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Press Release

Reserve man sentenced for shooting man in the face on Fort Peck Indian Reservation

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

GREAT FALLS—A Reserve man who admitted shooting another man in the face with a .22-caliber rifle on the Fort Peck Indian Reservation in 2018 was sentenced today to 46 months in prison and three years of supervised release, U.S. Attorney Kurt Alme said.

Jonathan Black Jr., 33, pleaded guilty in February to assault resulting in serious bodily injury.

Chief U.S. District Judge Brian M. Morris presided.

In court records filed in the case, the prosecution said the assault occurred on March 3, 2018 at a Reserve residence where Black lived with his sister and her children. Black called 911 in the evening and reported he had just shot someone in the face. Law enforcement arrived in the area and saw the victim driving away. An officer stopped the victim, who had facial wounds but the blood seemed to be clotting and there did not seem to be any immediate medical emergency. Because the victim appeared to be in stable condition, the officer placed him in his patrol car and began investigating the shooting.

At the residence, the defendant's sister and her children came out of the house. Black then came out and was arrested.

Meanwhile, an ambulance transported the victim to a nearby hospital. The victim ultimately went to Billings Clinic, where he was treated for facial injuries that included damage to his cheek and facial fractures. The victim had to have four teeth extracted because of the gunshot and had a bullet fragment at the base of his skull.

Black told law enforcement that he was cooking when he heard banging and the victim threatening his sister. Black thought the victim might kill his sister, so he retrieved a .22 caliber rifle from a closet. Black found the victim and his sister in the bathroom, so he kicked open the door, put the rifle in the victim's face and shot him. Black then placed the rifle on the kitchen table and called 911.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jessica Betley prosecuted the case, which was investigated by the FBI.









Clair Johnson Howard
Public Information Officer

Updated April 18, 2023

Indian Country Law and Justice