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Press Release

Ponca City Man Sentenced to Serve 15 Years in Federal Prison for Sexual Abuse of a Minor in Indian Country

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Oklahoma

OKLAHOMA CITY – Yesterday, JALEN WOLFELKINS HARRIS, 29, of Ponca City, Oklahoma, was sentenced to serve 15 years in federal prison for sexual abuse of a minor in Indian country, announced United States Attorney Robert J. Troester.

On January 18, 2022, a federal grand jury returned a one-count Indictment against Harris for sexual abuse.  The Indictment alleged Harris knowingly engaged in a sexual act with a victim who was physically incapable of declining participation in that sexual act.  On February 16, 2022, a Superseding Information charged Harris with one count of sexual abuse of a minor in Indian country.  On March 2, 2022, Harris pleaded guilty to the Superseding Information. 

At a sentencing hearing yesterday, U.S. District Judge Bernard M. Jones sentenced Harris to serve 180 months in federal prison.  In support of his sentence, Judge Jones cited, among other things, the serious nature of the offense and the fact that the victim was under Mr. Harris’s care.  Judge Jones also ordered that upon release from prison, Harris must serve five years of supervised release.  Additionally, upon his release from prison, Harris will be required to register as a sex offender.  Harris has been in federal custody since December 30, 2021.

This case was the result of an investigation by the FBI Oklahoma City Field Office, the Bureau of Indian Affairs, White Eagle Police Department, and the Ponca Tribe.  Assistant U.S. Attorney D.H. Dilbeck prosecuted this case.

Reference is made to court filings for further information.

Updated March 22, 2023