Trial of Arlo Looking Cloud
THE COURT: Very well, defense may proceed.
MR. RENSCH: I would like to reserve my right to
make a motion, and at this time I would call David Price to
THE COURT: Very well, you can make your motion
after we have recessed for the evening.
MR. RENSCH: Okay, thank you, Your Honor.
called as a witness, being first duly sworn, testified and
said as follows:
DIRECT EXAMINATION BY MR. RENSCH:
Q. Please state your name for the record, sir?
A. David Price, P-R-I-C-E.
Q. How are you presently employed?
A. I am a Special Agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Q. How long have you been so employed?
A. About 33 years.
Q. What type of training do you go through to become a
Special Agent with the FBI?
A. I went through the basic course, I think that was three
or four months back in 1971, and continued training now and
then throughout the career.
Q. I would like to direct your attention to the year 1975.
Do you have that timeframe in mind, sir?
A. Yes, sir.
Q. How were you employed at that time?
A. I was an FBI agent stationed here in Rapid City, South Dakota.
Q. How long had you been stationed in Rapid City at that point?
A. I think I was here in 1973.
Q. As it relates to your duties as a Special Agent with the
FBI, did those duties include cultivating informants?
A. It did.
Q. How so?
A. Informants are used to tell you who does crimes, to warn
you of crimes, and basically that is what informants are for.
Q. Did you personally take part in cultivating informants
or contacts within the American Indian Movement in 1975?
A. Yes, sir.
Q. In that regard in 1975, did you come into contact with
informants who were working for the FBI against the American
A. I am sure I did.
Q. Was one of the informants that you --
A. Sir, may I qualify one thing.
Q. No, you can't. No. I have to ask you the questions,
because otherwise it goes on for a long time. Did you know an
informant named John Stewart?
A. I don't know that John Stewart was an informant.
Q. Did you know a John Stewart?
A. I had contact with a John Stewart.
Q. What year would that have been?
A. 1975 or 1976.
Q. Did you know an individual by the name of Anna Mae
A. I met Anna Mae Pictou twice.
Q. When did you meet her?
A. I met Anna Mae Pictou the first time April 10th, 1975.
Q. Where at?
A. She was at the Ted Lame residence, which is just, I
can't give you the exact mileage, but it is south maybe four
or five miles south of Oglala, South Dakota on the west side
of the road, it was at that time.
Q. When was the next time that you met her?
A. I met her September 5th on the Rosebud Reservation.
Q. At any of those points did you attempt to cultivate her
as an informant?
A. No, sir.
Q. At any of those points did you ask her to become an informant?
A. No, sir.
Q. At any of those points did you ask her if she would
provide information relative to the activities of the American
A. I asked her about a murder.
Q. Where would that have been?
A. The murder was of Jeanette Bissonette, occurred on March
26, 1975, four or five miles south of the Ted Lame place on
the land belonging to a brother of the tribal president, his
name was, Dick Wilson was the brother.
Q. And what day would it have been that you attempted to
get information from Ms. Pictou-Aquash?
A. I met her on April 10th at the Ted Lame home.
Q. In 1975 how many informants did you regularly deal with
that were involved in the American Indian Movement?
MR. MANDEL: Objection, relevance.
THE COURT: Overruled. I am assuming this is kind
of background, but move along on it.
A. The informants were advising of crimes and not about the
American Indian Movement. They advise of fugitives, advise of
things like that, crimes.
BY MR. RENSCH:
Q. How many informants did you utilize in 1975?
A. Very few.
MR. RENSCH: I have nothing further, thank you, sir.
MR. MANDEL: No questions, Your Honor.
THE COURT: Thank you Mr. Price. Call your next
MR. RENSCH: The defense rests. Your Honor.
THE COURT: Very well, I am going to discharge you
for the evening now because we have some things to take care
of out of the presence of the jury. I will want you to come
back in the morning at, I am gauging time on things we have to
do before you get back. At ten o'clock in the morning. I
want you to not decide the case tonight, because now you know
you have heard the evidence, but you have not had a chance to
listen to the argument of the lawyers. The arguments of the
lawyers are not evidence, I have already told you that, you
know that. But they may be helpful to you in determining how
you are going to look at the evidence and how you may apply
the evidence and the facts as you determine them to be to the
law as I will give it to you in my instructions. I gave you
some preliminary instructions at the beginning of the case, I
have given you instructions at different times, normally
limiting instructions, but some other instructions, too,
during the course of the trial. I will give you instructions
at the end of the trial which are much more detailed. You
will have to pay attention to all the instructions, however,
but you won't have those things until tomorrow, after I have
given you all those things and you have heard the arguments,
then you will good back and for the first time you can talk to
each other about the case, and that's when you should be
deciding the case and not tonight when you are by yourself.
