Tim Leeds Havre Daily News firstname.lastname@example.org
Elwyn Floyd “Jay” Has The Eagle Jr. Of Dodson, 25, pleaded not guilty Tuesday in federal District Court in Great Falls to four charges of first degree murder. Has The Eagle was arrested after Calvin Sne l l , 6 9 , and Dore e n Manzaneres, 62, were stabbed to death at their residence on the Fort Belknap Indian Reservation Dec. 17. He is currently detained. According to a release from the office of U.S. District Attorney Bill Mercer, under federal law a suspect can be charged with first degree murder either for killing someone with malice aforethought and premeditation or for killing someone during the commission of another felony crime. In this case, Has The Eagle was charged with killing two people, both with premeditation and during the course of another felony, resulting in the four charges. After a neighbor of Snell and Manzanares saw a man enter their residence early in the morning and leave a few minutes later in their vehicle, law enforcement officials attempted to stop the vehicle. Has The Eagle led officers on a high-speed chase involving tribal law enforcement and Blaine County and Phillips County sheriff’s deputies that led from Lodge Pole into Phillips County and back onto the Fort Belknap Indian Reservation. Has The Eagle was apprehended after he barricaded himself in his home following the chase, and was checked over at the Indian Health Services at Fort Belknap before he was taken to custody at the jail in Chouteau County. Has The Eagle was out on release on both state charges and a federal sentence when the incident occurred. Has The Eagle was incarcerated the Hill County Detention Center starting on Sept. 16 on charges of attempted deliberate homicide, assault wi th a weapon and aggravated assault, on $50,000 bond. The charges stemmed from an incident on Aug. 30 in which Has The Eagle was accused of beating a man on the head with a rock near Dodson and leaving him for dead. Has The Eagle bonded out on Dec. 1. Has The Eagle also was out on release for a federal sentence on a count of assault with a weapon. He was indicted on that charge on June 17, 2004, and pleaded guilty in a plea agreement on Sept. 22, 2004. He was sentenced on Dec. 12, 2004, to 33 months with the Bureau of Prisons followed by three years of special release. Has The Eagle also appeared twice more in federal court for violating conditions of his release on that sentence, on Sept. 18, 2006, and on Feb. 19, 2008.