Officials Point to SEMCA Review Saying They Followed Protocol

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Wahpeton’s Police Chief and member of a Southeast Drug Task Force in North Dakota said agents knew what they were doing in handling the Andrew Sadek case. Chief Scott Thorsteinson’s comments follow Thursday’s release of a review of SEMCA, the agency that prompted Sadek to become a drug informant after they caught Sadek selling a small amount of marijuana in and around the Wahpeton campus.

Sadek would go missing in May of last year and his body turned up in the Red River in June, killed by a gunshot and found wearing a backpack full of rocks as well.

The review offered a few minor changes to how the agency should conduct their investigations.

"law enforcement...we're generally not popular. The sheep dog is not loved by the flock and they're hated by the wolf but we do it anyway,” said Chief Thorsteinson.

Thorsteinson, a SEMCA board member, said the review provides ample evidence that they do things by the book.

"These types of investigations are conducted the same way pretty much everywhere where people breathe in and out. They never did anything wrong that needed to be changed. Not that people can't make mistakes don't get me wrong,” he explained.

The review spells out recommendations that SEMCA officials said they had already adopted: minor changes to the way SEMCA conducts business as well as including a Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI) agent on the SEMCA board. That agent would be stationed in Wahpeton.

“To answer your question would it be under the Attorney General's office? Not necessarily, it's a combined effort, equal effort of all participating agencies if BCI is on that task force,” explained Director of the BCI, Dallas Carlson.

Director Carlson said it’s not a vote of “no confidence” in SEMCA. Rather, it’s just that they want an agent back in Wahpeton where one used to be stationed. The position was moved to Williston due to the rising population and rise in crime in the oil patch.

As the North Dakota Legislature must make the final decision of whether to return BCI’s presence to Wahpeton, Chief Thorsteinson said SEMCA welcomes the inclusion of a BCI Agent to their ranks.

Valley News Live also reached out to Andrew Sadek’s mother, Tammy Sadek, who claims her son was murdered. Tammy Sadek said the review shows nothing important. She said all the report shows is that further investigation is needed into the SEMCA Drug Task Force.