to dismiss the case with $2,050 in punishments relinquished from Bennett’s bond, The Bismarck Tribune reported. Authorities said Bennett is in Nevada with limited funds, there are still also were difficulties with coming observers to the trial.

Bennett also is charged with exploiting her father by consuming $1,200 of her money without consent to hire hotel rooms, buy banquets and compensate law costs while her mother was hospitalized. She has pleaded not guilty to a trespas indictment that carries a maximum beating of five years in prison, and is scheduled for a three-day contest in January.

Court documents indicate the condition of Bennett’s mother has improved, and she is living in Nevada under the guardianship of two sons.

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