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Former Tribal Council Member Sentenced for Assault

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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) – A former Standing Rock Sioux tribal council member has been sentenced to two years in prison for domestic assault by an habitual offender.

U.S. Attorney Brendan Johnson says 44-year-old Kerby St. John was convicted in June for an incident that took place in July 2011 in Kenel, a community on the Standing Rock reservation.

The reservation spans the North Dakota-South Dakota border.

The jury’s verdict is believed to be one of the first in the nation involving a new federal statute that punishes acts of domestic violence in which an accused person has two prior convictions of domestic violence in federal, state or tribal courts.

St. John was previously convicted twice in tribal court for domestic assault.

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