More: inmates

Native Sun News Today: Seven Directions Program has roots in Lakota culture
Native Sun News Today: Seven Directions Program has roots in Lakota culture (March 10, 2020)

Traditional healers from the Pine Ridge Reservation are helping keep drug defendants out of prison in South Dakota.


Indian inmate files opening brief in Supreme Court sovereignty case
Indian inmate files opening brief in Supreme Court sovereignty case (February 5, 2020)

Jimcy McGirt was sentenced to 500 years in prison, as well as life without parole, by the state of Oklahoma. His fate will be decided by the nation's highest court.


Waiting on the Supreme Court to return eastern Oklahoma to Indigenous nations
Waiting on the Supreme Court to return eastern Oklahoma to Indigenous nations (October 9, 2019)

All of Indian Country is waiting on the U.S. Supreme Court to do what is morally and legally right.


Native Sun News Today: Lakota inmate awaits another chance for freedom
Native Sun News Today: Lakota inmate awaits another chance for freedom (July 9, 2019)

An Oglala Sioux man wants his freedom after serving nearly 30 years in the South Dakota State penitentiary system.


Cronkite News: Repeat prisoners contribute to high incarceration rate in Arizona
Cronkite News: Repeat prisoners contribute to high incarceration rate in Arizona (April 17, 2019)

Officials and experts are exploring a vexing question about the revolving bars of the criminal justice system: How can we stop people from ending back in prison?


Native Sun News Today: Community comes together to talk about Indian inmates
Native Sun News Today: Community comes together to talk about Indian inmates (March 20, 2019)

In South Dakota, 33 percent of the male prison population and 63 percent of the female prison population is Native American.


Native Sun News Today: Bill aims to address addiction and crime in South Dakota
Native Sun News Today: Bill aims to address addiction and crime in South Dakota (March 5, 2019)

South Dakota is the only state in the union that brands drug addicted individuals with a felony conviction through ingestion.


Native Sun News Today: Former inmate connected with his culture behind bars
Native Sun News Today: Former inmate connected with his culture behind bars (February 18, 2019)

'Before going to prison, I was like any other youth raised in the violence and poverty, the alcohol and addiction. I was lost.'


Native Sun News Today Editorial: South Dakotans love their Indians
Native Sun News Today Editorial: South Dakotans love their Indians (February 8, 2019)

South Dakota has to be the kindest, most thoughtful state when it comes to the treatment of its American Indian prison population.


'I have paid my debt to society': Lakota woman locked up on first offense
'I have paid my debt to society': Lakota woman locked up on first offense (July 20, 2018)

After spending the past 21 years behind bars for dealing meth, LaVonne Roach is seeking clemency.


Native Sun News Today: Sudden death of Indian inmate saves lives of others
Native Sun News Today: Sudden death of Indian inmate saves lives of others (January 12, 2018)

On Christmas Eve, an Indian inmate was declared brain dead after suffering from a brain aneurysm.


Federal judge who questioned 'Indian blood' and tribal courts resigns due to sexual harassment
Federal judge who questioned 'Indian blood' and tribal courts resigns due to sexual harassment (December 18, 2017)

A prominent federal judge who has questioned whether certain criminal laws should be based on 'Indian blood' and whether tribal courts are fair is resigning after being repeatedly accused of sexual harassment.


Native Sun News Today: Indian inmates urged to reconnect to their tribal heritages
Native Sun News Today: Indian inmates urged to reconnect to their tribal heritages (October 25, 2017)

Am anti-meth event, spiritual conference and powwow brought several Lakota leaders to the medium-maximum prison in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.


Native Sun News Today: Native Americans over-represented in county jail population
Native Sun News Today: Native Americans over-represented in county jail population (October 17, 2017)

Native Americans only make up about 10 percent of Pennington County’s population but 51 percent of the jail population in the South Dakota county.


Appeals court hears slew of Indian cases amid focus on Supreme Court nominee
Appeals court hears slew of Indian cases amid focus on Supreme Court nominee (March 23, 2017)

Wednesday was just another busy day for Neil Gorsuch and the federal appeals court where he has served as a judge for a decade.


