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Press Release

Mescalero Apache Man Pleads Guilty to Federal Assault Charge

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

ALBUQUERQUE – Sheridan Gerard Lester, 24, a member of the Mescalero Apache Nation, pleaded guilty this afternoon to an assault charge in federal court in Las Cruces, N.M.  Under the terms of his plea agreement, Lester will be sentenced to 21 months in prison followed by a term of supervised release to be determined by the court.

Lester was arrested in Aug. 2013, based on a criminal complaint alleging assault with a dangerous weapon and assault resulting in serious bodily injury.  Today Lester entered a guilty plea to a felony information charging him with assault resulting in serious bodily injury and admitted assaulting another Mescalero Apache man on Nov. 27, 2012, at a location within the Mescalero Apache Reservation.

According to the criminal complaint, Lester assaulted the victim on Nov. 27, 2012, at Lester’s residence, which is located within the Mescalero Apache Reservation.  Lester was intoxicated when he began quarreling with the victim and began attacking the victim with his fists.  In his plea agreement, Lester admitted intentionally striking the victim about the body and in the face, causing the victim to suffer serious injuries.

Lester was in tribal custody for 302 days based on a tribal conviction related to the assault charged in the federal case before he was transferred to federal custody.  Lester remains in federal custody pending his sentencing hearing, which has yet to be scheduled.  Under the terms of his plea agreement, Lester will receive credit for the 302 days spent in tribal custody when he is sentenced.

This case was investigated by the Las Cruces office of the FBI and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Aaron O. Jordan of the U .S. Attorney’s Las Cruces Branch Office.

Updated January 26, 2015