from the District Court of Stark County, Southwest Judicial
District, the Honorable Stacy J. Louser, Judge.
F. Murtha IV, Dickinson, ND, for petitioner and appellant.
Benjamin J. Sand (argued) and Michael C. Waller (appeared),
Bismarck, ND, for respondent and appellee.
VandeWalle, Chief Justice.
1] Parke William Little appealed from a district court order
denying his September 23, 2016, petition for a writ of
mandamus. The petition requested an order compelling the
Stark County Sheriff's Office to mail him notice that his
request for employment as a deputy sheriff in 2008 had been
refused. We affirm.
2] Little is a disabled veteran who formerly served in the
Marine Corps and the Army. Little worked for Stark County as
a special deputy from approximately 2008-2016.
3] In July 2008, while employed as a special deputy, Little
applied for a "deputy sheriff" position with Stark
County. Little indicated his veteran's preference status
in the application. Little was interviewed in November 2008.
After the interview, Little became aware the deputy sheriff
position was given to a non-veteran. Little continued to work
in his capacity as a special deputy for Stark County until
4] In March 2015, Little, through counsel, sent a letter to
the Stark County Sheriff's Department requesting written
notification why he was refused the 2008 deputy sheriff
position. The Department responded, referring Little's
attorney to direct the matter to the state's
attorney's office. Little, through counsel, submitted a
letter to the Stark County States Attorney and the Stark
County Sheriff on March 4, 2016, and received no response.
5] On September 23, 2016, Little filed a petition for writ of
mandamus requesting the Stark County Sheriff's Department
be required to comply with N.D.C.C. § 37-19.1-04(1).
Little sought to compel the Department to send him written
notice that his employment as a Stark County deputy sheriff
had been refused. On April 10, 2017, a hearing was held. The
district court denied the petition and dismissed with
prejudice, stating, among other reasons:
[T]he Court notes that as Little acknowledged at the April
10th 2017 hearing, he waited nearly eight years after being
employed as a Stark County Special Reserve Deputy to file the
pending action. This Court will not now exercise the
extraordinary remedy of granting a mandamus where the actions
of Little himself fail to support such relief.
6] Little argues he is entitled to the notice referenced in
N.D.C.C. § 37-19.1-04(1), which provides, in part:
If a veteran, or a qualified veteran's spouse, hereafter
known as the applicant, is not given the preference provided
in section 37-19.1-02 or 37-19.1-03, the applicant, within
fifteen calendar days after receipt of notification by
certified mail or through the online recruiting solution
system that employment has been refused, may request a
hearing as provided in subsection 3. The notification from
the employer must include the reasons for nonselection,
inform the applicant of the right to an appeal hearing,
inform the applicant of the requirement that the request for
a hearing must be filed by certified mail within fifteen
calendar days after the notification, inform the applicant
that a request for an appeal hearing must be made to the
commissioner of veterans' affairs at the included