Department of Justice Court Decisions Roundup – October 31 to November 4
The United States Department of Justice released the court decisions of the following cases that took place from October 31 to November 4.
Spirit Lake Man Guilty of Attempted Aggravated Sexual Abuse
U.S. Attorney for the District of North Dakota Timothy Q. Purdon announced that on November 3, 2011, Joseph Brown Jr. of St. Michael, North Dakota, was found guilty by a federal jury of attempted aggravated sexual abuse following a three-day trial.
Brown, 59, was found guilty of attempting to rape a young woman while using force. The incident occurred on August 18, 2009, at Brown’s rural farm on the Spirit Lake Indian Reservation.
The charge of attempted aggravated sexual abuse carries a statutory maximum penalty of life imprisonment. Sentencing for Brown has been scheduled for January 13, 2012, in U.S. District Court in Grand Forks, North Dakota.
Bonners Ferry Woman Pleads Guilty
U.S. Attorney for the District of Idaho Wendy J. Olson announced that Twyla Dawn Basil, 33, of Bonners Ferry, Idaho, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court in Coeur d'Alene, to misprision of a felony.
According to the plea agreement, Basil acted as a lookout for individuals who went into a home and stole guns. The case was charged in federal court because the crime occurred on tribal land and the victim and Basil are both members of the Kootenai Tribe.
The charge of misprision of a felony carries a maximum punishment of up to three years in prison, a fine up to $250,000, and up to one year of supervised release. Sentencing is set for January 31, 2012.
Oklahoma Man Sentenced to Five Years Imprisonment for Sexually Abusing a Minor on the grounds of KAFB
U.S. Attorney for the District of New Mexico Kenneth J. Gonzales announced that Clifton Eugene Johnson, 67, of Whiteboro, Oklahoma, was sentenced to five years imprisonment to be followed by a lifetime of supervised release for sexually abusing a minor.
Johnson initially was charged on March 25, 2010 in a criminal complaint with sexually abusing a child on the grounds of Kirtland Air Force Base (KAFB) on March 24, 2010. He has been in federal custody since that time.
Johnson pleaded guilty on May 2, 2011. He was fined $5,000.00, and will be required to register as a sex offender when he completes his prison sentence.
Shiprock Man Sentenced to 33 Months for Federal Assault Conviction
U.S. Attorney for the District of New Mexico Kenneth J. Gonzales announced that Matthew Archie Johnson, 25, was sentenced to 33 months in prison for his conviction on an assault offense.
Johnson pleaded guilty on June 14, 2011 to an indictment charging him with assault resulting in serious bodily injury.
According to court records, Johnson was driving while under the influence of alcohol on the Navajo Indian Reservation on September 17, 2010, when he ran a stop sign and collided with his victim's vehicle.
Johnson will be on supervised release for three years after completing his prison sentence. Johnson, an enrolled member of the Navajo Nation who resides in Shiprock, New Mexico, has been in federal custody since his arrest on September 22, 2010.
Rapid City Woman Sentenced for Assaulting a Federal Officer
U.S. Attorney for the District of South Dakota Brendan V. Johnson announced that a Rapid City woman charged with Assaulting a Federal Officer was sentenced on October 24, 2011.
In September 2010, Delmarie L. Wounded Head a/k/a Delmarie Tallman, 27, struck an Oglala Sioux Tribe law enforcement officer with a metal bar after the officer responded to a domestic complaint.
Wounded Head pleaded guilty to the offense on July 15, 2011. She was sentenced to one year in prison, one year of supervised release, and a $25 victim assessment.
Oglala Man Sentenced for Voluntary Manslaughter
U.S. Attorney for the District of South Dakota Brendan V. Johnson announced that an Oglala man charged with Voluntary Manslaughter was sentenced on October 24, 2011.
On January 30, 2011, near Oglala, Beau Dean Black Smith, 20, stabbed a man in the chest after the two got into a physical fight, killing him.
