South Dakota: Life sentence in 1975 killing of Indian activist

John was convicted in 1975 death of an American Indian Movement activist.

Updated: Jan 25, 2011, 09:38 AM IST

Rapid City: A man convicted in the 1975 death of an American Indian Movement activist will serve life in prison, a judge ruled on Monday.

The man, John Graham, was convicted of second-degree murder for participating in a kidnapping that ended in Annie Mae Aquash’s death.

State law from the time of the killing requires a sentence of life without parole, said Marty Jackley, the state attorney general. Graham appeared before Judge John Delaney on Monday to receive his sentence.

A second man, Arlo Looking Cloud, was convicted in 2004 in connection with the death, which remains synonymous with violent clashes of the 1970s between movement activists and federal agents.
Looking Cloud testified that he had watched Graham shoot Aquash. The authorities say they believe that movement leaders ordered her death because they thought she was helping the government, which officials have denied.

Bureau Report