GREAT FALLS — Shem Abram Killsnight of Great Falls, who admitted assaulting another man with a machete in Browning, was sentenced in federal court in Great Falls on Wednesday.
Acting U.S. Attorney Leif Johnson said in a news release that Killsnight, 42 years old, pleaded guilty on October 19, 2020 to a charge of assault with a dangerous weapon.
According to court documents, on June 4, 2019, Killsnight went to the home of another person (identified as "John Doe") on the Blackfeet Indian Reservation. Killsnight also brought a machete to the residence.
John Doe believed that Killsnight was under the influence of methamphetamine at the time. John Doe attempted to get his children out of the room from Killsnight.
While John Doe was getting the children away, Killsnight swung the machete at John Doe and struck John Doe in the hand with the machete. The assault by Killsnight caused a deep wound to John Doe’s hand for which John Doe required medical treatment.
Court documents also note that while high on meth, Killsnight experienced paranoic hallucinations. He purchased a machete to ostensibly protect himself from the white supremacists and FBI that were surrounding the residence.
When he was found by law enforcement officers, he possessed not only the machete, but a long metal pipe and a bottle of Black Velvet whiskey. He failed to comply with law enforcement officers, and the officers deployed three tasers to try and gain control of him. After he was taken into custody, he continued to be combative. After treatment, he resisted officers and he had to be forced to the ground to gain control and once at the jail, the defendant resisted again and had to be forcefully placed in the holding cell.
The previous year, Killsnight was arrested by Blackfeet Law Enforcement after discharging a firearm in a residence occupied by minor children.
Chief U.S. District Judge Brian Morris presided, and sentenced Killsnight to one year and one day in prison, followed by two years of supervised release.