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Crow Tribe files civil complaint against BIA K-9 Officer

Incident called a violent abuse of power and excessive force
Posted at 9:29 PM, Jul 27, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-28 18:26:50-04

CROW AGENCY — The Crow Tribe announced Tuesday that it is filing a civil complaint against a Bureau of Indian Affairs K-9 officer after video surfaced of an arrest at a traffic stop in Lodge Grass last week.

The Tribe said in a news release that the civil complaint against BIA officer Steve Stallings stems from a violent abuse of power and excessive use of force during the traffic stop.

A video shot by the wife of Harris Red Star shows officers putting handcuffs on Red Star as the police dog bites his foot. Even after Red Star is handcuffed, the dog refuses to release its bite for another 55 seconds.

In the complaint, the Crow Tribe accuses Stallings of aggravated assault, criminal endangerment, and negligent endangerment—causing Red Star emotional and physical injury.

The Tribe is seeking to have Stallings excluded from the reservation.

In a statement, the Tribe said:

“Unfortunately, nothing in this video is surprising to anyone who has lived on the Crow Nation. Make no doubt that we need policing and more officers to cover 2.3 million acres, but we need quality, trained law enforcement. Excessive force against Crow people by a federal officer should never happen. The video clearly shows an officer who is not properly trained, who cannot control a K-9, and shouldn’t be policing our people and tribal lands.”

Red Star underwent three surgeries on his ankle and foot following the surgery. He is facing charges of resisting arrest, obstructing, and assault on a peace officer for his part in the incident.