Native Sun News Today: Northern Cheyenne elders get heating help from unique program
Native Sun News Today: Northern Cheyenne elders get heating help from unique program (November 11, 2016)

Elders on the Northern Cheyenne Reservation can receive free wood from a most unlikely source – the Bureau of Indian Affairs inmate work program.


Native Sun News: Group provides housing to families of inmates
Native Sun News: Group provides housing to families of inmates (May 12, 2016)

Family Connection’s hospitality houses provide housing and facilities to support visiting families who may not be able to afford a local hotel/motel room or have family in Sioux Falls to stay during prison visits.


Native Sun News: Indian inmates segregated for ceremonial tobacco use
Native Sun News: Indian inmates segregated for ceremonial tobacco use (April 22, 2016)

Three Indian inmates were placed into the segregated housing unit at the Mike Durfee State Prison in Springfield, South Dakota, for violations related to botanicals used during ceremonies in the minimum security prison.


Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes help inmates reintegrate
Law
Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes help inmates reintegrate (February 4, 2016)

The Flathead Reservation Reentry program helps former inmates with employment, housing, transportation and other issues.


Supreme Court again opens door for juvenile murder defendants
Supreme Court again opens door for juvenile murder defendants (January 26, 2016)

The decision came as President Barack Obama banned the placement of juvenile offenders in solitary confinement in federal prisons.


Stu Whitney: Rita Means still fighting for justice for Indian inmates
Stu Whitney: Rita Means still fighting for justice for Indian inmates (January 25, 2016)

A longtime advocate of fair sentencing and equal treatment for Native prisoners in South Dakota, Rita Means knows better than most how even the smallest of gestures can work wonders within these walls.


Court sides with Indian inmates over closure of sweat lodge
Law
Court sides with Indian inmates over closure of sweat lodge (November 24, 2015)

The Massachusetts Department of Corrections shut down a sweat lodge after just six months due to alleged health risks.


Native Sun News: Great Plains tribes address issues of inmates
Native Sun News: Great Plains tribes address issues of inmates (November 2, 2015)

As a result of the recent articles on Native Sun News’ visits to the state penitentiary, the newspaper was asked to present information gained to the Great Plains Tribal Chairman’s Association’s meeting in Rapid City.


Native Sun News: Inmates express concerns at prison pow wow
Native Sun News: Inmates express concerns at prison pow wow (October 22, 2015)

The pow wow at the Jameson Annex in the South Dakota State Penitentiary in Sioux Falls returned to the gymnasium on October 17 after being banned by prison officials in recent years.


Inmate files lawsuits in search of Eastern Cherokee citizenship
Law
Inmate files lawsuits in search of Eastern Cherokee citizenship (October 13, 2015)

Robert Sioleski, 58, claims his grandmother was Cherokee and wants membership in order to participate in ceremonies in prison.


Native Sun News: South Dakota prison to host October powwow
Native Sun News: South Dakota prison to host October powwow (September 15, 2015)

The LDN (Lakota, Dakota, Nakota) Spiritual Group inside the South Dakota State Prison system is looking for presenters and participants for its cultural conference and powwow.


Native Sun News: Lakota inmate seeks freedom after 35 years
Native Sun News: Lakota inmate seeks freedom after 35 years (September 14, 2015)

The law does not forgive a person who is in a blackout during the commitment of a crime in South Dakota, especially when the victim is viciously beaten to death.


Native Sun News: Drum group returns to county detention facility
Native Sun News: Drum group returns to county detention facility (August 24, 2015)

Collaborative efforts by the Sheriff’s Office, inmates, and community volunteer advocates have succeeded in bringing the traditional Native American music back to the Pennington County Jail in South Dakota.


Indian inmates in Alabama lose decision over long hair policy
Indian inmates in Alabama lose decision over long hair policy (August 10, 2015)

The long-running dispute could be headed back to the Supreme Court.


