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Jackley Defending Checkpoint Runner and Noem’s Anti-Tribal Sovereignty Position

The lawyer who goes to court to try establishing Governor Kristi Noem’s doctrine of subjecting tribal sovereignty to state authority will not be Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg. Take heart, Indian-haters: Marty Jackley is on the job!

Wayne Hepper, cattle raiser, checkpoint runner, Jackley client
Wayne Hepper, cattle raiser, checkpoint runner, Jackley client

Jackley will not be carrying Noem’s feckless Trump-pandering threat to federal court. Instead, Jackley is representing Wayne Hepper of Kenel, who around 9:45 p.m. on April 8, stopped at the Cheyenne Sioux River Tribe checkpoint west of Dupree on U.S. Highway 212, was told by tribal checkers that he could not cross the reservation because he had North Dakota plates on his truck, and then drove on in defiance of the tribal authorities. He only stopped when Dewey County Deputy Sheriff Dan Assman caught up with him. Hepper now faces charges of eluding and failure to stop.

Jackley contends nobody has to take orders from Indian cops:

The person at the checkpoint was a tribal preservation officer, Steve Vance, who reportedly told Hepper he couldn’t enter the reservation because his truck had North Dakota license plates.

Hepper instead ignored that instruction and continued on US 212 past the checkpoint onto the reservation.

The preservation officer used a dual-axle pickup to follow Hepper on US 212 and called the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribal police department for assistance.

Tribal Police Sergeant Terry Long Mandan joined the pursuit and tried to pull Hepper over. Meanwhile Dewey County Sheriff’s Deputy Dan Assman deployed spike strips two to three miles ahead. Hepper stopped after passing the deputy’s vehicle. The deputy arrested Hepper.

Jackley said the allegation that Hepper was eluding a law enforcement officer should be dismissed, because the tribal sergeant doesn’t meet the state law’s definition of a state-certified law enforcement officer. Jackley said Hepper stopped when he saw the deputy’s vehicle [Bob Mercer, “Criminal Cases in S.D. Courts Will Test Legal Basis of Cheyenne River Sioux Checkpoints,” KELO-TV, 2020.05.26].

Jackley’s argument assumes that state law reigns supreme over tribal law and that tribes may not organize their own police forces to enforce their own laws on their own sovereign land.

Boy, first Jackley saves Governor Noem’s lieutenant from the scandal of drunken tomfoolery in the Senate, and now he saves her from the embarrassment of Jason Ravnsborg stammering his way through some contrived and shallow court argument about state authority over sovereign tribal nations. After she beat him out of the Governorship in 2018, it’s awfully nice of Marty to keep saving Kristi’s political career.

Location, location? The news says Hepper is from Kenel, South Dakota. However, his White Pages listing shows no Kenel, just North Dakota addresses. He ran a Bismarck ranch when he was named North American Limousin Producer of the Year in 2015, and he applied for immigrant labor to come mind his cattle this year, he listed his hoped-for foreign help’s place of employment as Fort Yates, North Dakota. Hepper obviously has lots of ground to cover and can’t be troubled by Indian cops trying to keep their people safe from pandemic.


  1. jerry 2020-05-27

    Good find on the liars home address. Just another grease ball that gets a cheap land lease from tribal lands and then fails to follow the rules. The tribe should rescind his lease and give the lease to a responsible rancher. Send his sorry arse back to North Dakota and let Standing Rock decide if he is fit to be among their people. I doubt it that he is.

    Jackley is gonna make a whole lot more money doing this kind of cleanup for NOem’s failed government, than he could have ever hoped for being an elected official. What a goldmine! Ravonsborg is such a dummy he can’t find the keys to his office (they keep changing the locks) so he is as clueless as one could ever hope for…if you’re a grifter.

    Now, to get his hands on the mint of $1.25 BILLION just laying about not doing anything.

  2. jerry 2020-05-27

    In Rapid City, the third driver of Rapid Ride, the public transportation service, has tested positive to Covid19, shutting down essential travel for many here. The service has shut down for two weeks at least.

    Meanwhile, this turd of turds, flaunts his power and wealth, by disregarding lawful and legal protections. The bozohead and all who defend him, should go to the hoosegow and be fined heavily.

