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Press Release

Lower Brule Woman Sentenced for Voluntary Manslaughter

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of South Dakota

United States Attorney Alison J. Ramsdell announced that a Lower Brule, South Dakota, woman convicted of Voluntary Manslaughter was sentenced on June 13, 2022, by Chief Judge Roberto A. Lange, U.S. District Court.

Esther Flute, a/k/a, Esther Flute-Rencountre, age 61, was sentenced to five years and 11 months in federal prison, followed by three years of supervised release, and a special assessment to the Federal Crime Victims Fund in the amount of $100.

Flute was indicted by a federal grand jury on September 14, 2021.  She pled guilty on March 7, 2022.

The conviction stemmed from an incident that occurred on August 2, 2021, in Lower Brule.  Flute used two weapons to cause multiple wounds to the victim in an extended assault, which resulted in the victim’s death.

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Bureau of Indian Affairs – Office of Justice Services.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Troy R. Morley prosecuted the case.

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

Updated June 15, 2022

Violent Crime
Indian Country Law and Justice