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Press Release

McLaughlin Man Sentenced For Assaulting A Federal Officer

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

United States Attorney Brendan V. Johnson announced that a McLaughlin, South Dakota, man convicted of Assaulting a Federal Officer was sentenced on August 2, 2013, by U.S. District Judge Charles B. Kornmann.        

Verle Janis, a/k/a Verl Janis, age 32, was sentenced to 24 months of imprisonment, 3 years of supervised release, and a $100 special assessment to the Federal Crime Victims Fund. 

Janis was indicted by a federal grand jury on February 13, 2013.  He pled guilty to a Superseding Information on April 23, 2013. 

The conviction stems from an incident in January of 2013 when a BIA officer was dispatched to the Bear Soldier West housing project in McLaughlin.  Upon arrival, the officer observed several individuals in the residence and requested a warrant check.  He was advised that Janis was on probation with conditions that prohibited alcohol.  When the officer attempted to place the Defendant in handcuffs, he became uncooperative and refused to comply.  The officer removed his taser and the Defendant momentarily complied and was placed in the back seat of the patrol unit.

The officer then secured several personal items left in the house by the Defendant, and upon opening the back door to the patrol unit, was kicked in the shoulder by the Defendant.  The officer was forced to remove the Defendant from the patrol unit in order to place him in leg restraints.  While attempting to secure the Defendant, the officer was kicked in the leg several times.

The investigation was conducted by the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Standing Rock Agency.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Troy R. Morley prosecuted the case. 

Janis was immediately turned over to the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service to begin serving his sentence.

Updated June 22, 2015