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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of New Mexico

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Jicarilla Apache Man Sentenced to Prison for Federal Assault Conviction

Defendant Prosecuted as Part of Federal Initiative to Address the Epidemic Incidence of Violence Against Native Women

ALBUQUERQUE – Tyson Atole, 31, an enrolled member of the Jicarilla Apache Nation who resides in Dulce, N.M., was sentenced today in federal court in Albuquerque, N.M., for a conviction on assault charges arising out of two separate incidents during which he attacked Native American women. Atole will serve a 71-month term of imprisonment followed by three years of supervised release.


Atole was arrested in Feb. 2016, on an indictment charging him with assault with a dangerous weapon, a bottle, and assault resulting in serious bodily injury. Atole committed the crimes on May 2, 2015, on the Jicarilla Apache Indian Reservation in Rio Arriba County, N.M.


On May 16, 2016, Atole pled guilty to one count of the indictment charging him with assault with a dangerous weapon and admitted assaulting a woman with a bottle on May 2, 2015. Atole also plead guilty to a felony information charging him with assault resulting in serious bodily injury, and admitted assaulting another woman and causing her to sustain serious bodily injury by intentionally striking her with his fist on Jan. 28, 2016. Atole admitted committing both crimes on the Jicarilla Apache Indian Reservation.


This case was investigated by the Jicarilla Apache Tribal Police Department and was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph Spindle.


This case was brought as part of the Tribal Special Assistant U.S. Attorney (Tribal SAUSA) Pilot Project in the District of New Mexico, which is sponsored by the Justice Department’s Office on Violence Against Women under a grant administered by the Pueblo of Laguna. The Tribal SAUSA Pilot Project seeks to train tribal prosecutors in federal law, procedure and investigative techniques to increase the likelihood that every viable violent offense against Native American women is prosecuted in either federal court or tribal court, or both. The Tribal SAUSA Pilot Project was largely driven by input gathered from annual tribal consultations on violence against women, and is another step in the Justice Department's on-going efforts to increase engagement, coordination and action on public safety in tribal communities.

Indian Country Law and Justice
Violent Crime
Updated February 22, 2017