A Thief River Falls man was sentenced in Pennington County District Court for felony first-degree criminal sexual conduct. A felony charge of second-degree criminal sexual conduct was dismissed against Donald Albert Nesdahl Jr., 35.
For the first-degree charge, Nesdahl was sentenced to 12 years in prison. He was ordered to not use or possess firearms, ammunition, or explosives for his lifetime unless his civil rights are restored. Nesdahl was ordered to supply a DNA sample. He was also ordered to pay $210 in fees and fines.
The charges stemmed from a Dec. 1 report to the Thief River Falls Police Department, according to the complaint. Nesdahl’s girlfriend reported that her 11-year-old daughter told the woman that Nesdahl had touched her inappropriately over her clothing and kissed her a couple of weeks earlier. The woman told police that she had an argument with Nesdahl that evening and the girl had reported the touching to her mom.
When asked, the woman said she believed the girl, but she said she couldn’t see Nesdahl engaging in such conduct. The girl’s grandfather also lives in the home. He told police that he spoke with the girl, who told him that Nesdahl placed his hands in her pants and inappropriately touched her.
Three days later, the girl was interviewed at the Family Advocacy Center in Bemidji. The girl said Nesdahl kissed her on various parts of her body, including her breasts, lips, and cheek, while they were on his bed Friday, Nov. 27. At one point, he was lying on top of her.
He also engaged in the conduct that her grandfather described to the police. She said she pulled his hand out of her pants and told him to stop. Nesdahl told the girl that he would give his PlayStation to her if she engaged in certain conduct in the future. The girl said her mom and grandfather weren’t home at the time, but her sister was home.
The juvenile police investigator interviewed Nesdahl on Friday, Dec. 4. He said the girl was lying and he would take a lie detector test. He said the girl becomes mad when he tells her no. On the day in question, Nesdahl said he told her that she couldn’t go to a friend’s house or play a board game. He also said she lies about brushing her teeth or doing her schoolwork.
He said the grandfather was also home on the day of the incident. Later that day, a Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension agent was asked to assist with the case. She interviewed Nesdahl on Tuesday, Dec. 15. Nesdahl admitted kissing the girl on the lips and giving her a hug. He said she continued kissing him, and he also kissed her neck at some point. Nesdahl admitted inappropriately touching her breasts over her clothing. He said the girl grabbed his genitals, and he then placed his hand down her pants and inappropriately touched her.
He stopped when the grandfather arrived home. Nesdahl said the incident occurred within a 10-minute period earlier that week, not on Nov. 27. He denied asking her to engage in any contact in exchange for his PlayStation.
A week earlier, the police investigator spoke to the mother, who provided him with a video that her daughter sent to her on Dec. 1. In the video, the girl, who appeared to be upset, accuses Nesdahl of inappropriately touching her and kissing her. She asked her mom to come home.
Nesdahl was convicted in Polk County District Court of first-degree criminal sexual conduct in 2004. The complaint indicated that he is required to register as a predatory offender. In his first interview with law enforcement, Nesdahl brought up his past. The investigator knew about the registration requirement and asked Nesdahl about it. In that case, Nesdahl said he provided his nephew with candy, allowed him to stay up late, and let him play PlayStation until Nesdahl assaulted him.