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TRIBAL JUSTICE NEWS
March 19, 2012

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PUBLIC SAFETY INITIATIVES IN INDIAN COUNTRY

Read “Prevention and Recovery: Quarterly Newsletter for Indian Country”, developed by the Tribal Law and Order Act - Interagency Indian Alcohol and Substance Abuse Coordinating Committee, which is a multi-agency collaboration by the Departments of Justice, Interior and Health and Human Services.

U.S. Attorney's Office Announces Trial Training (U.S. Attorney for the District of Montana)

U.S. Attorney Michael W. Cotter announced that the U.S. Attorney's Office and the Montana/Wyoming Tribal Prosecutor's Association will participate in training at Salish and Kootenai College in Pablo, Mont., from March 21-22. The training will prepare participants for a mock trial domestic violence scenario. Tribal court prosecutors and defenders from Montana, Wyoming, North Dakota and Washington have committed to attend. Volunteers from Safe Harbor, Doves and Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes legal staff will act as volunteer jurors, and students from the University of Montana School of Law will serve as volunteer witnesses. The training will help participants improve their practical litigation and problem-solving skills.

VIOLENT CRIME PROSECUTION

Mission, S.D., Man Pleads Guilty to Assault (U.S. Attorney for the District of South Dakota)

U.S. Attorney Brendan V. Johnson announced that Clayton Paul High Pipe, 23, of Mission, S.D., pleaded guilty to assault resulting in serious bodily injury before U.S. District Judge Roberto A. Lange on Mar. 13, 2012. On Jul. 13, 2010, High Pipe and two other people randomly attacked a man, who suffered jaw fractures and other serious injuries. The assault occurred at the Sunrise Apartment Complex in Mission, S.D. A sentencing date was set for Jun. 4, 2012, and High Pipe faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Warm Springs, Ore., Woman Sentenced to Federal Prison for Involuntary Manslaughter (U.S. Attorney for the District of Oregon)

The U.S. Attorney's office announced that Jana Julia Jackson, 20, of Warm Springs, Ore., was sentenced to 30 months in prison and six months in a residential alcohol treatment program by U.S. District Judge Robert E. Jones on Mar. 12, 2012. Jackson previously pleaded guilty to involuntary man slaughter. On Oct. 11, 2011, Jackson was driving over the speed limit while under the influence of alcohol. She attempted to find a CD, lost control of the vehicle and crashed the car. Rodney Estimo, a passenger in the car and an enrolled member of the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs, was ejected from the vehicle and died as a result of traumatic injuries.

Navajo Man Indicted in Home Invasion (U.S. Attorney for the District of Arizona)

The U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Arizona announced that Lee Kinder Tso, 50, a resident of Many Farms, Ariz., and a member of the Navajo Nation, was indicted by a federal grand jury for assault resulting in serious bodily injury, assault with a dangerous weapon and use of a firearm during a crime of violence. The indictment alleges that Tso shot two victims with a rifle on the Navajo Nation Indian Reservation on Feb. 3, 2012. A conviction for each count of assault resulting in serious physical injury and assault with a dangerous weapon has a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. A conviction for use of a firearm during a crime of violence carries a penalty of 10 years to life in prison consecutive to any other time imposed.

Belcourt, N.D., Man Pleads Guilty to False Statements (U.S. Attorney for the District of South Dakota)

U.S. Attorney Timothy Q. Purdon announced that Robin Peltier, Jr., 23, of Belcourt, N.D., pleaded guilty to false statements in an investigation of a sexual assault in U.S. District Court. In a plea agreement, Pelterier admitted to lying about his presence in a car near Belcourt on Feb. 28, 2010, and lying about sexual acts with another person. A sentencing date was set for May 14, 2012, and Peltier faces a maximum penalty of eight years in prison and $250,000 fine.

Manderson, S.D., Man Sentenced for Sexual Abuse (U.S. Attorney for the District of South Dakota)

U.S. Attorney Brendan V. Johnson announced that Leo Villareal, 27, of Manderson, S.D., was sentenced to 120 months in prison, 10 years supervised release and $100 special assessment to the Victim Assistance Fund by U.S. District Judge Jeffrey L. Viken on Mar. 8, 2012. Villareal was previously convicted of one count of aggravated sexual abuse and one count of sexual abuse. In March 2010, Villarreal sexually assaulted a child under the age of 16 as well as an adult woman.

Browning, Mont., Man Sentenced for Sexual Abuse (U.S. Attorney for the District of Montana)

The U.S. Attorney's Office announced that Kevin Alfred Gobert, 26, of Browning, Mont., was sentenced to 60 months in prison, five years supervised release and $200 special assessment by U.S. District Judge Sam E. Haddon on Mar. 12, 2012. Gobert previously plead guilty to abusive sexual contact and production of obscene visual representation of the sexual abuse of a child. On Jan. 21, 2011, Gobert took pictures of a young girl's genital area and knowingly made sexual contact with the victim in the process. The incident occurred in a residence located in the external boundaries of the Blackfeet Indian reservation.

Rocky Boy, Mont., Man Pleads Guilty to Assault (U.S. Attorney for the District of Montana)

The U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Montana announced that Sage Ferguson, 18, a resident of Rocky Boy, Mont., and an enrolled member of the Chippewa Cree Indian Tribe, pleaded guilty to assault resulting in serious bodily injury on Mar. 13, 2012. On Aug. 28, 2011, Ferguson was driving while intoxicated and crashed a truck within the exterior boundaries of the Rocky Boy's Indian Reservation. As a result of the crash, a passenger suffered a thoracic fracture and paralysis from the waist down. A sentencing date was set for Jun. 25, 2012, and Ferguson faces possible penalties of 10 years in prison, three years supervised release and a $250,000 fine.

Browning, Mont., Man Sentenced for Assault (U.S. Attorney for the District of Montana)

The U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Montana announced that Allan Charles Lawson, 41, of Browning, Mont., was sentenced to 96 months in prison, three years supervised release and a $100 special assessment by U.S. District Judge Sam E. Haddon on Mar. 14, 2012. Lawson previously pleaded guilty to assault resulting in serious bodily injury. On Sept. 18, 2010, Lawson repeatedly punched the victim in the face after consuming methamphetamine. The victim obtained serious injuries from the assault, including a subarachnoid hemorrhage in the left parietal area and a left tripod fracture. The incident occurred within the external boundaries of the Blackfeet Indian Reservation.

Pine Ridge, S.D., Man Sentenced for Striking a Woman in the Face (U.S. Attorney for the District of South Dakota)

U.S. Attorney Brendan V. Johnson announced that Curtis Swift Bird, 55, of Pine Ridge, S.D., was sentenced to 19 months in prison, three years of supervised release and a $100 special assessment by U.S. District Judge Jeffrey L. Viken on Mar. 8, 2012. Swift Bird previously pleaded guilty to assault resulting in serious bodily injury. In Feb. 2011, Swift Bird hit a woman in the face, breaking her nose. The victim required surgery to repair the damage.

ENVIRONMENTAL CRIMES

Batesland, S.D., Man Sentenced for Selling Eagles and Hawks (U.S. Attorney for the District of South Dakota)

U.S. Attorney Brendan V. Johnson announced that Tilden Reddest, 40, of Batesland, S.D., was sentenced to five years probation, one year of weekend community confinement, 400 hours of community service and a $125 assessment to the Victim Assistance Fund by U.S. District Judge Jeffrey L. Viken on Feb. 24, 2012. Reddest was previously pleaded guilty to unlawfully trafficking in eagle feathers on Sept. 30, 2011.

 


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