In a recent case on the Fort Belknap Indian Reservation, two individuals have admitted to charges of intimidation following an attempted theft from a local store. Dustin Alan Robbins, 38, and Nicole Lynn Hicks, 37, both transients, pleaded guilty to the charges, which included stealing from the store and assaulting an employee. If convicted, the defendants face a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison, a $50,000 fine, and three years of supervised release. The court will determine their sentence in January 2024, taking into account various factors and guidelines. The case was investigated by the FBI and Fort Belknap Law Enforcement, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Amanda L. Myers is prosecuting.
Two persons admit intimidation charges after attempted theft from store on Fort Belknap Indian Reservation
In a recent development, two individuals have pleaded guilty to intimidation charges following an attempted theft from a store on the Fort Belknap Indian Reservation. This incident involved non-Indian individuals who had been excluded from the reservation due to a previous incident. The defendants now face potential penalties that include a maximum of 10 years in prison, a $50,000 fine, and three years of supervised release.
Defendants plead guilty to intimidation charges
The defendants in this case, identified as Dustin Alan Robbins and Nicole Lynn Hicks, both transients, admitted charges of intimidation after being accused of stealing from a store and assaulting a store employee. The guilty pleas were entered during a court hearing, and the defendants now await sentencing for their actions.
As a result of their guilty pleas, Robbins and Hicks face potential penalties if convicted. The maximum sentence for their charges is 10 years in prison, along with a fine of $50,000 and three years of supervised release. The court will consider various factors, including the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, in determining the appropriate sentence for the defendants.
Sentencing date set for Jan. 24, 2024
The sentencing for Robbins and Hicks has been scheduled for January 24, 2024. During this hearing, the court will thoroughly consider the nature of the charges, the evidence presented during the proceedings, and any mitigating or aggravating factors before reaching a decision on the appropriate sentence for the defendants.
Background of the case
The case in question involves an incident that took place on November 1, 2021, at the Red Paint Creek Trading Post located in Lodge Pole on the Fort Belknap Indian Reservation. At the time of the incident, both defendants had been excluded from the reservation by the Fort Belknap community following a separate incident near Hays in September 2021.
Allegations against the defendants
According to court documents, Nicole Lynn Hicks entered the Red Paint Creek Trading Post and took a 30-pack of beer without paying for it. As Hicks left the store, a store employee, who is of Indian descent, followed her outside. Hicks placed the beer on the ground as she attempted to escape through a fence. The store employee went to retrieve the stolen beer, and it was at this point that Dustin Alan Robbins ran towards the employee, physically assaulting her, and making threats to burn down the store.
Assault and threats at the Red Paint Creek Trading Post
Upon becoming aware of the theft, the store manager, also of Indian descent, went outside and witnessed Robbins assaulting the store employee. In an effort to protect the employee, the store manager picked up a large rock while yelling that the police had been called. Robbins ceased the assault, and he and Hicks fled the scene. During their departure, Hicks continued to scream, while Robbins threatened to burn down the store, claiming association with the mafia.
Robbins and Hicks located and removed from the reservation
Despite their exclusion from the reservation, Robbins and Hicks were located at a residence within the reservation by tribal police. Subsequently, they were removed from the reservation to ensure compliance with their exclusion and for further legal proceedings.
Prosecution and investigation
The United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Montana is handling the prosecution of this case. Assistant U.S. Attorney Amanda L. Myers is leading the prosecution efforts. The investigation into these charges was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and Fort Belknap Law Enforcement.
For further information or inquiries regarding this case, please contact:
- Clair Johnson Howard, Public Affairs Officer
- Phone: 406-247-4623
- Email: Clair.Howard@usdoj.gov
Please note that this information is subject to change and should be verified by contacting the appropriate authorities or legal representatives involved in the case.
In conclusion, the guilty pleas entered by Dustin Alan Robbins and Nicole Lynn Hicks indicate their acknowledgment of the intimidation charges brought against them for their involvement in an attempted theft and assault at a store on the Fort Belknap Indian Reservation. As the case progresses towards the sentencing date set for January 24, 2024, the court will consider various factors in determining an appropriate sentence. The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Montana, along with the FBI and Fort Belknap Law Enforcement, have been actively involved in the prosecution and investigation of this case to ensure justice is served. For more information or specific inquiries, please refer to the provided contact information.