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The sexual abuse trial of Nathan Chasing Horse has been put on hold indefinitely pending an appeal.

Chasing Horse, who invoked his right to a trial within 60 days of his indictment, was originally scheduled for May 1, 2023, after being indicted by a Las Vegas grand jury indicted him in late February on charges of sexual assault of a minor, kidnapping, lewdness, child abuse and drug trafficking. 

Clark County District Judge Carli Kierny said Wednesday during a brief court hearing that she would set a new trial date if the Nevada Supreme Court upholds her decision to deny Chasing Horses request to toss out the charges against him. The defense has maintained the victims in the indictment wanted to have sex with Chasing Horse. 

Judge Kierny set a hearing for May 10, 2023, to check on the status of Chasing Horse’s appeal to the high court, which has yet to be filed. 

Chasing Horse, 46, is perhaps best known for his role as “Smiles A Lot” in the 1990 movie Dances With Wolves. Since then, he used the fame from this to market himself in Indian country as a supposed healer and medicine man who could speak with higher beings. It was through this he would use his influence to gain access to families with young indigenous girls and women. Prosecutors and police stated he was the leader of a cult, “The Circle.” 

A SWAT team raided his North Las Vegas home on January 31, 2023 and arrested Chasing Horse. 

In addition to the Nevada case, Chasing Horse is facing federal charges and warrants for his arrest were issued in Canada and on the Fort Peck Indian Reservation. 

On the Fort Peck Reservation, Chasing Horse has been visiting and performing ceremonies over the years. In 2015, Chasing Horse was banished from the Fort Peck Indian Reservation after the Tribal Executive Board agreed he was a “safety threat.” This includes the fact that he was using guns to intimidate other tribal members from going to the sun dance ceremonies Chasing Horse would perform. 

Recently, the Tribal Court issued an arrest warrant for Chasing Horse charging him with aggravated sexual assault of a child. Tribal Criminal Investigator Kenny Trottier said they were told of allegations of sexual abuse and when they submitted the case for prosecution the United States Attorney’s Office but it was declined. 

Under Fort Peck Tribal law, there are no statue of limitations on aggravated sexual assault of a child.



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