He was indicted by a federal grand jury on February 15, 2011 and pleaded guilty on July 18, 2011. He was sentenced to 87 months' in prison, three years of supervised release, and a $100 victim assessment.
Pine Ridge Man Convicted by Jury of Assaulting a Man
U.S. Attorney for the District of South Dakota Brendan V. Johnson announced that Wendell Yellow Bull was convicted by a jury in federal court on one count of Assault Resulting in Serious Bodily Injury on October 26, 2011.
Yellow Bull, 36, was indicted in May 2011 after an investigation conducted by the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the Oglala Sioux Tribe-Department of Public Safety. The maximum penalty upon conviction is 10 years’ in prison and/or a $250,000 fine.
Johnson said the charge relates to an incident occurring on December 4, 2010, near Pine Ridge, when Yellow Bull stabbed a man after the two had an argument.
Mission Man and Woman Plead Guilty to Marijuana Charges
U.S. Attorney for the District of South Dakota Brendan V. Johnson announced that Arlene Claire Chauncey, 26, and Michael Waylon Brave, 32, both of Mission, South Dakota, pleaded guilty to a Superseding Information on October 20, 2011.
Chauncey pleaded guilty to Possession with Intent to Distribute Marijuana and Aiding and Abetting.
Brave pleaded guilty to Possession of Marijuana.
On February 20, 2010, the Rosebud Sioux Tribe Police Department executed a search warrant on the defendants’ residence. Both Chauncey and Brave pleaded guilty to knowingly and intentionally possessing at least 250 grams, but less than one kilogram, of marijuana.
The maximum penalty upon conviction for Chauncey is five years in custody, a $250,000 fine, or both and two years up to life on supervised release.
The maximum penalty for Brave is not more than one year in custody, a minimum fine of $1,000 but not more than $100,000, or both, and no more than one year of supervised release. A sentencing date was set for December 6, 2011.
Defendant Pleads Guilty to Attempting to Kill Three Warm Springs Police Officers
U.S. Attorney for the District of Oregon S. Amanda Marshall announced that Waylon McKie Weaselhead, 23, of the Warm Springs Indian Reservation, pleaded guilty on November 1, 2011 to three counts of assault with intent to commit murder.
On May 20, 2010, Warm Springs police officers received information that Madras police officers were in pursuit of a white Ford Explorer and that people inside the vehicle had shot at the officers.
During the high-speed chase, Weaselhead, the front seat passenger in the Explorer, leaned out the window with a rifle and shot at the pursuing officers. Aldo Antunez, who was previously prosecuted in both state and federal court, was driving the suspect vehicle. Despite a large-scale manhunt, involving law enforcement officers from a variety of jurisdictions, the suspects were able to elude the police.
On June 25, 2010, Waylon Weaselhead was arrested. The maximum sentence the Court can impose is 20 years in prison, a fine of $250,000, and three years of supervised release.
Sentencing is scheduled for December 7, 2011.
Thomas Montey Monroe Found Guilty in U.S. Federal Court
U.S. Attorney for the District of Montana Mike Cotter announced that on October 27, 2011, in Great Falls, Thomas Montey Monroe, 52, of Browning, Montana, and an enrolled member of the Blackfeet Tribe, was found guilty of assault resulting in serious bodily injury.
On March 18, 2011 Monroe pushed an unnamed female down the stairs and kicked her in the face.
Sentencing is set for March 5, 2012. He is currently detained. Monroe faces possible penalties of ten years in prison, a $250,000 fine and three years supervised release.
Rosanna Lynn Walks Pleads Guilty in U.S. Federal Court
U.S. Attorney for the District of Montana Mike Cotter announced that during a federal court session in Billings on November 2, 2011, Rosanna Lynn Walks, 37, of Crow Agency, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine.
The investigation of Walks began when, on two separate occasions within the exterior boundaries of the Crow Indian Reservation, a Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) confidential source purchased methamphetamine from Walks.
