Law

Fort Peck woman faces life sentence for death of 13-month-old girl






A panorama of Poplar, Montana, on the Fort Peck Reservation. Photo: Royalbroil

A Montana woman is pleading guilty in connection with the death of a 13-month-old girl on the Fort Peck Reservation.

Janelle Red Dog, 43, faces life in prison on a charge of second-degree murder. She is admitting she killed Kenzley Olson with "malice afterthought" in April 2016, according to court documents.

In an offer of proof filed last week, federal prosecutors said Red Dog struck Kenzley several times on the top of the girl's head. But she failed to seek medical care even after the girl fell unconscious, the document stated.

Red Dog finally decided to take Kenzley to the hospital on the following morning, according to the offer. But when the girl stopped breathing en route to the facility, she "disposed of her body by placing her into a duffel bag and throwing the duffel bag in an alley trash can. Red Dog then went home and went to sleep," prosecutors wrote.


Kenzley Olson was born on March 4, 2015. Photo: Clayton Stevenson Memorial Chapel

Kenzley was reported missing later in the day and her body was found on 20, 2016, after Red Dog confessed, according to the document.

Tribal leaders have blamed Kenzley's death, as well as a kidnapping of a four-year-old girl earlier in 2016, on rampant drug abuse on the reservation. According to prosecutors, Red Dog used methamphetamine while the girl was in her care.

Red Dog's plea agreement was filed on April 26. She is in court on Monday to admit her guilt, the Associated Press reported.

Read More on the Story:
Prosecutor: Woman put unconscious girl in bag, threw it away (AP 4/28)
Poplar woman charged with killing 1-year-old to plead guilty (The Great Falls Tribune 4/25)

Related Stories:
Montana woman charged for murder of one-year-old Fort Peck girl (September 15, 2016)
Fort Peck Tribes in 'crisis mode' over drugs and sex trafficking (May 18, 2016)
Leader of Fort Peck Tribes blames baby's death on drug abuse (April 27, 2016)
Fort Peck Tribes indict woman in connection with baby girl's death (April 22, 2016)
Suspect in custody for death of baby girl on Fort Peck Reservation (April 21, 2016)