your internet resource on facebook on twitter on Google+ on soundcloud
phone: 202 630 8439
Health Coverage for American Indians and Alaska Natives
Advertise on Indianz.Com
Home > News > Headlines
Print   Subscribe
Native Sun News: Oglala Sioux leader clears impeachment vote

Filed Under: Law | National | Politics
More on: native sun news, oglala sioux, south dakota

Council representative from the Oglala District avoids impeachment attempt made by the Oglala Sioux Tribe Attorney General. Photo by Karin Eagle

Dull Knife survives impeachment attempt
Malfeasance and corruption charges dismissed
By Karin Eagle
Native Sun News Staff Writer

PINE RIDGE - Citing corrupt conduct, violation of oath of office and malfeasance, the Attorney General for the Oglala Sioux Tribe, Tate Win Means, made a failed attempt to obtain the impeachment of Barbara Dull Knife, Oglala District Representative on the tribal council.

In a special meeting of the Oglala Sioux Tribe (OST) to conduct the impeachment hearing on June 5 in the conference room at the Prairie Wind Casino, 13 council members met to hear the charges and the testimony against Dull Knife as well as in her defense.

Immediately after the meeting was called to order the council went into executive session to discuss the procedure that the hearing would follow. Means and Dull Knife were asked to remain in the session for the information to be given, as Means would be representing herself.

Dull Knife had requested the legal advisement of Steve Emery, an attorney from the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe, who remained in the session with Dull Knife.

Soon after the executive session was called, Emery emerged from the closed room and stated briefly that he would not be allowed to represent or advise Dull Knife, but due to confidentiality was unable to give the reasons given.

Once Council left executive session the hearing proceeded with opening statements beginning with Means. She stated that she was making the charges, filed May 2, not as the OST Attorney General but as a citizen with rights, based on Article VIII, Section 2 of the OST Constitution which deals with the removal of officers.

Mean’s charges came from her belief that Dull Knife acted out of procedure in seeking the removal of the Attorney General and that Dull Knife persisted with her course of action in seeking her termination even after she was informed that she was not following the prescribed procedures.

Means cited a committee meeting on April 8 where she witnessed Dull Knife making a motion to suspend Means based on complaints received from one of Dull Knife’s constituents. The constituent, Shirley Black Stone, had alleged that Means had acted outside of her scope of duties and against the best interest of the tribe.

Means stated that Dull Knife was told that a committee meeting was not the forum in which to bring the motion to request her suspension.

Dull Knife appeared frustrated at times during the meeting, stating repeatedly that she was not an attorney and did not quite understand all the charges brought against her. Her defense, which she stated many times during the hearing, was that she did “nothing wrong, and was just doing my job for my constituents.”

On April 9, according to the complaint brought by Means, Dull Knife once again sought to seek her suspension. At a meeting in Kyle that was meant to address an anti-bullying campaign, Means was told via telephone the Dull Knife spoke up again about suspending Means. Kyle representative Bernie Shot with Arrow asked Means pointedly who had informed her that this was done at the April 9 meeting.

Means responded that it was apparently in an executive session and that it was “a council member.” Shot with Arrow asked again who the council member was that told her she was being discussed in terms of her suspension.

“Garfield Steele,” responded Means. The actual matter according to Steele, who testified as a witness for Means, was that Dull Knife brought the matter up after the meeting was adjourned.

After several questions concerning the definition and meaning of malfeasance and corrupt conduct; attempts to provide character witnesses on behalf of Dull Knife, which were not allowed during the hearing; the hearing concluded with the council going into executive session.

Commenting to Native Sun News, Means verified that the OST has no formal procedures to outline exact ways to remove a political appointee, and the AG and tribal justices are political appointees.

When asked what would the process be Means stated that past AGs had been removed by council which set a precedence, but that nothing was in the tribal code. If complaints are made about the AG concerning court procedure they can follow the appeals process.

Complaints about the systemic procedures that the AG has to follow can be filed directly to the tribal council beginning with the filing of the complaint at the Secretary’s office. The same follows true for complaints about the AG personally. Means emphatically asserted that the procedure was always to file with the Secretary’s office in order to get the complaint formally heard on the Council floor.

Once the hearing reconvened following the deliberation of the tribal council, the verdict was announced that Dull Knife would not be impeached from office. The counts of malfeasance and corrupt conduct were dismissed, but the charge of violation of oath of office was accepted. Dull Knife will have to serve a suspension of two pay periods.

