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West Fargo man accused of kidnapping ex-girlfriend

Dispatchers received a call around 11:44 p.m. Sunday from a woman who said she got a text from her 19-year-old daughter asking for her to call police.

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Cole Simenson

MOORHEAD — A 24-year-old West Fargo man is facing multiple charges after allegedly kidnapping his teenage ex-girlfriend.

Cole Michael Simenson appeared Tuesday, Oct. 26, on felony charges of kidnapping, threats of violence and obstructing a legal process. The charges stem from a Sunday night call reporting a disturbance.

According to court documents:

Dispatchers received a call around 11:44 p.m. Sunday from a woman who said she got a text from her 19-year-old daughter asking for her to call the police. The teenager gave the mother a location near Glyndon, Minnesota.

Law enforcement went to that location but didn't find anyone there. Attempts to "ping" the phone for a location were unsuccessful.

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The next day, police received a text message from the teen's phone around 1:15 p.m. that said "help." Officers said the message came from an area north of Moorhead.

Clay County deputies found a black vehicle on a gravel road. Simenson, who resisted arrest as he was taken into custody, was in the vehicle with the teenager, the complaint said.

The teenager told police she and Simenson previously dated for several months, but they broke up after he locked her in his garage, the complaint said. She did not file a police report for that incident.

Simenson asked to speak with her, so he picked her up in West Fargo and drove to Moorhead. While questioning her, Simenson became aggressive and started to scare her, so she tried to exit the vehicle at a traffic light.

The 19-year-old told officers that's when Simenson allegedly grabbed her legs and pulled her back into the vehicle. He also took her phone as she tried to text her mother, the complaint alleged.

At one point in rural Clay County, the teenager was able to get out of the vehicle, but Simenson forced her back in, the complaint said. She said she believed Simenson would kill her and then himself when he said, “I’m already in trouble so I might as well go all the way," according to the complaint.

Simenson then threw the phone at her, so she was able to text help, the complaint said.

The teen said she hit her hand on the frame of the vehicle door as she was being forced back in the second time, which caused some pain, the complaint said. It doesn't appear she suffered any other injuries.

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Kidnappings are a rare occurrence in Clay County, Sheriff Mark Empting said.

Bond was set Tuesday at $50,000. If convicted of kidnapping, Simenson could face up to 40 years in prison.

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