Defendant Admits to Murder on Nez Perce Indian Reservation
COEUR D'ALENE - Raymond Antoine Scott, Jr., 38, of Lapwai, Idaho, pleaded guilty today to second degree murder, U.S. Attorney Wendy J. Olson announced. Scott was indicted by a federal grand jury in Coeur d'Alene on March 18, 2014.
According to the plea agreement, Scott admitted that on July 9, 2013, he intentionally struck William Reich, who was known as Bear on the reservation, on the left side of the head with a sharp object. That blow resulted in a fracture to Reich's skull that damaged his brain and caused his death. After the defendant struck Reich, he went to several residences where he admitted to killing Reich. The case was in federal court because the defendant and the victim are both enrolled members of the Nez Perce Indian Tribe, and the crime occurred on the Nez Perce Indian Reservation.
The charge of second degree murder is punishable by up to life in prison, a maximum fine of $250,000.00, and up to five years of supervised release.
Sentencing is set for July 28, 2015, before Chief U.S. District Judge B. Lynn Winmill at the federal courthouse in Coeur d'Alene.
“While no criminal prosecution can bring back the life of William Reich, we are hopeful that bringing his murderer to justice will provide the family and community an opportunity to heal,” said Olson.
The case was investigated by Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Nez Perce Tribal Police and the Lewiston Police Department.