November 7, 2013 |

Augare pleads guilty in federal court to DUI

GREAT FALLS (AP) — Blackfeet tribal leader and state Sen. Shannon Augare has pleaded guilty in federal court to misdemeanor charges after he fled a sheriff's deputy who stopped him for drunken driving.

Augare entered the plea Thursday after U.S. Magistrate Judge Keith Strong ruled Augare's conviction on the same charges last month in tribal court did not end the federal case.

Strong ordered Augare to pay $1,250 in fines and to attend a treatment class.

Augare apologized and told the judge he accepted full responsibility.

His attorney, Joe McKay, says Augare does not plan to appeal the sentence or that imposed by the Blackfeet tribal court last month.

McKay says he respects Strong's ruling, but he believes the U.S. government's prosecution was an infringement on the sovereignty of the tribal justice system.

Reader Comments

(2)

dosomething writes:

I am all for native americans having their sovereignty and working towards self sufficiency. then along comes a piece of sludge like this who uses this whole tribal sovereignty stupidity for his own advantage and the rest of us have to live with it. it is disgusting and that blackfeet nation needs to do something about this guy. enough is enough.

snickers2013 writes:

The question of how to stop corruption on indian reservations has come up lately. Tribal Courts would be an ideal case study. Augare can select/appoint his own judge and get a lenient sentence. Myself, being a common tribal member would be subject to the harshest sentence for the same crime. How did his case get rushed along so quickly? Did he use his authority and title to get his way in tribal court? In my opinion, nepotism & favoritism are two main culprits aiding corruption on the rez.