Native Sun News: Powwow returns to South Dakota prison
Native Sun News: Powwow returns to South Dakota prison (July 22, 2015)

Native American inmates in the state penitentiary were able to host invited family members to their first quarterly powwow since the summer of 2014.


Standing Rock Sioux Tribe seeks to reduce rate of recidivism
Law
Standing Rock Sioux Tribe seeks to reduce rate of recidivism (July 22, 2015)

The tribe is working with federal officials in two states to help convicts re-enter society.


Native Sun News: Group aims to reduce number of Native inmates
Native Sun News: Group aims to reduce number of Native inmates (July 8, 2015)

In May, Pennington County was the recipient of a $150,000 grant awarded by the MacArthur Foundation as part of a larger initiative to examine, assess, and institute changes in local jails across the country.


Law Article: Indian inmate wins religious rights suit in Wisconsin
Law
Law Article: Indian inmate wins religious rights suit in Wisconsin (May 27, 2015)

Prisoner Schlemm is a member of the Navajo Tribe and has been imprisoned in Wisconsin since 1999.


Tribal traditions put to use for battle against substance abuse
Tribal traditions put to use for battle against substance abuse (May 20, 2015)

Sweat lodges are a part of the recovery program at Native American Connections in Phoenix, Arizona.


Appeals court sides with Indian inmate in religious rights case
Appeals court sides with Indian inmate in religious rights case (April 22, 2015)

David Schlemm, a member of the Navajo Nation, has won the right to wear a headband and eat venison during times of ceremony while his case proceeds.


8th Circuit rules against Indian inmate in religious rights case
8th Circuit rules against Indian inmate in religious rights case (January 27, 2015)

Wesley Eugene Brooks said a chemical dependency treatment program conflicted with his beliefs.


Supreme Court orders another decision in Indian inmates' case
Supreme Court orders another decision in Indian inmates' case (January 26, 2015)

Indian inmates in Alabama are being prevented from growing long hair.


NARF: Supreme Court decision impacts rights of Indian inmates
Law
NARF: Supreme Court decision impacts rights of Indian inmates (January 23, 2015)

An update on a religious rights case that affects Indian inmates.


Cherokee Nation program keeps former inmates out of prison
Cherokee Nation program keeps former inmates out of prison (July 28, 2014)

Daryl Legg, who served three prison sentences, is helping Indian inmates with education and job training.


Gabe Galanda: Defending the religious rights of Indian inmates
Gabe Galanda: Defending the religious rights of Indian inmates (May 29, 2014)

Attorney Gabe Galanda explains why Huy was formed to protect the religious rights of Indian inmates.


Law Article: Summary of recent court rulings in Indian Country
Law
Law Article: Summary of recent court rulings in Indian Country (May 12, 2014)

Attorneys discuss recent federal court decisions affecting tribes and individual Indians.


Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate signs parole agreement with state
Law
Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate signs parole agreement with state (May 6, 2014)

The Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate signed an agreement to allow tribal members to serve their parole on the reservation.


Native Sun News: Court backs Indian inmates over tobacco use
Native Sun News: Court backs Indian inmates over tobacco use (May 5, 2014)

On Friday, April 25, the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a ruling of Judge Karen Schreier that the South Dakota Department of Corrections cannot ban tobacco from Native American inmates using it for religious purposes.


8th Circuit sides with Indian inmates in tobacco use lawsuit
8th Circuit sides with Indian inmates in tobacco use lawsuit (April 28, 2014)

The 8th Circuit Court of Appeals sided with Indian inmates in a dispute over tobacco use.


Indiana settles lawsuit over religious rights of Indian inmates
Law
Indiana settles lawsuit over religious rights of Indian inmates (April 24, 2014)

The Indiana Department of Corrections has reached a settlement with Indian inmates who said their religious rights were being violated.


Native Sun News: Indian inmates see religious rights suppressed
Native Sun News: Indian inmates see religious rights suppressed (March 4, 2014)

In response to the continued denial of religious freedoms to Native American prisoners in multiple states across the country, several prominent advocacy groups have approached the United Nations Human Rights Committee with a complaint.