  3. jerry 2020-05-27

    Cory’s reporting also exposed another blatant violation of the rules of business on the Cheyenne River Reservation, the TERO (Tribal Employment Rights Office). As a business, which he has declared himself to be, doing business on the reservation, which he is, he has an obligation to hire the locals. His request for H2B is the smoking paper that is all rolled up and ready to spank his sorry behind. Maybe get some back charges and fines, oh lordy, it gets better.

    What five words will make the bozohead match a suit and tie with Jackley?… “Will the defendant please rise”. Man, live stream that case and them patter him down the hallway to TERO court, would be worth a couple thousand bucks in revenue easy. Tribal version of WWE, only this time, “IT’S FOR REAL”, the announcer says on the youtube.

  4. leslie 2020-05-27

    Insightful jerry, as ever. Suppose if Noem respected tribal sovereignty, rednecks would too?

  5. Debbo 2020-05-27

    Like many of the ones on the right, he’s shameless, even while bringing shame on himself.

    I wonder if there’s a possibility that this was set up by Kruel Kristi and/or Jackley to get this issue in court?

  6. mike from iowa 2020-05-27

    It is in court, I believe.

    PIERRE, S.D. (KELO) — One of the first cases alleging criminal violations of traffic checkpoints that the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe is operating on state and federal highways began slowly moving through a South Dakota courtroom Tuesday.

    State Circuit Judge Gordon Swanson set a July 20 hearing to consider motions filed Tuesday from a defense attorney, Marty Jackley, and responses from Dewey County State Attorney Steve Aberle.

    Aberle told the judge he had communicated with the tribal government’s attorney general, Stacey Zephier, and expected there could be a friend of the court brief from the tribe. Aberle said he was aware of about a half-dozen such checkpoint cases.

    Jackley entered pleas of not guilty for his client, Wayne Hepper of rural Kenel. Jackley, a former U.S. attorney for the District of South Dakota and a former state attorney general, lost in the 2018 Republican primary for governor to then-Congresswoman Kristi Noem

  7. jerry 2020-05-27

    I want to see Barack Obama, independent citizen, with a Harvard Law Degree, file a friend of the court and move that this be sent up to federal court. Booyah!!

  8. Richard Schriever 2020-05-27

    The smug smirk on the face of the pickup truck cowboy tells me he’s getting paid to shill for the Gov in this case. He figures even of he loses, he comes out ahead in the cha-ching department.

  9. grudznick 2020-05-27

    Wasn’t that old movie, “Smoke ’em if you got ’em, Bandit” directed by a fellow named Hepper? The fellow in that movie had a black Pontiac, if I recall, while this fellow has a red Ford F350.

  10. grudznick 2020-05-27

    Mr. H there is a lot of talk about this giant pot of money, but who has it? Is the treasurer frolicking in his office, hatless, perhaps maskless, rolling down mountains of Susan B. Anthonys? grudznick submits to you this money doesn’t exist, much like in Grunch of Giants.

  11. jerry 2020-05-27

    Some observant person had written earlier about highway patrol, or city police, county sheriff checkpoints for sobriety, how are these different?

  12. grudznick 2020-05-27

    Mr. Jerry, don’t call me insaner than most, but those are cops. Not archivists. If the Rapid City Librarian set up a sawhorse across the road to my house and demanded my social security number, I tell you I’d have my driver run that roadblock down and let the librarian take away my card. I’m just sayin…

  13. jerry 2020-05-27

    Tribal police is the key word here. Cops can and are tribal police. If the Rapid City Librarian set up a sawhorse across the road to your house, you could ask them to please allow you to pay your overdue book fine without issue. Don’t try to get out of the fines with this Covid19 either Mr. grudznick, they’re onto you.

  14. jerry 2020-05-27

    Good question on the money and here is another, how much did we rake in on internet sales for the year? Should be a bunch for Jackley to be all peacocky and taking on this bogus court case. Boy, does he want to be governor or what, alas, they are two peas in a pod. Give him hoops and a skirt, and voila, you have the same fake.

  15. John 2020-05-27

    Great analysis, Jerry. By all means the tribe should revoke his lease. Likely a clause is to perform in accordance with law and directives.
    The racism in these circumstances by the state government is as breathtaking as was the cops infamous behavior in Minneapolis this week.

  16. grudznick 2020-05-27

    Mr. jerry, I don’t doubt that tribal police are certified law enforcement officers. I am simply equating an archivist to a librarian. They are of the same general ilk. And don’t get grudznick wrong here, I like history and books more than most.

