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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of South Dakota

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Eagle Butte Man Sentenced for Mailing Threatening Communications and Failure to Register as a Sex Offender

United States Attorney Randolph J. Seiler announced that an Eagle Butte, South Dakota, man convicted of Mailing Threatening Communications and Failure to Register as a Sex Offender was sentenced on October 24, 2016, by U.S. District Judge Roberto A. Lange.

Gaylen Paul Sampson, a/k/a Thurman Paul Sampson, age 41, was sentenced to 30 months in custody on each of the two offenses, with the sentences to run concurrently with each other.  Following his release from custody, Sampson will be on supervised release for 5 years on the Failure to Register as a Sex Offender conviction.  A special assessment of $100 to the Federal Crime Victims Fund was imposed in each of the two cases.

Sampson was indicted by federal grand juries in March of 2016, for Mailing Threatening Communications and Failure to Register as a Sex Offender.   He pled guilty to the charges in both indictments on August 8, 2016.

In 2003, Sampson was convicted of Aggravated Sexual Abuse of a Minor and sentenced to 151 months in custody.  While in custody for that conviction, Sampson began writing letters to the adult daughter of a former employer.  Over time, the letters became more concerning to the victim and more sexually explicit.  While out on supervised release after serving his custody sentence, Sampson wrote a letter to the victim in October of 2015.  The content of the letter prompted the Court to order Sampson not to enter onto the premises, travel past, or loiter near where the victim resides, and to have no correspondence, telephone contact, or communication with her through a third party.  Three days later, Sampson addressed a letter to the victim’s brother, in which he indicated he planned to kill the victim.

As a result of Sampson’s conviction for Aggravated Sexual Abuse of a Minor, he is required to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life.  In addition, he is required to update his registration within three business days of relocation or change in employment.  On March 25, 2013, Sampson transitioned from Leavenworth, Kansas, to Community Alternatives of the Black Hills (CABH), Rapid City, South Dakota, to serve the remainder of his prison sentence.  Sampson absconded from the facility and from supervision on April 10, 2013.  Sampson self-surrendered to law enforcement on April 23, 2013.  Sampson did not register his address during the 13 days he was on absconder status from CABH.    

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the United States Marshals Service.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Jay Miller prosecuted the cases.

Sampson was immediately turned over to the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service.

Indian Country Law and Justice
Updated October 27, 2016