BILLINGS – A Northern Cheyenne tribal resident was arrested in North Dakota this week on suspicion of second-degree homicide of his girlfriend in February.
Randy Lee Littlebird, 35, was taken into custody Wednesday by federal agents and placed in a Bismarck jail.
According to the Burleigh County, N.D., Detention Center’s inmate list, Littlebird was arrested by the U.S. Marshals Service and placed into custody as a federal prisoner.
A criminal complaint was filed by the FBI on November 19 in U.S. District Court in Billings.
An affidavit from an FBI agent states that in February, Littlebird’s girlfriend was found dead in the home they shared in Birney, which is inside the boundaries of the Northern Cheyenne Indian Reservation.
The Bureau of Indian Affairs responded to the residence to find the victim unresponsive, with blood coming from her nose and a rope several feet from her body. Littlebird told police the victim tried to hang herself.
However, Claude Goggle, who owned the home where the three lived, told police a different story.
Goggle recalled the couple fighting earlier in the night at a different location in the home. At one point he heard Littlebird’s girlfriend call out “No Randy, don’t, don’t.” The victim then called out in pain, then there was silence.
Littlebird then told Goggle that his girlfriend was unresponsive on the floor. Littlebird was also crying and said, “I don’t know why she did it to herself.”
Littlebird was arrested on suspicion of criminal homicide by members of the Bureau of Indian Affairs.
An autopsy performed on the victim’s body revealed she died from strangulation and blunt force trauma.
in a second round of questioning with police, Littlebird then revealed that he placed the rope around the victim’s neck, and pulled it as he stood behind and above her.
Littlebird’s ex-wife and a former girlfriend also told police that he was often abusive and routinely assaulted them.
-Andrea Lutz reporting for MTN News