Van Chase and LaVallie are enrolled members of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa Indians, as is Jerelyn LaFountain. After LaFountain broke off a relationship with Van Chase, he continued to pursue her at her workplace and at her home in Belcourt, North Dakota on the Turtle Mountain Indian Reservation. At about 5 a.m. on May 17, 1996 he and LaVallie went to her house and banged on the door. Both men had previously been seen at a party where they stayed until about 4 a.m. and where Van Chase had been drinking from a large bottle of whiskey.
When LaFountain came to the door, Van Chase and LaVallie forced their way into the house. Each was carrying a gun. Van Chase told LaVallie to check if anyone else was in the house and then demanded that LaFountain leave with them. When she refused repeated demands to accompany them, Van Chase punched her, pointed his gun at her children, and threatened to kill them. She yelled for the intruders to leave, but Van Chase told her to "shut up or you will watch your kids die." Van Chase and LaVallie threatened her with their guns and a kitchen knife and began to hit her. Van Chase ordered LaVallie to grab LaFountain and they then dragged her out of the house, punching her as they went. They got into Van Chase's truck, and he told LaVallie to knock her out. They drove off with LaVallie at the wheel and Van Chase holding LaFountain down. Van Chase poked LaFountain with a knife and told her to keep quiet, that she "was going to die," and that he was "going to bury" her. When LaFountain saw they were passing her cousin's house, she slammed the brakes on the truck and grabbed the steering wheel, but Van Chase punched her in the eye and split it open.
The three drove on to Van Chase's house which was outside the reservation. At the house Van Chase again pointed his gun at LaFountain and threatened to kill her before dragging her out of the pickup by her hair. LaFountain protested that she was cold and had no shoes. Van Chase told LaVallie to give her shoes and a coat to wear and a rope and ski mask to carry, and threatened to "blow her away" if she dropped them. As they moved towards a wooded area, LaFountain used the ski mask to clear blood from her eye and heard Van Chase tell LaVallie, "I ain't going to fuck this bitch. I'm going to kill her." They arrived at a spot where she saw a supply of liquor and cigarettes and a black dufflebag. Van Chase told LaFountain to look inside the bag because her ex-boyfriend's head was in it, but she declined. Van Chase then ordered LaFountain to sit on a car hood in an adjacent area cluttered with junk. He fired his gun into the hood and told her that "that could have been your head." LaFountain expressed concern about her children, and Van Chase ordered LaVallie to go get them. While LaVallie left to return to the reservation in the pickup to collect the children, Van Chase and LaFountain returned to the house. Van Chase gave LaFountain a sweatshirt and pants to put on, and she discarded her nightshirt on the floor.
LaVallie returned with the children and left again when Van Chase instructed him to hide his gun, and Van Chase and LaFountain went back to her house on the reservation.
Jurisdiction: U.S. Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit
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