Another defendant in artifact theft found dead
A second defendant in the Indian artifact theft case was found dead last week.

Steven L. Shrader lived in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and was one of 24 people charged in connection with the theft and sale of Indian artifacts. He was found dead of an apparent suicide in Shabbona, Illinois.

Another defendant, James Redd of Utah, was found dead a day after Interior Secretary Ken Salazar announced the indictments on June 10. Republicans in Utah and residents of the town where most of the defendants live have criticized the federal government for its handling of the case.

Some Navajo Nation members who live in the area say non-Indians are using the case to draw suspicion towards Native people. “I hear people whispering in the grocery store now, saying bad things about Native Americans,” Marrietta Scott told The New York Times. ‘It’s all because of you.’ They’re blaming us.”

Redd was a doctor who attended many Native patients, a friend said. But Navajos said relations with non-Indians aren't strong.

"There’s a lot of prejudice," Aaron Keith said. "I don’t see what they’re complaining about with the handcuffs and everything," he said of the case. "That’s what happens when you get arrested."

Get the Story:
Santa Fe man linked to artifacts investigation found dead (AP 6/19)
Defendant in Artifacts Case Is Found Dead (The Albuquerque Journal 6/20)
Another suicide in American Indian artifacts looting case (The Salt Lake Tribune 6/20)
Latest court papers reveal grisly side of artifact digging (The Salt Lake Tribune 6/20)
Utah Town Unsettled by Doctor’s Suicide and an Inquiry on Indian Artifact Looting (The New York Times 6/21)

Relevant Documents:
DOI Press Release: Federal Agents Bust Ring of Antiquity Thieves Looting American Indian Sites for Priceless Treasures | DOJ Press Release: Arrests Made in Operation Targeting Network Selling Stolen Native American Artifacts | Remarks of Deputy Attorney General David W. Ogden at a Press Conference

Related Stories:
Letter: GOP hypocrisy on artifact theft case (6/22)
Dorgan won't investigate artifact theft case (6/19)
Editorial: Pandering in Utah artifact theft case (6/18)
Attorney General defends Indian artifact case (6/18)
Art dealer denies wrongdoing after artifact raid (6/18)
Utah town upset over Indian artifact theft case (6/17)
Column: 'Overkill' in Indian artifact theft case (6/17)
Agents searched New Mexico art dealer's home (6/17)
Utah town upset over Indian artifact theft case (6/17)
Utah GOP upset with Indian artifact theft case (6/15)
Tribes support prosecution of artifact theft case (6/12)
Defendant in DOI artifact theft case found dead (6/12)
Two dozen indicted for theft of Indian artifacts (6/11)
Salazar, EchoHawk in Utah for press conference (6/10)