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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Idaho

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, July 1, 2022

Federal Jury Convicts Lapwai Man for Assault with a Dangerous Weapon

COEUR D’ALENE – After a three-day trial, a federal jury sitting in Coeur d’Alene found Qaya Mikel Gordon, 20, guilty of two counts of Assault with a Dangerous Weapon, U.S. Attorney Josh Hurwit announced today.  Chief U.S. District Judge David C. Nye presided over the trial, which began on June 27.  The case was charged and tried in federal court because the Defendant and victims were tribal members and the crime was a felony that occurred on the Nez Perce Indian reservation.

According to court records and evidence presented at trial, Gordon attacked and injured his mother and her boyfriend with a hammer on November 1, 2021.  Gordon initially denied involvement in the crime, telling the police that he was not there.  At trial, however, he acknowledged that he was there but claimed that he acted in self-defense.  The jury found him guilty. 

Chief U.S. District Judge David C. Nye set sentencing for September 14, 2022, at 9:00 a.m. at the federal courthouse in Coeur d’Alene.

U.S. Attorney Hurwit attributed the successful investigation and prosecution to the collaborative effort of the Nez Perce Tribal Police and Prosecutor’s Offices, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the U.S. Attorney’s Office.  “We succeed in protecting our citizens and furthering the interests of justice when we work together,” he said. 

Hurwit also encourages those experiencing domestic violence or those who know of someone in need of help to reach out to local law enforcement or to the free and confidential National Domestic Violence Hotline by calling 1-800-799-SAFE, texting “START” to 88788, or visiting their website at www.thehotline.org.

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Topic(s): 
Violent Crime
Indian Country Law and Justice
Contact: 
Christy Gunderson Public Information Officer (208) 334 -1211
Updated July 1, 2022