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Press Release

Joseph Daniel Bahr, Jr. Pleads Guilty In U.S. Federal Court

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

The United States Attorney's Office announced that during a federal court session in Billings, on July 22, 2013, before U.S. District Judge Donald W. Molloy, JOSEPH DANIEL BAHR, JR., a 42-year-old resident of Lame Deer and an enrolled member of the Northern Cheyenne Tribe, pled guilty to attempted sexual abuse. Sentencing has been set for October 23, 2013. He is currently detained.

In an Offer of Proof filed by Assistant U.S. Attorney Lori Harper Suek, the government stated it would have proved at trial the following:

On June 23, 2011, the victim and a friend stayed overnight at BAHR's home in Lame Deer, which is within the boundaries of the Northern Cheyenne Indian Reservation. The victim, the friend, and BAHR were drinking that evening at BAHR's house. Between 10:00 p.m. and 11:00 p.m., the victim went to sleep in BAHR's daughter's bedroom. Around 5:00 a.m. the next morning, the victim woke up with BAHR on top of her. The victim told BAHR numerous times to stop and to get off of her. Eventually, the victim was able to push BAHR off of her, get dressed, and leave BAHR's residence. Before leaving, the victim confronted BAHR about the sexual assault in the presence of the friend who was also staying at BAHR's home. BAHR admitted to having sexual intercourse with the victim during this confrontation and this admission was overheard by the friend.

The victim then left the residence and went home. She told her husband about the sexual assault, immediately reported the assault to the police, and then went to the hospital for a sexual assault examination.

BAHR was interviewed by law enforcement and despite the admission made by BAHR to the victim and overheard by the friend at BAHR's house, when confronted by the victim, BAHR denied that he had sex with the victim.

BAHR faces possible penalties of life in prison, a $250,000 fine and lifetime supervision.

The investigation was a cooperative effort between the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Bureau of Indian Affairs.

Updated January 14, 2015