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Press Release

Man Charged With Murder On The Meskwaki Nation Settlement

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

Jonathan Curtis Youngbear, age 20, from the Meskwaki Nation Settlement, Iowa, has been charged with murder in “Indian Country.”  The charge is contained in a Complaint filed on April 8, 2014, in United States District Court in Cedar Rapids. 

The Complaint alleges that, on or about February 24, 2014, Youngbear murdered a person on the Meskwaki Nation Settlement near Tama, Iowa.

If convicted, Youngbear faces a possible maximum sentence of life imprisonment, a $250,000 fine, and a $100 special assessment.

Youngbear appeared today in federal court in Cedar Rapids and was held without bond.  Youngbear’s next appearance for preliminary and detention hearings is set for April 14, 2014, at 1:00 p.m.

As with any criminal case, a charge is merely an accusation and a defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

In 2010, the Department of Justice launched an initiative making public safety in tribal communities a top priority.  The goal of the initiative is to help tribes build and sustain safe and secure communities across the country.  Information about the initiative is available at

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Peter Deegan and Anthony Morfitt and was investigated by the Meskwaki Nation Tribal Police, the Tama County Sheriff’s Office, the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Court file information is available at  The case file number is 14-mj-105.

Updated February 19, 2015