Joseph Daniel Little Coyote, Sr. Sentenced in U.S. District Cour
The United States Attorney's Office announced that during a federal court session in Billings, on November 3, 2010, before Senior U.S. District Judge Jack D. Shanstrom, JOSEPH DANIEL LITTLE COYOTE, SR., a 67-year-old resident of Lame Deer/Ashland, appeared for sentencing. LITTLE COYOTE was sentenced to a term of:
- Prison: 12 months and 1 day
- Special Assessment: $500
- Supervised Release: 4 years
LITTLE COYOTE was sentenced in connection with his guilty plea to (5) counts of distribution of marijuana to persons under the age of 21.
In an Offer of Proof filed by Assistant U.S. Attorney Marcia K. Hurd, the government stated it would have proved at trial the following:
LITTLE COYOTE came under investigation when the FBI received information that he had been routinely providing marijuana to juveniles on the Northern Cheyenne Indian Reservation for a number of years. It was alleged that LITTLE COYOTE allowed them to smoke his marijuana with him as well as gave them marijuana to smoke on their own. A number of juveniles gave statements to law enforcement about LITTLE COYOTE's marijuana usage and his giving them marijuana to smoke in 2005 and 2006, and in some cases, continuing until recently.
Evidence at trial would have been presented by a number of juveniles and adults who either received such distributions or were present when others did. LITTLE COYOTE did not distribute for any monetary gain and the amount he distributed is unknown.
Because there is no parole in the federal system, the "truth in sentencing" guidelines mandate that LITTLE COYOTE will likely serve all of the time imposed by the court. In the federal system, LITTLE COYOTE does have the opportunity to earn a sentence reduction for "good behavior." However, this reduction will not exceed 15% of the overall sentence.
The investigation was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.