News and Press Releases

Fort Totten Man Sentenced for Domestic Assault by a Habitual Offender

September 17, 2012

FARGO - U.S. Attorney Timothy Q. Purdon announced that on Sept. 17, 2012, Roman Cavanaugh, Jr. of Fort Totten, N.D., was sentenced before U.S. District Judge Ralph R. Erickson on a charge of domestic assault by a habitual offender.

Judge Erickson sentenced Cavanaugh, Jr. to five years and six months in prison to be followed by three years of supervised release. Cavanaugh, Jr. was ordered to pay a $100 special assessment to the Crime Victim's Fund.

Cavanaugh, Jr., 36, pleaded guilty on June 29, 2012, to assaulting the mother of his children on July 7, 2008. Cavanaugh, Jr. previously was convicted of committing domestic violence against the same woman on at least three separate occasions in Spirit Lake Tribal Court in Fort Totten, N.D. These convictions were entered on Jan. 14, 2008, April 6, 2005, and Mar. 21, 2005 respectively.

On July 7, 2008, Cavanaugh, Jr., Amanda Luedke, and their three children were driving in a vehicle on Spirit Lake Indian Reservation. While driving, Cavanaugh, Jr. started to argue with Luedke. Cavanaugh, Jr. grabbed and jerked Luedke by her hair and bashed her face to the dashboard of the car. During the struggle, Luedke put her hand on Cavanaugh Jr.’s face in an attempt to push him away. Cavanaugh, Jr. bit into the web area between Luedke’s left thumb and fore finger leaving the area gouged. He then attempted
to choke Luedke.

Cavanaugh, Jr. pulled the car off the road, went around the vehicle and pulled Luedke out of the vehicle onto the road. He kicked her several times then left in his vehicle. Luedke walked to a nearby neighbor’s residence who transported her to the hospital to be treated for the injuries.

The case was investigated by the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Dec. 9, 2011, Cavanaugh, Jr. was sentenced to serve 52 months’ incarceration for physically assaulting two of his children on the Spirit Lake Reservation. The sentence handed down today is to be served consecutive to this sentence.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Janice M. Morley prosecuted both cases.






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