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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, May 17, 2021

Shiprock man sentenced to seven years in prison for voluntary manslaughter in Indian Country

            ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Patrick Yellowhair, 39, of Shiprock, New Mexico, and an enrolled member of the Navajo Nation, was sentenced on May 12 in federal court to seven and a half years in prison for voluntary manslaughter in Indian Country.

            Yellowhair pleaded guilty to the offense on Feb. 15, 2019.  According to the plea agreement, Yellowhair and the victim were drinking on the afternoon of Oct. 2, 2018, when they began fighting. The victim briefly left the home before returning later in the evening and the two resumed their quarreling. In the plea agreement, Yellowhair admitted to stabbing the victim in the neck and shoulder around midnight or in the early morning of Oct. 3. The killing occurred in San Juan County on the Navajo Nation. 

            Upon his release from prison, Yellowhair will be subject to three years of supervised release.

            The Farmington Resident Office of the FBI investigated this case with assistance from Navajo Nation Police and the Navajo Nation Criminal Investigations unit.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Allison Jaros is prosecuting the case.

Topic(s): 
Indian Country Law and Justice
Violent Crime
Press Release Number: 
21-92
Updated May 17, 2021