  17. jerry 2020-05-27

    South Dakota tribes are also clear on what happens when the Covid19 virus blanket is unleashed in the Native communities. They know what is going on in Navajo country and why these checkpoints are so necessary. It’s clear that Queen NOem wants to wipe out the Natives with the same kind of tactic as the smallpox blankets that were used so effectively on the unsuspecting tribes. Now, they’re awake and clear on the danger. Still, a lack of tests and providers of the tests and testing sites, why is that Queen NOem?

    “Navajo Nation leaders announced last week that it had the highest per capita COVID-19 infection rate in the United States, outpacing hot spots like New York. The grim statistic highlights the historical failings of the US government, Navajo leaders say.

    There were 4,794 cases out of the Navajo Nation’s 173,000 residents as of Monday, according to Navajo Nation authorities, and that number could rise as testing increases. At least 157 people have died.

    Navajo Nation President Jonathan Nez said in a Monday press release that “14.6 percent of our citizens have been tested so far. The Navajo Nation continues to test at a higher rate per capita than any state in the country.”

    This guy has worn out his welcome. Bu-bye.

  18. Jeff Barth 2020-05-27

    Someone is going to get hurt. Sigh…

  19. bearcreekbat 2020-05-28

    The SD’s three eluding statutes, SDCL 32-33-18, 18.1 and 18.2, do seem to make the involvement of a “law enforcement officer” an element of the offense. For example 32-33-18.1 provides in part:

    . . . Any driver of a vehicle who, after failing or refusing to bring a vehicle to a stop pursuant to § 32-33-18, flees from the law enforcement officer or attempts to elude the pursuit of the law enforcement officer is guilty of eluding.. . .

    The other two statutes contain similar language.

    SDCL 23-3-27 defines “Law enforcement officer” as

    . . . any employee or officer of the state or any political subdivision thereof and who is responsible for the prevention and detection of crime and the enforcement of the criminal or highway traffic laws of this state.

    If Hepper eluded Dewey County Sheriff’s Deputy Dan Assman then Hepper is likely toast. But if he eluded a tribal police officer the issue becomes whether that officer was “an employee or officer” of SD or a “political subdivision” of the State.

    Many states enter into agreements with Tribes to cross-deputize tribal officers so they can enforce state law in tribal jurisdictions and other states simply enact statutes for this purpose, but according to this research paper SD is one of a minority of

    s . . states with Indian tribes [that] do not provide tribal officers with statutory police authority.89 As a result, fifty-two tribes in the continental United States are unable to enforce state laws on their reservations without a specific local agreement. . . .

    89. Alaska, Idaho, Indiana, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Montana, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Tennessee, Utah, Virginia, Wyoming are the states with Indian tribes that do not provide officers with statutory police authority.


    Looks like Jackley may be on to something, at least under SD law, although there may well be a federal criminal statute applicable as the US often enacts federal crimes for conduct on tribal land in cases the state lacks criminal jurisdiction. It will be interesting to see how this plays out in court.

  20. Michael Rousseau 2020-05-28

    If your an Indian and you break the law then or Tribal Cops or Federal Officers being Federal Trained. Jackley most want to take Janklows place as a Indian fighter

  21. mike from iowa 2020-05-28

    Be interesting to know if the miscreant is registered to vote in both Dakotas and where his primary residence is. There are three, I believe, two north of the northern border of Northern Mississippi.

  22. Clyde 2020-05-28

    Hepper looks the part of a A..hole. Do hope all of his leases are revoked.

  23. jerry 2020-05-28

    Mr. Rousseau, how can you tell if the police cars in Dewey County are so noticeably different from the Cheyenne River tribal police cars and especially, at 10.00 at night? I’m not sure how he could tell the difference. Also, for something as serious as eluding any police, I wonder what was the blood alcohol test results? I know mine would be checked, just curious how it all worked with this guy.

  24. bearcreekbat 2020-05-28

    As suggested in my last comment if Jackley’s eluding defense succeeds in state court, it appears that the eluding charge may be covered by the federal General Crimes Act, which would mean Hepper indeed could be prosecuted criminally in federal court.

    678. THE GENERAL CRIMES ACT—18 U.S.C. § 1152

    Under 18 U.S.C. § 1152 the “general laws of the United States as to the punishment of crimes committed in any place within the sole and exclusive jurisdiction of the United States, . . . extend to the Indian country.” . . . The Assimilative Crimes Act, 18 U.S.C. § 13, is also one of those extended to the Indian country by 18 U.S.C. § 1152, allowing the borrowing of state law when there is no applicable federal statute. . . .

