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Press Release

Navajo man pleads guilty to voluntary manslaughter in Indian Country

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

            ALBUQERQUE, N.M. – Brandon Charley, 36, of Prewitt, New Mexico, and an enrolled member of the Navajo Nation, pleaded guilty on Sept. 8 to voluntary manslaughter in Indian Country.

            In the plea agreement, Charley admitted that on June 24, 2018, he intentionally shot and killed John Doe in Prewitt on the Navajo Nation reservation. Charley also admitted that when he shot the victim, he did not have an objectively reasonable belief that anyone was in imminent danger.

            Charley is currently in custody pending sentencing, which has not been scheduled yet. He faces up to 15 years in prison.

            The Gallup Residency Agency of the FBI, New Mexico State Police, McKinley Sheriff’s Office and Navajo Nation Department of Public Safety investigated this case. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Joseph M. Spindle and Letitia C. Simms are prosecuting the case.

Updated September 14, 2021

Indian Country Law and Justice
Violent Crime
Press Release Number: 21-184