You are here

Justice News

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

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Investigation Concludes in the Deaths of Three Pine Ridge Men

No foul play in the May deaths of Juan Lamont, Tevin Tyon, and Tyrell Wilson

United States Attorney Randolph J. Seiler, the Rapid City Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Pine Ridge office of the Bureau of Indian Affairs-Office of Justice Services, and the Oglala Sioux Tribe Department of Public Safety have announced their findings following an extensive investigation into the recent disappearance and deaths of three adult men, all citizens of the Oglala Sioux Tribe and residents of the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.

Autopsy results and examination of the circumstances surrounding the disappearance, and later discovery of the men, firmly establishes their deaths resulted from an automobile accident.  Investigators have concluded the vehicle in which the three men were riding left the North side of BIA Rd. #41, also known as the “Chadron Road”, a few miles from Oglala, South Dakota, and plunged down a ravine approximately 60 feet deep where the car came to rest near a creek bed. 

All three men were found inside the vehicle amidst numerous open and closed containers of alcohol and other personal belongings.  Their physical injuries, as well as the crushed condition of the vehicle, prevented any hope of them being able to exit the vehicle if any of them lived beyond the impact at the bottom of the ravine.  It is very likely all three men died upon impact.  All three men were examined by a forensic pathologist who concluded each of them suffered multiple critical injuries to their backs and heads resulting in their deaths.  No signs of wounds consistent with bullets, knifes, or other weapons were detected.  Likewise, no damage to the vehicle was detected which would suggest any other conclusion other than that the vehicle sped off the road through a grassy field to the cliff where it went over and down into the ravine. 

This was a painstaking and difficult investigation for all involved.  Thanks go not only to the responding agencies listed above, but also to the Oglala Sioux Tribe Office of Attorney General, Pennington County Sheriff’s Office, Pennington County Search and Rescue, South Dakota Highway Patrol, Civilian Air Patrol, and the countless tribal citizens organized by the Oglala Sioux Tribe who volunteered many hours of their own time to search the Pine Ridge Reservation for the men.

Everyone involved sends their heartfelt condolences to the families of the three men on their grievous loss.

Updated July 9, 2016