United States District Court, D. South Dakota, Central Division
OPINION AND ORDER ADOPTING REPORT AND
ROBERTO A. LANGE, UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE
Peters, a non-Indian, moved to suppress statements he made to
tribal law enforcement officers, arguing that the officers
failed to comply with Miranda v. Arizona, 384 U.S.
436 (1966) and violated the Fourth Amendment by detaining
him. Magistrate Judge Mark A. Moreno issued a report and
recommendation recommending denying Peters's motion, Doc.
39, and Peters has now filed objections to that
recommendation, Doc, 40. For the reasons explained below,
this Court adopts the report and recommendation and overrules
approximately 1:19 a.m. on November 3, 2016, Officer Daniel
Rice and Sergeant Emmanuel Bear Killer of the Cheyenne River
Sioux Tribe Police Department responded to a J
i report that a male and female were
fighting behind the Cheyenne River Motel. T. 6-7, 27, 49.
Upon arriving, Officer Rice saw Peters and two women entering
the motel through a side entrance. T. 7-9, 27. Officer Rice
rolled down his window and asked them to stop, but one of the
females said they were okay and were going to bed. T. 8. The
motel's side entrance was locked by the time Officer Rice
exited his patrol car, so he and Sergeant Bear Killer entered
the motel through the main entrance. T. 8-10. They were
walking down a hallway when Officer Rice heard crying coming
from room 117. T. 10-11, 27, 43. He knocked on room 117's
door and Peters answered, opening the door far enough for
Officer Rice to see that Peters was bleeding from a cut on
his hand. T. 27, 43-44, 47, 51. The officers explained that
they were responding to a fight call, to which Peters replied
that someone had "jumped" him and June High Elk at
a bar in downtown Eagle Butte, South Dakota. T. 13-14, 44.
Officer Rice asked Peters whether he could enter the room to
make sure everyone was okay. T. 12, 28, 44. Peters said that
Officer Rice could come in, opened the door all the way, and
stepped aside. T. 44.
entering room 117, Officer Rice saw High Elk sitting in the
bathroom with blood running down her face. T. 12, 28. There
was blood all over the bathroom sink, floor, and stool. T.
12. Sergeant Bear Killer took High Elk outside the room to
speak with her separately while Officer Rice stayed with
Peters. T. 14. A short time later, Sergeant Bear Killer
reentered the room and told Officer Rice that High Elk had
confirmed Peters's story that they had been assaulted
downtown. T. 14-15. Sergeant Bear Killer then took High Elk
to the emergency room for her injuries. T. 14-15. Officer
Rice followed behind in his patrol car, leaving Peters alone
in room 117. T. 15-16.
emergency room, High Elk asked Officer Rice where Peters was.
T. 16. When High Elk learned that Peters was back at the
hotel, she divulged that Peters was the person who assaulted
her. T. 16, 30. Hearing this, Officer Rice returned to the
motel where he encountered Peters in the hallway leading to
room 117. T. 17-18. Officer Rice inquired whether Peters was
Indian and Peters said that he was not. T. 17-18, 30, 48.
Officer Rice then told Peters that he was being detained for
assaulting High Elk, placed him in handcuffs, and escorted
him to a patrol car. T. 17-18, 30. While walking to the
patrol car, Peters volunteered that High Elk had assaulted
him first and that he had only assaulted her in response. T.
19-21, 32, 35, 46-47. Peters continued to repeat variations
of this statement throughout his detention by tribal police.
T. 24-26; Ex. B I at 00:02-00:15, 01:00-01:25, 01:48-02:00,
02:15-02:45, 17:30-17:40, 1:45:15-1:25:00; Ex. B II at
that he did not have jurisdiction over a non-Indian like
Peters, Officer Rice radioed dispatch to send an Eagle Butte
city police officer. T. 18-19, 41-42; Ex. B I at 00:27-00:55.
The city police chief arrived approximately ten minutes
later. T. 42. He informed Officer Rice that because the
alleged crime involved a non-Indian offender and an Indian
victim, the federal government, rather than the city police,
had jurisdiction over Peters. T. 42, 49-50. At the city
police chiefs suggestion, someone called Larry LeBeau, the
on-call detective for the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe, to have
Detective LeBeau contact an assistant United States attorney.
T. 42, 49. Detective LeBeau obtained authority from an
assistant United States attorney to conduct a probable cause
arrest of Peters. See Doc. 1, Criminal Complaint Affidavit.
to the dash cam video from Officer Rice's patrol car,
Detective LeBeau arrived at the Cheyenne River Motel shortly
after 3:30 a.m. Ex. B II at 04:40. Detective LeBeau informed
Peters that he was being arrested on federal charges of
domestic assault and assault resulting in serious bodily
injury. Ex. B II at 06:20-07:10. Detective LeBeau explained
that Peters would be taken to the hospital to have his hand
checked and then transported to Pierre where he would be held
in federal custody. Ex. B II at 06:20-07:20.
federal grand jury indicted Peters for assault with a
dangerous weapon, assault resulting in serious bodily injury,
assault resulting in substantial bodily injury to an intimate
partner, and domestic assault by a habitual offender. Doc.
