‘Dances With Wolves’ actor due in court in sex abuse probe

NORTH LAS VEGAS (AP) — A former “Dances with Wolves” actor faces at least five felony counts after he allegedly sexually abused Native American girls. He will face the judge for the first time in the case on Thursday.

Possible charges against 46-year-old Nathan Chasing Horse include sex trafficking and sexual assault, according to court documents. Clark County prosecutors have not said when he will be formally charged or if additional charges will be filed.

Las Vegas police arrested Chasing Hose this week Authorities said after a month-long investigation into abuse that spanned two decades.

He was being held without bail Wednesday evening in the Clark County Jail on a sexual assault charge. A judge is expected to consider his custody status and grant bail on Thursday.

Best known for his role as the young Sioux tribe member Smiles a Lot in the Oscar-winning Kevin Costner film, Chasing Horse, he gained fame as a so-called medicine man who performed healing ceremonies among tribes in the United States and Canada.

He is believed to be the leader of a cult known as The Circle, which has a strong following who believe they can communicate with higher powers, according to an arrest warrant.

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Police said he abused his position, physically and sexually abused indigenous girls and women, took underage wives and led cults. He was arrested outside the home he shares with his five wives near Las Vegas.

Chasing Horse was born on the Rosebud Reservation in South Dakota, home to the Sikangu Sioux, one of the seven tribes of the Lakota Nation.

In a 50-page search warrant obtained by The Associated Press on Tuesday, Chasing Horse claimed he trained his wives to use firearms and instructed them to be “shot” by police officers if they tried to “break up their family.” Failing that, wives must take “suicide pills.”

He was taken into custody when he left his home in North Las Vegas. Detectives searched the property and saw SWAT officers outside the two-story home in the evening.

Police found guns, 41 pounds (18.5 kilograms) of marijuana, psilocybin mushrooms and a memory card with multiple videos of sexual assaults, according to an arrest report released Wednesday.

The report also said that more charges may be laid in connection with the video of the minor girl.

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Court documents did not list an attorney who could comment on his behalf, and Las Vegas police said Chasing Hose was unable to give a jailhouse interview Wednesday.

Las Vegas police said in a search warrant that investigators have identified at least six other sexual assault victims, including one who was 13 when she claimed she was abused. In the early 2000s, police found sex allegations against Chasing Horse in Canada and multiple states, including South Dakota, Montana and Nevada, where he lived for nearly a decade.

One of Chasing Horse’s wives offered her a “bounty” when she was 15, according to police, and the other became his wife when she turned 16. him

His arrest comes nearly a decade after he was kicked out of the Fort Peck Reservation in Poplar, Montana, on charges of human trafficking.

Fort Peck tribal leaders voted in 2015 to ban Chasing Horse from stepping onto the reservation again, citing allegations of drug dealing, spiritual abuse and intimidation of tribal members, Indian Country Today reported.

Angeline Cheek, an activist and community organizer who has lived on the Fort Peck reservation for most of her life, said she vividly remembers the tensions that arose inside the council’s chambers when Chasing Horse was kicked out.

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“Some of Nathan’s supporters told members that something bad was going to happen to them,” Cheek told the AP. They threatened our elders sitting in the council chamber.

Cheek said he remembered Chasing Horse visiting the reservation frequently when he was growing up, especially during high school in the early 2000s, when he would see him talking to his classmates.

Cheek, now 34, said she hopes Chasing Horse’s arrest will inspire more Native girls and women to report crimes and inspire lawmakers and elected officials across the U.S. to prioritize violence against Native people.

But she said she hopes the cultural significance of medicine men won’t be lost in crime news.

“There are good medicine men and medicine women among our people who are not trying to commercialize the sacred ways of our ancestors,” she said. “They should heal people, not hurt them.”


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