Law | Politics

Blackfeet Nation leader willing to plead guilty to federal charges

Montana Sen. Shannon Augare (D). Photo Montana Legislature

A council member for the Blackfeet Nation of Montana says he's willing to plead guilty to federal charges in order to prevent a trial.

Shannon Augare, who also serves as a state senator, was charged in connection with a drunken driving incident on the reservation. He claims the federal government lacks jurisdiction but he plans to plead guilty if a judge won't dismiss the case.

Augare has already pleaded guilty to similar charges in tribal court. But the federal courts have ruled that Indian defendants can be tried in tribal and federal court for the same crime because tribes are separate sovereigns.

Get the Story:
Lawyer: Augare to plead guilty if fed charges stay (AP 11/5)
Feds lack jurisdiction to try Blackfeet leader, Augare attorney says (AP 11/4)

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