    18 U.S.C. § 13 provides

    (a)Whoever within or upon any of the places . . . not within the jurisdiction of any State, Commonwealth, territory, possession, or district is guilty of any act or omission which, although not made punishable by any enactment of Congress, would be punishable if committed or omitted within the jurisdiction of the State, Territory, Possession, or District in which such place is situated, by the laws thereof in force at the time of such act or omission, shall be guilty of a like offense and subject to a like punishment.

    Could this be a case where Jackley’s client successfully jumps out of the frying pan but then lands in the fire?

  25. mike from iowa 2020-05-28

    According to Limousin award story, Hepper was born up north and has Flying O Ranch outside Bismark and a 2400 head cow operation in North Central North Dakota.

  26. John 2020-05-28

    Good catch bearcreek . . . and of course criminal sanctions under federal law are almost always more stringent than are state sanctions.

  27. jerry 2020-05-28

    Today, 41 million Americans of all colors, races and genders, are unemployed. Let that soak in for a minute. Meanwhile this un-American fakey oligarch seeks to hire H2B laborers to work the land under his control. It matters not to him where these laborers come from as long as they are not American citizens. All of these H2B laborers come from Covid19 hot spots like Mexico, Central and South America that he wants to bring into the area for an even further danger of contamination on both the Standing Rock and the Cheyenne River reservations.

    This man is a menace. A clear and present danger to all members, as well as the rest of the population at this time. The only reason I can think of that Queen NOem decided to go after the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe instead of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe or any of the other tribes in South Dakota that also have check points, is because history has already dealt a band of the Cheyenne River Tribe a huge blow. The massacre at Wounded Knee that almost destroyed the Minneconjou Band was done with the Hotchkiss gun. Today, they seek to change the Hotchkiss gun with the Covid19 for the same results to complete the massacre.

  28. Debbo 2020-05-28

    FYI, a line in the Axios Afternoon newsletter by Mike Allen:

    “President Trump will go ahead with a July 4 celebration in D.C.”

    Does Kruel Kristi know that her daddy is not coming?

  29. Debbo 2020-05-28

    Dusty Johnson did a thing right. Mike, he donated to your white scumacyst representative. Drey Samuelson posted this on FB:

    I’m not going to nominate Dusty Johnson for the next edition of Profiles in Courage, but I’ll give him a little credit for having the courage to donate money to beat the odious Steve King in the GOP primary–not an easy (and certainly not a usual) thing to do for a freshman memberl

    “…In a rare rebuke of a sitting colleague, five members of the House GOP conference have donated to Feenstra: Reps. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.), Paul Mitchell (R-Mich.), Steve Stivers (R-Ohio), Dusty Johnson (R-S.D.) and Will Hurd (R-Texas), who recently launched a group to help diversify the GOP ranks…”

  30. Cory Allen Heidelberger Post author | 2020-05-29

    Rushmore fireworks are scheduled for July 3. The tribes should consider a demonstration on the road to Mount Rushmore that day.

  31. leslie 2020-05-29

    jerry, interestingly after the Black Elk peak renaming, mountains of empathy (e.g. Cannonization ect) around the world, including ancestors of Hotchkiss, seeking forgiveness for the Nation’s genocide of our Indian neighbors.

    There may be a website. I’ll look.

  32. jerry 2020-05-29

    leslie, nationally, white America seems to be finally catching on that here in America, there is a huge racial divide that they now see is destroying us. Here, the white governor and her white syndicate of legislators and lawyers, have decided that they must have complete access to infect the virus on those who are unwilling to be infected. They will even break the law, their own law to allow this attack. The penis with a hat knew full well that he was breaking the law when he ran through the roadblock, but he did it anyway because of his white privilege.

    When you find the link, post it please. I’m sure many, like myself, would like to see it.

  33. Clyde 2020-05-30

    Feenstra makes Steve King look like a choir boy!
    Its pretty obvious that the GOP has decided that King is a liability though and lots of GOP support is going after him. He’s in the cross hairs.
    Constant barrage of Feenstra ads but not a peep from a Democratic possibility yet. In north west Iowa I guess a Democrat would be asking too much. Guess we will see what comes this fall after Feenstra beats out Stevie in the primary.

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