Weather Forecast


Driver convicted in fatal crash pleads guilty to felony drug charge

Cathleen Mary Dean

FARGO - A woman who was convicted for negligent homicide in a fatal sugar beet truck accident in 2009 pleaded guilty last month to a felony drug charge.

Cathleen Mary Dean, 54, of Barney pleaded guilty last August to the negligent homicide charge linked to a crash in Wahpeton that killed 18-year-old Annie Gjesdal.

She was ordered to serve a year and a day in prison, followed by two years of supervised probation.

While Dean was living at a Fargo halfway house in October, staff found synthetic marijuana in a hand-rolled cigarette in a pouch in her room, according to a police report included with the felony charge filed on Dec. 21, 2010, in Cass County District Court.

Officers say in the police report that Dean told them another resident gave her the hand-rolled cigarette, which she said she did not plan to smoke.

Dean pleaded guilty to a charge of possessing the synthetic compound JWH-018 on May 16 and was sentenced to 148 days she had already served in jail, according to court records.

Ron McBeth, an assistant Richland County state's attorney who prosecuted the fatal crash case, said because Dean was on parole, not probation, at the time of her arrest, she wasn't subject to having her probation revoked.

The state's online prison inmate locator shows Dean is being held in the Dakota Women's Correctional and Rehabilitation Center in New England, N.D. She is set to be released July 5.