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Press Release

McLaughlin Man Charged with Aggravated Sexual Abuse and Sexual Abuse of a Person Incapable of Consent

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

United States Attorney Randolph J. Seiler announced that a McLaughlin, South Dakota, man has been indicted by a federal grand jury for Aggravated Sexual Abuse and Sexual Abuse of a Person Incapable of Consent.

Brian Thunder Shield, age 18, was indicted on July 19, 2016.  He appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge William D. Gerdes on August 4, 2016, and pled not guilty to the Indictment.

The maximum penalty upon conviction is up to life in custody and/or a $750,000 fine, up to life of supervised release, and $300 to the Federal Crime Victims Fund.  Restitution may also be ordered.

The Indictment alleges that between October 20, 2015, and December 10, 2015, Thunder Shield knowingly engaged in and attempted to engage in sexual acts with two female relatives, one of them a minor.  Thunder Shield knew one of his victims was incapable of appraising the nature of the conduct, and was physically incapable of declining participation in and communicating her unwillingness to the sexual act.

The charges are merely accusations and Thunder Shield is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty. 

The investigation is being conducted by the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Troy R. Morley is prosecuting the case.   

Thunder Shield was released on bond pending trial.  A trial date has not been set.

Updated August 9, 2016

Indian Country Law and Justice