The vote to accept the hearing’s outcome was nine yes to five no. The nine yes votes were; Bear Killer, Cummings, Little White Man, LeBeau, Meeks, Provost, Shot with Arrow, Tapio and Cross. The five no votes were; Eagle Bull, Little, Rodriguez, Siers and Weston.

Immediately following the hearing, Dull Knife declined comment. Means immediately left the premises and could not be contacted for comment.

A contingency of supporters for Dull Knife, including Black Stone, the original complainant against Means, remained to vocalize their disappointment in the tribal council for even entertaining Mean’s complaint.

Pending further investigating, Native Sun News will follow up on the reports and news corresponding with these allegations, and any appeals being considered by Dull Knife.

(Contact Karin Eagle at

Copyright permission Native Sun News

Copyright © Indianz.Com
More headlines...
Stay Connected:
On Facebook

On Twitter

On Google+

On SoundCloud
Local Links:
Federal Register | Indian Gaming | Jobs & Notices | In The Hoop | Message Board
Latest News:
Navajo Nation President Russell Begaye endorses Hillary Clinton (10/21)
Twenty-Nine Palms Band disputes 'Trump, You're Fired' story (10/21)
Repatriation review committee announces additional meetings (10/21)
Native Sun News Today: Ping-pong continues in #NoDAPL case (10/21)
Lakota Country Times: 'Reel Jobs' school nurtures Lakota talent (10/21)
James Giago Davies: Drugs and crime overrun our reservations (10/21)
Dana Lone Hill: Becoming a grandmother is life's highest honor (10/21)
Misty Perkins: Indigenous voices are lost in colonial translation (10/21)
John Leguizamo: Who was 'mistreating indigenous people' first? (10/21)
Bureau of Land Management confirms repatriation for ancestor (10/21)
Cowlitz Tribe opposes coal export terminal on aboriginal lands (10/21)
Crow Tribe signs agreement to resolve long-running tax dispute (10/21)
National Indian Gaming Commission refutes online gaming claim (10/21)
Pinoleville Pomo Nation stays quiet on long-delayed casino plan (10/21)
Alaska tribes enter new era with first land-into-trust application (10/20)
Native leaders in Alaska endorse Hillary Clinton in historic move (10/20)
Bureau of Indian Affairs finishes update to model juvenile code (10/20)
Utah group aims to elevate Native issues in an unusual election (10/20)
Chemehuevi Tribe secures approval of HEARTH Act regulations (10/20)
Poarch Band of Creek Indians can't be sued for firing employee (10/20)
Native Sun News Today: Oglala veteran shot and killed by police (10/20)
Lakota Country Times: Founders of annual Spiritual Run honored (10/20)
Ivan Star Comes Out: Education system diminishes our people (10/20)
Brandon Ecoffey: It's business as usual for South Dakota's GOP (10/20)
Morgan Rodman: Federal agencies work to protect treaty rights (10/20)
Mary Annette Pember: First baby born at water protector camp (10/20)
Duane Yazzie: Spirituality prevails as #NoDAPL fight continues (10/20)
Standing Rock Sioux Tribe opens reservation to #NoDAPL camp (10/20)
Haskell University confirms president is still under investigation (10/20)
Agua Caliente Band back in federal court to defend water rights (10/20)
Saginaw Chippewa Tribe removes members amid per cap woes (10/20)
Ho-Chunk Nation moves forward with $33M expansion at casino (10/20)
Cowlitz Tribe announces more executives for fast-rising casino (10/20)
Wilton Rancheria continues to make progress on casino project (10/20)
Agency shifts course as ancient remains slated for repatriation (10/19)
Navajo Nation opposes bill that reduces share of trust revenues (10/19)
Doug George-Kanentiio: A voice for residential school survivors (10/19)
Native Sun News Today: LNI hosts girls volleyball tournament (10/19)
Lakota Country Times: Oglala Sioux Tribe voters send message (10/19)
Editorial: Republicans in South Dakota embrace Monster Trump (10/19)
Vi Waln: Water protector camps overflow with spiritual energy (10/19)
more headlines...

Home | Arts & Entertainment | Business | Canada | Cobell Lawsuit | Education | Environment | Federal Recognition | Federal Register | Forum | Health | Humor | Indian Gaming | Indian Trust | Jack Abramoff Scandal | Jobs & Notices | Law | National | News | Opinion | Politics | Sports | Technology | World

Indianz.Com Terms of Service | Indianz.Com Privacy Policy
About Indianz.Com | Advertise on Indianz.Com

Indianz.Com is a product of Noble Savage Media, LLC and Ho-Chunk, Inc.