13. Peters moved to suppress his November 3, 2016 statements,
arguing that the tribal police violated the Fourth Amendment
by detaining a non-Indian like himself and violated
Miranda by questioning him without first reading him
his rights. Docs. 27, 28. The government opposed Peters's
motion. Doc. 34. Judge Moreno held an evidentiary hearing at
which he heard testimony from Officer Rice and received
copies of Officer Rice's lapel and dash cam videos into
evidence. Judge Moreno issued a report and recommendation
recommending that Peters's motion to suppress be denied,
Doc. 34, and Peters has now objected, Doc. 40.
Court reviews a report and recommendation pursuant to the
statutory standards found in 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1),
which provides in relevant part that "[a] judge of the
[district] court shall make a de novo determination of those
portions of the report or specified proposed findings or
recommendations to which objection is made." "In
the absence of an objection, the district court is not
required 'to give any more consideration to the
magistrate's report than the court considers
appropriate.'" United States v. Simeon, 115
F.Supp.3d 981, 993 (N.D. Iowa 2015) (quoting Thomas v.
Arn. 474 U.S. 140, 150 (1985)).
only specific objection Peters makes is that Judge Moreno
should have found that the tribal police violated the Fourth
Amendment by detaining him. Doc. 40. According to Peters, his
status as a non-Indian made his detention unreasonable. Doc.
40. Although tribes generally do not have criminal
jurisdiction over non-Indians, Oliphant v. Suquamish
Indian Tribe, 435 U.S. 191, 195, 212 (1978), tribal
police have the authority to detain non-Indians who commit
crimes within Indian country until they can be turned over to
the appropriate state or federal authorities, Duro v.
Reina, 495 U.S. 676, 697 (1990) ("Tribal law
enforcement authorities have the power to restrain those who
disturb public order on the reservation, and if necessary, to
eject them. Where jurisdiction to try and punish an offender
rests outside the tribe, tribal officers may exercise their
power to detain the offender and transport him to the proper
authorities."); United States v. Terry. 400
F.3d 575, 579 (8th Cir. 2005) (explaining that tribal police
have the authority "to detain non-Indians whose conduct
disturbs the public order on their reservation"). A
tribal police officer's detention of a non-Indian must be
reasonable under Fourth Amendment standards. 25 U.S.C. §
1302(2); Terry, 400 F.3d at 580; United States
v. Becerra-Garcia. 397 F.3d 1167, 1171 (9th Cir. 2005).
tribal police's detention of Peters was reasonable under
the Fourth Amendment. Peters's presence outside the
Cheyenne River Motel when tribal police arrived, his bleeding
hand, the injuries on High Elk's face, and High Elk's
statement that Peters had assaulted her gave Officer Rice
probable cause to detain Peters. When Officer Rice learned
that Peters was a non-Indian, he contacted the city police
immediately after securing Peters in the back of his patrol
car. T. 41. Once it became clear that the federal government
had jurisdiction over Peters, Detective LeBeau contacted an
assistant United States attorney and obtained authority to
make a probable cause arrest of Peters. Not long thereafter,
Officer Rice transported Peters to the hospital and then to
Pierre where he was taken into federal custody. All told, the
tribal police's detention of Peters-including the trip to
the hospital and the transport to Pierre-lasted approximately
five-and-a-half hours. See Exs. B, C. This was not
an unreasonable amount of time under the circumstances. See
Terry, 400 F.3d at 580 (holding that it was not
unreasonable for tribal police to detain a non-Indian
defendant overnight when the state sheriff was eighty miles
away on a rainy night and did not have any deputies
argues that his statements should be suppressed under
United States v. Keys,390 F.Supp.2d 875 (D.N.D.
2005), but that case is easily distinguished. In
Keys, BIA officers detained the defendant at a
tribal jail on a Saturday afternoon. Id. at 877-78.
The officers tried but failed to determine the
defendant's race that evening. Id. The officers
took no action on Sunday and the defendant remained in tribal
jail. Id. at 878. By Monday morning, however, the
officers had determined that the defendant was not an Indian.
Id. at 884. Rather than releasing the defendant or
transporting him to the appropriate authorities, the officers
told the defendant that he would be released after an
interview that afternoon. Id. The defendant agreed
to the interview and made incriminating statements.
Id. at 878. The district court held that the BIA
officers' failure to release the defendant before the
Monday afternoon interview was unreasonable. Id.
Unlike the BIA officers in Keys, the tribal police
in this case did exactly what the Supreme Court said they
could: detained a non-Indian offender so that they could
transport him to the appropriate authorities. See
Duro, 495 U.S. at 697; Terry, 400 F.3d ...