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St. Croix County sheriff's deputy arrested in North Dakota

A St. Croix County sheriff’s deputy was placed on paid leave this week after an alcohol-related arrest in North Dakota.

Ryan D. Fowler was arrested Wednesday on suspicion of being in physical control of a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol, according to a Bismarck police report.

Fowler, 35, was one of four St. Croix County Sheriff’s Office deputies sent to North Dakota to assist authorities with protests where the Dakota Access Pipeline is being constructed.

St. Croix County Sheriff John Shilts confirmed the arrest Friday and said Fowler has been placed on paid administrative leave while the incident is investigated by the department’s office of professional standards.

“And then I’ll make a determination of discipline,” he said.

The report lists only that the incident occurred at 11:24 p.m. on East Interstate Avenue in Bismarck; no narrative was provided in the document. Fowler is listed as operator of a Ford Explorer that was involved in the incident, according to the report.

Shilts didn’t elaborate on the circumstances surrounding the arrest, saying he hadn’t yet seen the full report.

“But I’m certainly disappointed,” he said. “And that’s an understatement.”

Shilts said he has taken Fowler off the department’s K-9 unit. Fowler joined the unit in 2015.

Arraignment in the case is set for Oct. 31 in Burleigh County, N.D.

Mike Longaecker

Mike Longaecker is the regional public safety reporter for RiverTown Multimedia. His coverage area spans St. Croix and Pierce counties. Longaecker served from 2011-2015 as editor of the Woodbury Bulletin. A University of Wisconsin-River Falls graduate, Longaecker previously reported for the Red Wing Republican Eagle and for the Forum Communications Minnesota Capitol Bureau. You can follow him on Twitter at @Longaecker

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