Holte family shares emotional testimony at Pendleton sentencing

Pendleton took the life of his mother and Grand Forks police officer, Cody Holte

GRAND FORKS, N.D. (KVRR) – A Grand Forks man is sentenced to two life sentences without the possibility for parole for killing Grand Forks Police Officer,  Cody Holte and his mother Lola Moore in May 2020.

Salamah Pendleton was convicted on two counts of murder in the May 2020 killings of Grand Forks Police Officer Cody Holte and his mother, Lola Moore and several other charges.

“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,” says Judge Don Hager.

Several family members came to the stand to talk about how they wish for Pendleton to receive the death sentence.

Stefanie Okroi, Holte’s aunt, says, “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 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 widow, Mandy, also gave a emotional impact statement saying that he had a passion for serving and protecting his community.

Mandy Holte says, “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’.”

Judge Don Hager adds, “The defendants’ actions hyper bonded all law enforcement and it strengthened the public trust, cooperation, and confidence in them.”

In honor of Holte’s badge number 639, Pendleton received 6 years and 39 days for possession of marijuana with intent to sell it.

Categories: Crime, North Dakota News