So don't do any research, I don't want you to read the
newspaper or watch the news in case there is anything on about
this. I don't want you to talk to your children or
significant other or anybody else with regard to the case, and
just have a good night's sleep, and we will see you then at
ten o'clock tomorrow morning. Please stand for the jury.
(Jury leaves at 4:30).
THE COURT: The defense may make their motion.
MR. RENSCH: At this time. Your Honor, I would move
for judgment acquittal be entered as it relates to Mr. Arlo
Looking Cloud on the failure of the government to prove up
prima facie case of the crime charged. I would specifically
request that the Court take notice of the depth of the
evidence as it related to the American Indian Movement prior
to any events which were within a timeframe near this alleged
crime. Seems to me that this started out to be a proceeding
where this background of the American Indian Movement was
going to have some nexus or connection to the offense charged
as it relates to Mr. Arlo Looking Cloud, and it in no way had
any nexus to him whatsoever. There was no reason to get into
the events of the Custer riot, the events of other things that
happened, the events of the FBI shoot-out in Oglala, all of
those things, and I think that they put him in a disadvantage
in front of this jury, and I would request the Court enter a
judgment of acquittal.
THE COURT: Alright, what does the plaintiff have to
MR. MANDEL: Your Honor, I guess I don't know if
there is an evidentiary ruling that the defendant is speaking
about in terms of evidence that he thinks shouldn't have been
admitted, but he really seems to be making the wrong argument
for a motion of a judgment of acquittal. The question is
whether or not there is a prima facie case present. There is
such as to all the elements of this offense, and I could
frankly go through the evidence in detail, but the Court has
been sitting here, I don't think that that is necessary.
There is a submissible case to go to the jury in this case.
If the defendant didn't like the evidence that was being
presented, I guess he has the right to object to it and the
Court can rule on those objections, but frankly that is not a
basis for granting a motion for judgment of acquittal. So it
is not even pertinent to this issue. Our position is simply
that a prima facie case was presented, that we met our burden,
and this case should go to the jury.
THE COURT: Well, objections were made, I ruled on
them, I think I was right, but the question aside from that
is, though, whether or not there has been a prima facie case
submitted, and I realize that's what the defense is saying,
and there is a prima facie case that is a submissible case for
the jury, and the case will go to the jury, and the motion for
judgment of acquittal is denied. And I am not going to cite
the evidence, but the evidence is sufficient to submit the
case to the jury. Now counsel had asked for an hour apiece
for argument. Once again, of course, that doesn't mean you
have to use it, but that's up to you. I told you I would
grant you that, which I will, and I do. Now with regard to
the settling of the instructions, if you would, I would like
you to wait around this evening, because I want to go over the
instructions once more because I never finalize them until I
am sure what the evidence is, and then I will give you then
the instructions yet this evening. So I want you here at 9:00
in the morning and we will settle the instructions, and then
we will argue starting at 10:00. You realize that my practice
is that I instruct after argument. I like the jury to go out
having heard from me last as opposed to the impassioned pleas
of counsel. So you have the right, though, to use the
instructions, and you can put them up on the display system if
you want, and the only thing is you use ones without authority
on them so when a juror is looking at an instruction they
don't know if it is one the defense proposed or the government
proposed or one the Court just gave on its own anyway, which
most of them are. Are there any questions?
MR. RENSCH: I have no questions. I have a request,
could I please have a copy of the initial instructions that
you read to the jury as well, Your Honor?
THE COURT: Yes. You can get them from the clerk.
At least I think I gave them. If I didn't, I should have
given them. I will file them now with the clerk and you can
get a set of them from the clerk. You know, I made one, and I
told both of you ahead of time, both sides ahead of time, I
made one hand correction before I read them. Let me look at
that and make sure it is on that copy, this is the one I
actually read from. It is in pencil, I will make it in ink
now. Anything else from the defense? From the government?
MR. MANDEL: No, Your Honor.
THE COURT: Thank you, see you at 9:00 in the
morning, we are in recess.
(Recess at 4:40 p.m.)