St. Paul Man Pleads Guilty To Burglary On The Red Lake Indian Reservation
MINNEAPOLIS—Earlier today in federal court, a 37-year-old St. Paul man pleaded guilty
to invading and burglarizing a home on the Red Lake Indian Reservation. Robert Joseph
Downwind pleaded guilty to one count of burglary in the first degree. Downwind, who was
indicted on September 12, 2011, entered his plea before United States District Court Chief
Judge Michael J. Davis.
In his plea agreement, Downwind admitted that on July 24, 2011, at approximately 2 a.m.,
he entered a residence by cutting the screen on an open window. In addition, Downwind, an
Indian, admitted he intended to steal money and other items while the homeowner, whom he
did not know, slept in her bedroom. While he was inside the residence, the homeowner woke
and confronted him. Downwind assaulted her, pushed her to the ground, and took her purse,
which contained money and identification cards.
For his crime, Downwind faces a potential maximum penalty of 20 years in prison. Judge
Davis will determine his sentence at a future hearing. This case is the result of an investigation
by the Red Lake Tribal Police Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. It is being
prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Deidre Y. Aanstad.
Because the Red Lake Indian Reservation is a federal-jurisdiction reservation, some of the
crimes that occur there are investigated by the FBI in conjunction with the Red Lake Tribal
Police Department. Those cases are prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office.