Pendleton gets life sentence for killing Grand Forks police officer
GRAND FORKS, N.D. (KVRR) – Salamah Pendleton is sentenced to two life sentences without the possibility of parole for killing Grand Forks Police Officer Cody Holte and his mother Lola Moore in May 2020.
“The defendant determined his own sentences today by the many choices he made May 27, 2020. The defendant’s choices claimed his family’s 61-year-old mother and grandmother. Those same choices forfeited his liberty and gave him a lifetime reputation as a coward,” Judge Don Hager said.
Several family members came to the stand to talk about how they wish for Pendleton to receive the death sentence.
“In a perfect world, Pendleton would get the death sentence, but in the state of North Dakota criminals like him can’t get that which is so sad. I believe the defendant should get the maximum sentence and never see the day of light again. All of his rights should be gone. Why do I say this? Because he took Cody’s life away and he will never get to see his son Gunny play sports, his first prom, graduation, marriages and the list goes on,” Holte’s aunt Stefanie Okroi said.
Holte’s widow, Mandy, also gave an emotional impact statement saying that he had a passion for serving and protecting his community.
“He was a police officer, a good police officer. He was proud to serve his community, make it better, a safer place for everyone. He has always looked for the good in others, not the bad. He wanted to help; Cody chose this profession saying, “I do this so others don’t have to,'” Mandy Holte said.
“The defendants’ actions hyper bonded all law enforcement and it strengthened the public trust, cooperation, and confidence in them,” Hager said.
In honor of Holte’s badge number 639, Pendleton received six years and 39 days for possession of marijuana with intent to sell it.
Pendleton was also sentenced to 20 years each for the attempted murders of Grand Forks Police Sergeant Kelly McLean and Grand Forks County Sheriff’s Office Corporal Ron Nord, as well as five years each for terrorizing and reckless endangerment.