Energy

Woman Who Says She Doesn’t Remember Shooting At Police During Pipeline Protests Gets Less Than Five Years In Prison

REUTERS

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Evie Fordham Politics and Health Care Reporter

A woman accused of firing a handgun at police officers during protests against the Dakota Access oil pipeline in North Dakota in 2016 received a federal prison sentence of four years and nine months on Wednesday.

Red Fawn Fallis, a 39-year-old Colorado resident, was originally charged with attempted murder until a state court dropped the charges in 2016. She ended up pleading guilty to civil disorder and illegal possession of a gun by a convicted felon. Fallis was convicted in 2003 for driving a car for a man who shot and injured another man in Colorado, reported the Associated Press.

Fallis claims she does not remember firing a gun three times and resisting the officers taking her into custody on Oct. 27, 2016. No one was injured during the incident, although an officer said one shot came very close to his left knee. Fallis reportedly said the officers were lucky she had not shot them all after they tackled her. (RELATED: Nevada Judge Postpones Lethal Injection With Hours To Spare At Request Of Drug Company)

“This is a very serious case that could have escalated into something far worse … [a] chaotic shootout,” said U.S. District Judge Daniel Hovland, who handed down the sentence.

Hovland had granted Fallis, who is a member of the Oglala Sioux tribe, permission to wear “culturally appropriate clothing” at her sentencing instead of jail clothing, reported the Associated Press.

Fallis was one of 761 pipeline protesters arrested in southern North Dakota in 2016 and 2017. The pipeline has been operating since 2017, although four American Indian tribes are still suing to get rid of it, reported the Associated Press.

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