Editorial: Too many Native people in Montana prison system
Editorial: Too many Native people in Montana prison system (January 6, 2014)

Native American men and women are over-represented in the prison system in Montana.


County jail  adds sweat lodge for large Indian inmate population
Law
County jail adds sweat lodge for large Indian inmate population (October 23, 2013)

The jail in Coconino County, Arizona, is building a new sweat lodge for its large Indian inmate population.


Native Sun News:  Federal sentencing impacts Indian inmates
Native Sun News: Federal sentencing impacts Indian inmates (August 22, 2013)

In a speech to the American Bar Association last week, United States Attorney General, Eric Holder, introduced a dramatically different approach to how the federal government will now prosecute and sentence non-violent drug offenders.


Editorial: Protecting all prison inmates from sexual assault
Editorial: Protecting all prison inmates from sexual assault (May 27, 2013)

The New York Times on a report Department of Justice report which found that a Bureau of Indian Affairs detention facility on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota had...


BIA detention facility had highest sexual misconduct rate
Law
BIA detention facility had highest sexual misconduct rate (May 17, 2013)

A Bureau of Indian Affairs detention facility on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota had the highest rate of staff sexual misconduct than any other in the U.S., according...


Andrew  Yellowbear: Indian inmates   being ignored in state
Andrew Yellowbear: Indian inmates being ignored in state (March 21, 2013)

Andrew Yellowbear Jr., a member of the Northern Arapaho Tribe of Wyoming who has been sentenced to life in prison for murdering his 22-month-old daughter, says Indian inmates are being...


Native Sun News: Prison guards watched as Indian inmate  died
Native Sun News: Prison guards watched as Indian inmate died (March 14, 2013)

The following story was written and reported by Brandon Ecoffey, Native Sun News Staff Writer. All content © Native Sun News. Tony Lester Indian inmate bled to death while officers...


Native Sun News: Indian inmates   in South Dakota win lawsuit
Native Sun News: Indian inmates in South Dakota win lawsuit (February 7, 2013)

The following story was written and reported by Evelyn Red Lodge, Native Sun News Correspondent. All content © Native Sun News. Inmates win tobacco lawsuit By Evelyn Red Lodge Native...


Indian inmates at odds with state over tobacco at ceremonies
Law
Indian inmates at odds with state over tobacco at ceremonies (November 29, 2012)

Indian inmates in South Dakota are at odds with state corrections officials over the use of tobacco in ceremonies. The Native American Council of Tribes, a group that holds ceremonies...


Jonathan Larrabee: Criminal prosecution violates     treaty clause
Jonathan Larrabee: Criminal prosecution violates treaty clause (October 5, 2012)

"This is to correct a century-plus-long legal error that has been and continues to be perpetuated upon the Great Sioux Nation and all Indians alike. The lesson is that all...


Indian inmates in South Dakota win religious freedom lawsuit
Law
Indian inmates in South Dakota win religious freedom lawsuit (September 20, 2012)

In a lawsuit filed by Indian inmates, a federal judge in South Dakota struck down the state's ban on the use of tobacco in religious ceremonies. The Native American Council...


CNN: American Indians overrepresented in prison populations
CNN: American Indians overrepresented in prison populations (August 13, 2012)

"Whoever wins the 2012 U.S. presidential election faces multiple, serious problems in the U.S. prison system. One issue is the soaring prison population and its rising costs; but another is...


Gabe Galanda: Indian inmates get their day for religious freedom
Gabe Galanda: Indian inmates get their day for religious freedom (July 5, 2012)

"Despite the barbwire fenced entryway, security pat downs, and presence of several armed corrections officers, a sense of freedom filled one corner of the Washington State Penitentiary in Walla Walla...


Indian inmates welcome presence of children at their powwows
Indian inmates welcome presence of children at their powwows (May 29, 2012)

The Washington Department of Corrections now allows children to attend powwows and other ceremonial events at state prisons. Up until about five years ago, minors could attend powwows at some...