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Press Release

Yakama Man Found Guilty of Assault with a Dangerous Weapon

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Washington

Yakima, Washington - Vanessa R. Waldref, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Washington, announced that a jury returned a verdict on May 15, 2024, following the trial of 43-year-old Joey Anthony Andy.  Andy was found guilty of one count of Assault with a Dangerous Weapon.

Evidence introduced at trial established that on April 4, 2023, a victim, an enrolled member of the Yakama Nation, was leaving Noah’s Ark Homeless shelter in Wapato, Washington. As the victim was walking away from the shelter, he was confronted by Andy. Andy was upset with the victim because Andy believed the victim had stolen his Bluetooth speaker. Andy shoved then shoved the victim. After the victim stepped back, Andy pulled out a knife, lifted the sleeve on this hooded sweatshirt (presumably to ensure he did not get blood on his clothing), and lifted the knife, and then swung the knife at the victim’s head. As the victim attempted to dodge the blow, the knife hit the victim, leaving a four-inch laceration to the side of the victim’s head. The laceration cut down to the victim’s skull and required fourteen staples to close. 

The victim ran back to Noah’s Ark for help. There, employees rendered first aid and called police. Wapato Police later located Andy in the neighborhood near Noah’s Ark. Although Andy attempted to flee, officers took Andy into custody without incident after a short chase.

United States District Judge Mary K. Dimke presided over the trial, which began on May 13, 2024. Sentencing in this matter is set for September 17, 2024.

“Prosecuting violent crime occurring on Tribal land in the Eastern District of Washington is a major priority for the U.S. Attorney’s Office. Mr. Andy carried out a violent attack in broad daylight that left his victim with a serious injury,” stated U.S. Attorney Waldref. “Violent assaults on Native American land are key drivers of the crisis of Missing or Murdered Indigenous People.  My office remains committed to prosecuting these and other serious crimes, such as domestic violence, drug trafficking, child exploitation, and sexual violence, which frequently contribute to this ongoing crisis. I commend our federal, tribal and local partners for their investigative work, and the prosecutors from my office who secured a conviction in this case.”

“The sudden violence of this assault is alarming and demonstrates that prison is where Mr. Andy belongs.” said Richard A. Collodi, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Seattle field office. “Fortunately, the victim of this attack will recover. The FBI and our partners will continue investigating these cases to make our state’s reservations safer for the people who call them home.”

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. This case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Todd Swensen and Bree R. Black Horse.


Robert Curry

Public Affairs Specialist 

Updated May 17, 2024

Indian Country Law and Justice