Sentencing has been set for February 1, 2012. Walks faces possible penalties of a mandatory minimum of five years in prison and could be sentenced to 40 years, a $2 million fine and four years supervised release.
Navajo Woman Sentenced for Embezzling Alamo Navajo School Board Funds
U.S. Attorney for the District of New Mexico Kenneth J. Gonzales announced that Jennifer Secatero, 34, was sentenced to three years probation for her conviction for embezzling funds belonging to an Indian tribal organization.
She pleaded guilty to a crime charging her with embezzlement and theft of more than $18,000 from an Indian tribal organization on July 19, 2011.
Secatero, an enrolled member of the Navajo Nation who now resides in Rio Rancho, New Mexico, also was ordered to pay $25,000 in restitution to the Alamo Navajo School Board (ANSB), the victim of her criminal activity.
St. Francis Man Pleaded Guilty to Abusive Sexual Contact
U.S. Attorney for the District of South Dakota Brendan V. Johnson announced that Israel A. Left Hand Bull, 27, of St. Francis, South Dakota pleaded guilty to Abusive Sexual Contact on November 1, 2011. Left Hand Bull was charged with sexually assaulting a victim on June 19, 2010.
The maximum penalty upon conviction is three years imprisonment, a $250,000 fine, or both. A presentence investigation was ordered, and a sentencing date was set for January 30, 2012. The defendant was remanded to the custody of the United States Marshal pending sentencing.
Nebraska Woman Pleads Guilty to Drug Charges
U.S. Attorney for the District of South Dakota Brendan V. Johnson announced that Tamara His Blue Horse, 30, pleaded guilty to an indictment that charged conspiracy to distribute 50 grams or more of methamphetamine on November 2, 2011.
The charges stem from the sale of methamphetamine on the Rosebud Indian Reservation in 2010.
The offense carries a minimum sentence of five years, and a maximum of 40 years in prison. His Blue Horse was remanded to the custody of the U.S. Marshal pending sentencing.
Navajo Man from Arizona Sentenced to 25 Years for Federal Assault and Firearms Conviction
U.S. Attorney for the District of New Mexico Kenneth J. Gonzales announced that William Belin, 58, was sentenced to 25 years imprisonment for his conviction on assault and firearms offenses.
On July 7, 2010, Belin shot his 35-year-old girlfriend. The shooting took place in the victim’s home located in Shiprock, New Mexico, within the exterior boundaries of the Navajo Nation.
The victim survived the shooting after receiving treatment for the gunshot wound and other injuries she sustained during the assault.
Belin was convicted by a federal jury on July 22, 2011. Belin, an enrolled member of the Navajo Nation from Tee Nos Pos, Arizona, will be on supervised release for three years after completing his prison sentence. Belin also was ordered to pay $1,120.05 in restitution to the State of New Mexico Crime Victims Reparation Commission.
Mission Man Charged with Aggravated Sexual Abuse and Sexual Abuse of a Minor
U.S. Attorney for the District of South Dakota Brendan V. Johnson announced that a Mission, South Dakota, man has been indicted by a federal grand jury for aggravated sexual abuse and sexual abuse of a Minor.
Robert Romero, 34, was indicted by a federal grand jury on September 20, 2011. He appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Mark A. Moreno on November 2, 2011, and pleaded not guilty to the indictment. The maximum penalty upon conviction is life in custody, a $250,000 fine, or both. Restitution may also be ordered.
Former Ponca Tribe Accountant Sentenced for Embezzling from Tribe
Thomasine Arkeketa, 57, from Ponca City, Oklahoma, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Joe Heaton to serve 24 months’ probation, with 180 days of home detention and electronic monitoring, for embezzling funds from the Ponca Tribe of Oklahoma, announced Sanford C. Coats, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Oklahoma.
In addition, Judge Heaton ordered that Arkeketa pay restitution to the tribe in the amount of $27,125.89.
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